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Sept. 1, 2017
For Immediate Release

Waterloo – Wilfrid Laurier University is welcoming first-year students to its Waterloo campus community this fall with a series of orientation events taking place Sept. 3-9.

The Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union has organized an Orientation Week schedule that highlights the strengths of Laurier’s inclusive community. Orientation Week will focus on helping first-year students balance elements of student life while achieving academic success, enjoying life in Waterloo Region, and understanding the importance of Laurier’s student body in the community. A select list of Orientation Week events with photo opportunities for the media can be found below, including times and locations.

“Hundreds of student volunteers, faculty and staff have been hard at work preparing for the much-anticipated arrival of our largest incoming class to date,” said Leanne Holland Brown, dean of students in Waterloo. “The first couple of weeks of term provide countless opportunities for students to learn about the variety of programs, resources and services here at Laurier to support their personal and academic success. We’re thrilled to welcome our newest Golden Hawks to the Laurier community.”

Key programming initiatives for Orientation Week include sessions covering consent and gendered violence prevention, physical and mental wellness with an emphasis on student safety and support.

“Orientation Week is a time for incoming students to commence their journey at Laurier. It is an exciting opportunity for students to make new friends and pursue their passions and interests, with an emphasis on events imperative for transition and student success,” said Kanwar Brar, president and CEO of the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union. “Students are an integral part of both the Waterloo and Brantford communities. At the Students’ Union, our mission is to provide the best experience for students, and through Orientation Week, we empower students to achieve.”

All first-year students, whether registered for Orientation Week or not, will attend Succeeding at University sessions Sept. 5 for tips and advice from faculty champions on a successful and positive start to university, and Academic Success Sessions on Sept. 6, which provide academic program and faculty-specific information, including the opportunity to meet key faculty members and academic advisors.

New this year, the Positive Pulse event on Sept. 5 will focus on student wellness and mental health. The event incorporates physical activities such as yoga and Zumba, and gives students the chance to ask tough questions about transition and change. Facilitated by educational programming company Disruptt, students can anonymously submit any fears they have about coming to university, which are addressed through thought-provoking questions and responses. 

Laurier will again host a demonstration about the importance of kitchen and bedroom fire safety, presented by Waterloo Fire Rescue (WFR) at Laurier’s Northdale Campus on Sept. 5.

Firefighters will ignite and suppress fire in a single room to demonstrate the importance of smoke alarms, how quickly fire can spread and the importance of having an evacuation plan. The kitchen fire demonstration will show the effect of putting water on a grease fire and how to properly extinguish it.

On Sept. 6, following the academic information and program-specific sessions, author and co-founder of the Date Safe Project Inc. Mike Domitrz will present ‘Can I Kiss You?’ This interactive presentation brings a unique approach to tackling important topics such as dating, intimacy, consent, how to be an active bystander and sexual assault.

On Sept. 7, students will meet fellow first-year students from other schools at WaterlooFest in Waterloo Public Square. Organized in partnership with the City of Waterloo, the University of Waterloo and Laurier, the event includes live performances and food trucks and allows students to meet city officials and each other while getting to know their city.

On Sept. 9, first-year students will participate in Shine Day throughout Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Brantford. Continuing a tradition that started at Laurier more than 50 years ago, students will wash cars, shine shoes and run barbecues to raise money for Shinerama, which helps fund cystic fibrosis research and treatment.

On Sept. 10, Laurier is taking part in Mysterious Barricades, an annual cross-country concert to acknowledge World Suicide Prevention Day, with a live performance from 1:30 – 3 p.m. in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall. Admission is free. Sixteen live-streamed performances will take place from coast-to-coast, with 22 continual hours of concerts. A resource fair in the Theatre Auditorium runs from noon to 4 p.m.

In addition to the Students’ Union programming, an International Orientation for Laurier’s new international students will take place Sept. 1-9. Graduate Student Orientation events will run on Sept. 6 hosted by the Office of Student Affairs, the Faculty of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies and the Graduate Students’ Association. Radical Orientation Week, organized by the Laurier Students Public Interest Research Group, will run Sept. 11-15 to showcase resources and organizations doing social justice work on campus. Events include exploring myths around Indigenous Nations, sexual health including LGBTQ2s+ perspectives, queer and trans orientation, a participatory art project for gendered or sexual assault survivors to share their stories, and more.

Laurier’s Brantford campus will also be running Orientation Week activities for first-year students.

Photo opportunities at Laurier’s Waterloo campus Orientation Week Events

Room Burn Demonstration, Sept. 5, 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
Location: Laurier Northdale Campus 66 Hickory Street W

Can I Kiss You, Sept. 6, 12:30-1:30 p.m. and 2:30-3:30 p.m.
Location: Athletic Complex

City of Waterloo’s Waterloo Fest, Sept. 7, 3 –7:30 p.m.
Location: Uptown Waterloo

Get Involved Fair, Sept. 8, 10 a.m.–3 p.m.
Location: Laurier Alumni Field

Shine Day (Shinerama 2017), Sept. 9, 8:30 a.m.– 2:45 p.m.
Location: Various locations in Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Brantford

Fall term classes begin Sept. 7, with passive programming for Orientation Week scheduled on Sept. 7 and Sept. 8 to allow students to attend classes.

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Media Contacts:

Kanwar Brar, President and CEO

Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union

E: supresident@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x3409

Kevin Crowley, Director

Communications and Public Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University

E: kcrowley@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x3070

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