Remembering Our Angels And Increasing Pregnancy Loss Awareness

Tens of thousands of families all over the world are devastated each year by the death of their baby. The grief of these families and the value of their babies’ lives are very rarely acknowledged. In 1988, US President Ronald Reagan declared October as a month to recognize the unique grief of bereaved parents in an effort to demonstrate support to the many families who have suffered such a tragic loss. Promoting awareness of pregnancy and infant loss not only increases the likelihood that grieving families will receive understanding and support, but also results in improved education and prevention efforts which may ultimately reduce the incidence of these tragedies. While that was in the States, in Canada, we have legislation as part of the legislation in 2008.

The Legislative Assembly of Manitoba created Bill 226. This bill proclaims October 15 in each year as "Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day".

In Manitoba, the not for profit organization Manitoba Angel Dresses aims to help these grieving parents and families by donating hand sewn gowns, bonnets (which are either sewn or knitted), a blanket, and a keepsake for the parents to remember the small life that was lost much too soon.   

Photo Credit: Kelly Michaluk

The effects of loss are variable for each individual and family unit who experiences bereavement; common effects include, however are not limited to: depression, anxiety, changes in relationships, development of unhealthy coping mechanisms, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. These effects, amongst others, are often underestimated, misunderstood, and otherwise overlooked by health care professionals, friends, and even family members, especially when concerning pregnancy loss related bereavement and subsequent grief.

Photo Credit: Henrik langer

The Manitoba Angel Dresses are holding three information booths before the new year. The first one will be October 19th, followed by one on November 29th and December 9th at the Shoppers mall here in Brandon. The booth will be open between 10am and 5pm. It will also be fundraising through their Angel Dresses Calendars, which can be bought for $10. The calendars showcase the amazing talents and dedication of the volunteers. 

Any questions can be asked at these booths and if you wish to volunteer for the organization, you can fill out a form at the booth or the information can be discovered at their website or Facebook page. 

@manitobaangeldresses for Facebook 

Mid-October Snow Storm

Thanksgiving weekend certainly started out interestingly with Brandon’s first snowfall… which turned into a storm rather quickly. 

On Wednesday, a Colorado low-weather system moved into Manitoba from the United States. It has wreaked havoc by downing power lines and tree limbs across the province, from the southwest corner into the Red River Valley and northwest toward Berens River and into Saskatchewan. Meanwhile Brandon didn’t get hit by the worse of the storm until Friday. 

Before that we only had a little snow that barely covered the still very green grass. Now, on Monday October 15th, Thanksgiving Day, we have a thick layer of snow covering our lawns and roads.   

pc: cbc news

Power outages across Manitoba became an issue through out the storm and still is in some areas. Despite the efforts by Manitoba Hydro, the number of customers without power was up and down Friday. By 7 p.m. Friday night, Manitoba Hydro reported almost 50,000 customers were in the dark with roughly 14,000 outages in Winnipeg alone. That's as wet snow and gusty winds take a toll on tree branches and the powerlines. 

Brandon wasn’t as badly affected as the Winnipeg area. The state of emergency declared Saturday by the Premier, allows Manitoba Hydro to invoke its ‘mutual aid’ agreements with neighbouring Canadian and U.S. utilities for support and additional materials such as poles, overhead wires, and equipment. This is the first time Manitoba Hydro has asked for mutual aid from other utilities and it is an indication of the unprecedented level of damage crews are discovering as they gain access to impacted areas of the province. The storm conditions also made it difficult for hydro workers to get to the areas affected. 

The snow wasn’t easy to clear either. Interestingly enough, if it had been minus 20 degrees, the snow would have been easier to clear by plow but the weather over the past few days has been quite warm, just above or just below freezing which made the snow wet and dropping in clumps. 

Water levels on Manitoba's Red River have been rising on both sides of the Canada and U.S. border and are now higher than they have been since record keeping began back in 1971. For the first time ever in the fall season, the Red River Floodway has been put into use with the heavy rainfall amounts expected through the weekend and into the week.  

pc: kai neiman

This unusual early winter storm has created a number of issues and closed almost all highways but by Thanksgiving many highways have reopened, roads have been plowed and many have had their power restored. 

And that is something to truly be thankful for. 

