93-year-old history buff among grads set to cross Brock Convocation stage

With more than 3,500 students set to convocate next week at Brock University, there are plenty of inspiring stories of determination and hard work in the crowd.

Nine Spring Convocation ceremonies will take place in Ian Beddis Gymnasium over five days from Monday, June 5 to Friday, June 9. Ceremonies will take place at 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. each day, except for Friday, when only a morning ceremony will be held.

In all, 3,121 undergrad students and 433 grad students will receive degrees. Honorary doctorates will be presented to Maureen Sabia, Chairman of the Board for Canadian Tire Corporation and David Kanatawakhon-Maracle, an instructor of Mohawk language.

Among those 3,554 graduands are 93 student-athletes in 24 different programs who have carefully balanced their time between studying and representing the Brock Badgers on 37 varsity or club sports teams.

All of the Convocation ceremonies are free to attend and no tickets are required. Parking is free for guests throughout the week.


Live and on-demand videos of all of this year’s convocation ceremonies will be available free online at brocku.ca/livestream

Below is a schedule of this year’s convocation ceremonies along with some of the highlight stories:

Monday, June 5, 10 a.m. — Faculty of Social Sciences

  • The first convocation speaker of 2017, Psychology Professor Tim Murphy is the Social Sciences recipient of the Faculty Teaching Award.

Monday, June 5, 2:30 p.m. — Faculty of Social Sciences

  • Devon Ainslie is one of 12 recipients of the 2016-17 Spirit of Brock Awards, given to one undergrad and one graduate student from each faculty who stand out as academic and community leaders. Ainslie has been a Brock ambassador and organizer for numerous events on and off campus.


Tuesday, June 6, 10 a.m. — Faculty of Education

Tuesday, June 6, 2:30 p.m. — Faculty of Education

  • Lauren Caldwell will become the Faculty of Education’s first-ever BEd Specialist graduate as she completes the additional qualification program created in 2011. The professional degree program for educators allows for in-depth research and study in areas of teaching, learning and curriculum.


Wednesday, June 7, 10 a.m. — Faculty of Applied Health Sciences

  • Lindsay Cline will receive her doctorate after completing award-winning research focusing on the power of positive body image. Cline is the recipient of the Governor General’s Gold Medal for receiving a 97 per cent average, the highest mark of all 433 graduate students convocating this year.

Wednesday, June 7, 2:30 p.m. — Faculty of Applied Health Sciences

  • Jonah Mondloch was seven years old when his grandfather, Charles Burke, started taking classes at Brock. Fifteen years later, the two will graduate together — Jonah with a degree in Kinesiology and Charles with a general degree in Humanities. The two will be hooded by Brock Professor Cathy Mondloch, Jonah’s mother and Charles’ daughter.


Thursday, June 8, 10 a.m. — Goodman School of Business

Thursday, June 8, 2:30 p.m. — Goodman School of Business

  • Maureen Sabia, Chairman of the Board for Canadian Tire Corporation, who grew up in St. Catharines, will receive an honorary degree and give the Convocation address. Sabia, the daughter of high-profile social activist Laura Sabia who received her own honorary degree from Brock in 1979, is one of Canada’s most powerful female business leaders.
  • Business graduate Jessica Menchella will receive the Dean’s Medal Award for the highest overall average in Brock’s Goodman School of Business, but she’s not the first in her family to receive the honour. Menchella is following in the footsteps of her brother, Jordan, who also received the prestigious honour when he graduated from the same program in 2014.


Friday, June 9, 10 a.m. — Faculties of Humanities and Mathematics and Science

  • David Kanatawakhon-Maracle, who has made it his life’s work to teach the Mohawk language, will receive an honorary doctorate and deliver the Convocation address Friday. Kanatawakhon’s texts have become the foundational tools for those learning indigenous languages.
  • Robin Guard, 93, and Allan Edgington, 74, have spent nearly a century watching history unravel before their eyes — and the past few years closely studying it. The friends will convocate together, completing the Master of Arts in History program, of which Guard will become the oldest-ever graduate.

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