Canada Games partnerships ramp up with one year to go

The countdown is on.

With just over a year before the 2022 Canada Summer Games kick off on Brock’s main campus, the University is ramping up its integrated partnerships with the Games.

Along with the construction of Canada Games Park at the University, Julie Stevens, Special Advisor to the President — Canada Games, says Brock is leveraging the event to benefit its students, faculty, staff and the Brock community as a whole.

“The Games have touched almost every corner of the University, from curricular growth and research development to community partnerships and new facilities,” she says. “Collectively, each initiative we embark upon leads to a robust academic legacy that will enhance learning opportunities and provide an engaging campus experience for Brock University students well beyond the Games.”

In the curricular area, Brock has seen Games-related innovation take place in 21 new and existing courses across 30 offerings in five Faculties and 15 departments. Many of the projects have been funded by the Canada Games Teaching and Learning Innovation Grant, which Stevens says has been transformational.

“A total of $50,000 was dedicated to curricular development and to date, more than 5,500 students have benefitted from Canada Games-related topics in a course,” she says. “We are fortunate to have creative faculty who are enthusiastic about the Games and continually find ways to improve their teaching practices.”

The Games have had a similar impact on Brock’s research endeavours, where to date, Canada Games Research Grants totalling more than $140,000 have been distributed to 14 departments across six Faculties, as well as the Brock University Library.

With such diverse projects taking place, Stevens says faculty members have stepped up to weave the Games into their research.

“The connection of research and creative work across multiple disciplines shows the impressive, inventive thinking of Brock researchers,” she says. “To date, 22 funded projects draw upon Games themes to explore technology, arts and culture, community development, communication, marketing, education, children and youth, health and sport performance.”

The partnerships between Brock and the Games have also been beneficial to the community as a whole thanks to the launch of the Brock University Volunteer Association (BUVA), which has seen more than 60 students complete 600 hours of volunteer work relating to the Games and opportunities with other organizations.

Stevens says BUVA was sparked by the fact that volunteers are the heart of each Canada Games and will be a key part of Niagara’s Summer Games as well. Because BUVA is a new student association within Student Life, there is an emphasis on peer-to-peer social connection and professional development opportunities to meet industry professionals.

“Students are engaged as volunteers for Niagara’s Canada Summer Games Host Society, test events and planning roles as well as for existing Niagara partners, which will also strengthen Brock’s overall ties with the community,” says Stevens.

With so many initiatives already established and the clock ticking towards the launch of the Games, Stevens is perhaps most excited about the long-term benefits she says the Games will bring to the University, even after the two-week event concludes in August 2022.

“It is exciting to see the integration of the Canada Games into numerous academic and student service areas of the University,” she says. “It is truly a pan-campus approach that will live on at Brock in the programs and numerous other initiatives that have been developed for years to come. The Games spirit will continue to grow as the final-year countdown begins.”

To learn more about Brock’s involvement in the Games, visit the Niagara 2022 Canada Summer Games at Brock University website.

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