Town Hall

Calling all students!  Calling all students! Today from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. a town hall will be hosted on campus. Here, students and faculty have the opportunity to meet and greet the candidates that are running in this years federal election for the riding of Brandon-Souris. As many of you may have noticed, the federal riding that Brandon belongs to is far larger than our provincial ridings. Indeed, there are three different ridings covering Brandon and the surrounding area in provincial politics but only one when it comes to federal affairs. The riding of Brandon-Souris is quite large, especially when compared to the size of ridings found in Winnipeg and the Greater Toronto Area. However, despite its large size, the riding of Brandon-Souris has only around 60,000 eligible voters. As university students, many of you are included in that 60,000. It is fundamentally important to vote, either on election day or at one of the advance polls. However, voting should not be some menial task where you close your eyes and pick a candidate randomly. Voters should be educated on what each party and candidate stands for, as well as what they plan to do should they be elected. This town hall presents a perfect opportunity to get out and meet your local candidates. Below are a few summarized details about each candidate for the riding of Brandon-Souris in the 2019 Federal Election. 

Larry Maguire is the incumbent Member of Parliament for Brandon-Souris and represents the Conservative Party of Canada. He was first elected in a by-election in November 2013 and was elected to Parliament in the federal election of October 2015. Larry grew up in Souris and has lived in the Westman riding ever since. He holds a Diploma in Agriculture from the University of Manitoba and comes from a farming background. Some important priorities for Larry and the Conservative Party, should they get elected, include repealing the carbon tax, removing GST off home heating bills, enhancing Registered Education Savings Plans and tackling rural area crime. 

The Liberal Party of Canada has chosen Terry Hayward to run with their banner in the riding of Brandon-Souris. Terry was born and raised in Brandon and graduated from Harrison High School. He has been in the agriculture industry for over 35 years. During that time, he served in the public eye as a Canadian diplomat in both the United States and New Zealand. For Terry Hayward and the Liberal Party of Canada, its all about the middle class. If elected, they plan to straighten gun control by banning assault style weapons in Canada. Other priorities include fighting climate change by planting two billion trees and banning single use plastics as well as attracting clean technology companies. 

Many students in Brandon have come to support the NDP. The New Democratic Party has selected Ashley Duguay as their 2019 candidate. Ashley grew up in a military household and traveled across the country. If elected as Member of Parliament for Brandon-Souris she plans to fight for a minimum wage of $15.00 an hour. Other priorities include a universal pharmacare program, where the cost of prescription drugs is fully covered by the federal government. Ashley believes that medications are fundamental to the well-being of Canadians and therefore should be the responsibility of the government, not the average consumer, to cover the cost. 

With the increased attention on environmental policies, it comes at no surprise that the Green Party of Canada is gaining support across the nation. Here in Brandon-Souris, the Green Party has selected Bill Thiessen as their 2019 candidate. Bill and the Green Party  are fundamentally focused on combating climate change. They want to move Canada away from fossil fuel dependence. If elected, they will lower the voting age to 16 years old, mandate that public interest comes before government confidentiality and eliminate the first past the post electoral system. Other priorities include implementing a committee to review Member of Parliament’s salaries and budgets.

A relatively new party, the Peoples Party of Canada was founded by former Conservative MP and federal minister Maxime Bernier. Tabling a more populist platform, the Peoples Party is seen as an alternative to the Conservative Party. Rob Lussier is the 2019 candidate for Brandon-Souris. Rob was born in Winnipeg but was raised in Nanaimo, British Columbia. Ever since the age of 13 Rob has been involved in the army. He ended his military career in Shilo as the commanding officer of 2520 RCACC after 32 years of service. Rob and the Peoples Party want to reduce immigration levels and focus on skilled immigrants if elected. Other priorities include ending official multiculturalism and supporting the veterans. 

The Christian Heritage Party is also running a candidate in Brandon-Souris for the 2019 federal election. Rebecca Hein is the local candidate and has been involved in politics since an early age. She even served as the volunteer coordinator for a federal election campaign back in 2015. If elected, Rebecca is elected she plans to fight the carbon tax and defund the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. She also would want to see abortion delegalized and freedom of speech rights increased. The Canadian Heritage party is also planning on replacing the Indian Act is elected. 

Finally, there are also two independent candidates running for the federal seat of Brandon-Souris. They are Robert Eastcott and Vanessa Hamilton. Rob is running as an independent candidate because he believes the people of the riding deserve change. 

Vanessa is a former city councillor. She’s no stranger to politics and says she is running as an independent because the majority of Canadians do not belong to a federal party. She believes an experienced, independent voice is needed here. 

