Alumni Profile: Jim Watson’s passion for politics

Originally published at charlatan.ca

jimwatson
On the day after every mayoral election in Ottawa since the first year he won, current Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson’s tradition is to have lunch at the Tim Hortons in Carleton’s Residence Commons. Many students who approach him ask why he’s there, of all places, right after his win.

“I’m showing up as a symbol. Just because the election’s over doesn’t mean my connection with Carleton is over,” he said. Continue reading

Power in a Name

Originally published in Crosstalk, newspaper of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa.

“There is power in a name,” began Rev. Mark Whittall’s homily at St. Albans on Sunday Sept. 27.

Eliot Waddingham's re-naming service, a non-binary transgender parishioner who goes by the pronoun 'they.'

All eyes were glued to the front from a congregation made up of friends, family and community members, some who had never been to church, others regular parishioners. Regardless of background, there was a buzzing energy in hearing original liturgy on Re-Naming a Transgender parishioner.

Rev. Whittall described the problems of the “them vs. us” mentality in Mark 9:38-50 as he explained how “people who are queer and transgender in our society and in our church understand this dynamic only too well. They know first-hand the barriers and boundaries that we set up to define who is in and who is out.”

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Finding the medicine cabinet in your backyard

Originally published at londoncommunitynews.com

While dandelions and weeds are often something we aim to get rid of, Robert -McQueen actively searches for them, teaching others about their medicinal value. Last Wednesday evening he led a workshop on how to heal with herbs and based on the turnout, he’s not the only one who looks for dandelions.

Rob McQueen leading the workshop on medicinal herbs at Queens Park on Aug. 27.

Rob McQueen leading the workshop on medicinal herbs at Queens Park on Aug. 27.

The herb class, which was originally to be held at East Village Arts Collective on Dundas street, was relocated to Queens Park because of an unexpectedly large turnout of about 60 participants.

Many participants came with sample weeds from their gardens, to confirm what it was and what it can be used for. McQueen said identification is the first step.

“Identify, know what it’s for and know your body,” he said.

McQueen, who has been studying medicinal herbs for 50 years, first learned their value when he was 12 and suffering from ringworm scabs. After many unsuccessful trips to the doctor, he noted the cows on his farm didn’t get ringworm in the spring when they ate grass. So he dug up some grasses and herbs, ate them, and after two weeks he said his scabs were gone.

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Bakery’s recipes unveiled in teaching workshops

Originally published at londoncommunitynews.com

The Artisan Bakery is planning to share some of its famous bread and pastry recipes in the launch of their own food education centre, the Artisan Bakery Workshop, set to open Sept. 1.

From sessions for children to baking for young families, Theo and Gerda Korthof said they will have it all.

“We will have sessions for baking sour dough, decorating cakes and making pastries and pretzels,” said Gerda, explaining how lessons will vary from two hours to two days, depending on the recipes.

Theo and Gerda Korthof (centre) and two employees in the new workshop.

Theo and Gerda Korthof (centre) and two employees in the new workshop.

For Theo, the idea to add an educational aspect to the bakery is rooted in a larger issue.

“The loss of the entire food industry has been very neglected. Have a feast and you can get it cheap, but you don’t want to know what’s in it,” he said.

With many bakers reverting to pre-mixes to save time and adding chemicals to make bread last longer, Theo said the trade of baking is being lost.

“I want to teach because I want people to understand what good food really is. We need to have something to let people know what bread is all about.”

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The Youth Vote: Will this election be different?

Originally Published at londoncommunitynews.com

With education costs and youth employment rates on the table, Ontario youth leaders are working to encourage other young people to get out to the polls on June 12.

“There is a lot at stake in this election,” said Michelle Johnston, president of the Ontario Young Liberals. “I think a lot of people view politics as a separate entity in life that they can choose to acknowledge or not, but when you drill down you realize that it is real life.”

Chantelle Ivanski and Will Cockrell, members of the Western NDP club, are casting a ballot June 12 and advocating for the importance of the youth vote in the upcoming election.

Chantelle Ivanski and Will Cockrell, members of the Western NDP club, are casting a ballot June 12 and advocating for the importance of the youth vote in the upcoming election.

Johnston became involved in government after beginning her political science degree at the University of Toronto.

Changes to tuition grants, OSAP funding and minimum wage are a few of the issues directly affecting students in the upcoming election. Johnston emphasized the need for a personal student connection to these kinds of specific issues. This connection is key to increasing youth voter turnout, she said, a number that has been low in the past, but one Johnston said is changing.

According to Elections Canada, about 34 per cent of youth aged 18-24 voted in the 2008 federal election and 39 per cent in 2011.

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U of T researchers bring invisibility cloak to life

Originally published at charlatan.ca

The cloak works by preventing light rays from bouncing off the material. (Photo courtesy Marit Mitchell, U of T)

The cloak works by preventing light rays from bouncing off the material. (Photo courtesy Marit Mitchell, U of T)

 Two University of Toronto researchers have created an invisibility cloaking system, sparking the imagination of Harry Potter and science fiction fans alike.

Electrical and computer engineering professor George Eleftheriades, and his PhD student Michael Selvanayagam published their design of the cloaking system in the Physical Review X scientific journal Nov. 12.
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Pride London Festival: Draping the city in rainbows

Originally published at carletonjhr.com

Participants of the Pride London Festival hold a banner and show off their rainbow colours. Photo by Erica Howes

Participants of the Pride London Festival hold a banner and show off their rainbow colours. Photo by Erica Howes

The morning of July 28, downtown London, Ont. came alive in rainbow colours. With over 700 registered floats and thousands of Londoners showing support, it was the largest Pride Parade the city has ever seen.

Andrew Rosser, president of the Pride London Festival said that this year the board of directors focused on creating a “family-friendly atmosphere.”
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