Badgers deliver creative Student-Athlete Orientation for 2020-21

Brock Sports is launching Welcome Week with a creative new Student-Athlete Orientation for more than 900 varsity and club athletes.

This year, Student-Athlete Orientation will run from Sept. 8 to 30 and will be available on Brock’s Sakai-based Learning Management System with a variety of online modules, including new components on Human Rights and Equity and Mental Health.

The orientation covers everything from academic supports to how to book a treatment in the Brock Sports Medicine Clinic.

As part of the orientation, Canadian Football League veteran and 2011 Grey Cup Champion J.R. LaRose will deliver a dynamic seminar to student-athletes about active student leadership, consent, sexual violence prevention and advocacy on Wednesday, Sept. 9.

Brock Sports Associate Director Emily Allan said this year’s Student-Athlete Orientation is more comprehensive than ever.

“Due to the cancellation of the fall season, we have an opportunity to deliver more information,” said Allan. “Student-athletes now have a month to complete the modules rather than the condensed Athlete Orientation we typically deliver in the finite period of time between when students usually arrive on campus and before the season starts. We’ve capitalized on the chance to go virtual while being more innovative and creative to enhance our student-athlete training.”

Training programs have been phased-in for a small group of sports as only six members of each team are allowed to train in the Brock Sports Performance Centre at a time. Student-athletes have a choice to keep their mask on or off while training in the controlled environment.

During the off-season, Brock Sports worked closely with the new BrockU 4U program, which aims to provide personalized support to first-year students in their experience and transition.

A total of 12 Brock student-athletes are among 100 upper-year students serving as peer mentors to help incoming students navigate life as a Badger.

Game Day and Special Events Co-ordinator Erica Wortley, as well as Varsity and Student-Athlete Services Co-ordinator David Velasco, took part in the development of this new program.

“These online orientation modules and experiences have been designed to offer our incoming students an unforgettable adventure and a pathway to success,” said Velasco. “The BU4U staff are very passionate about supporting our Brock students. This project will have a positive impact in our student community.”

First-year students are encouraged to participate in the Virtual Welcome Week Fitness Challenge from Sept. 4 to 11 for their chance to win a Brock Sports prize pack worth more than $200 from the Brock Campus Store in collaboration with Residence and Brock Recreation. Follow Brock Recreation on Instagram or visit the registration page to participate.

As students return to campus this week, the University is entering Stage 3 of its own five-stage pandemic recovery plan.

On Sept. 8, the Walker Sports Complex will begin a phased re-opening for Brock students only. Pre-registration is mandatory for all access and activity. Students must visit for information about pre-registration and safety protocols.

These facilities include the pool for lane swimming only, Alumni Field, outdoor tennis courts and courts in the Ian D. Beddis Gymnasium for limited basketball and badminton activities. A temporary fitness centre has also been set up in the Ian D. Beddis Gym.

Change rooms and showers are only available for those using the pool as required by Public Health. No lockers will be available.

The wider Brock community will gain access to the Walker Sports Complex and its programs in a safe and gradual manner. The facilities may not resume until the University progresses to Stage 4 of Brock’s pandemic recovery plan.

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