The town hall will be held today (Tuesday, October 15th) in Harvest Hall from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. There is no charge to attend the town hall, meaning we have no excuse to not get politically involved in our community!

Mind Over Mood; Upcoming Workshop

On Wednesday October 9th Brandon University will be hosting its first Mind Over Mood workshop. It will be taking place in the McKenzie building inside room number 005. This workshop is the first of 5 sessions to take place at BU.  This workshop aims to teach participants how to cope with anxiety and how to manage it throughout the year. In order to participate, you must pre-register and pay a one-time fee of $5.00. You must also commit to all five sessions. This anxiety workshop also provides you with a “Mind Over Mood” workshop. Space is limited therefore if you are interested in attending register at Student Services Room 102 in the McKenzie Building. 

Every session is held on Wednesday and it runs from 5:00pm-7:00pm. It will run October 9th,16th, 23th, 30th and the last session will be on November 6th.In case you are interested in participating but the workshop times and dates do not work out for you, feel free to reach out to its coordinator Marsha Harris, or schedule counselling appointment. You can schedule a counselling appointment at Student Services or call 204-727-9737. To contact Marsha Harris you can email her at or call 204-727-9779. 

Fall Career Day

Every semester Brandon University hosts a career day in which a number of larger businesses or employment services set up in the mingling area. 

The aim of this event is for students to try and find jobs on the path of their degree, or to fin a part time job while in school. 

The event was on October 2nd and ran from 10 in the morning until 2 in the afternoon. At career day was HyLife, BMO, Simplot, GC Jobs, and many others. 

Some of these jobs require the student o be graduating soon, or to work full time in the spring and summer months. There were others that employed part time for only a few days at a week, such as Co-op. In jobs at Simply or HyLife are more intern style jobs for up to six days a week and twelves hours a day. While either option may seem hectic for a student, it provides awesome experience and the knowledge on what you may do after your degree is up. 

There was also employment services at the event. One was Career Services from BU with Doug Pople to help any students who ask. There was also Career & Employment Youth Services, which like the services at BU can help with resume and cover letter writing and job searches. 

While going to each of the booths at the event, I asked the employers if they found much success at events like these. For the majority, the answer was yes. They find that students are interested in the various forms of employment that can be offered. At Simplot for example has anything from environmental services, to product management to supply chain/procurement services. Any of these jobs can be useful to a science degree, or a business degree. 

If you missed the event, you can get help from career services here at Brandon University. There is also another event in the upcoming winter semester. 

Job hunting can be difficult inside and out of school but these businesses and services aim to help students if they need it. 

Brandon University Reaches New Faculty Deal

Brandon University is able to reach a new four-year deal with faculty association. Brandon University has secured four more years of labour stability through the ratification of a comprehensive new collective agreement with the Brandon University Faculty Association.

The agreement, which was approved by the BU Board of Governors by the end of September and it covers the time period between April 1, 2019 through March 31, 2023.

“I am very pleased with the new collective agreement, which is good for faculty, good for the University, and good for our students as well,” said BU President Dr. David Docherty. “I look forward to the next four years, and I am especially happy with our increased ability to support and engage our faculty in research.”

The agreement abides by Manitoba’s Public Services Sustainability Act, and provides for general annual salary increases of 0%, 0%, 0.75%, and 1% (Information and quotes are taken directly from the Brandon University website)

Hopefully this deal will benefit not only professors but also the students hoping to learn more from research as well. 

Get A Jumpstart On Your Intended Career!

Cooperative education is a relatively new program available to students at Brandon University. It is a program that alternates between full time school terms and work terms. Learning at school, as well as learning in an actual work environment related to the declared major of the degree. While at this moment, most majors that are more common in the program are science or history majors, there are plans to provide more opportunities for those in arts majors. This program is an excellent opportunity to test drive your planned career, to make sure it is what you want to do. 

Students can register for the program in their second year of university as long as they are in a 4-year degree or 4 years honors degree. Each term (fall/winter) need to be between 9 and 15 credit hours and each work term counts as 3 credit hours. Not only do you gain experience in relation theory in this program, it is also possible that you will be hired more quickly in your field quickly after the completion of the degree. 

In order to apply to this program, eligible students must submit a completed application form, employment history, transcript and cover letter to the co-op office. Acceptance into this program is based upon program availability, academic performance, and completion of the required courses. While admission is not definite, it is an excellent opportunity.  There are the usual tuition fees associated with classes, and there is also a second one-time fee of 650$. International students can qualify as long as they have a valid work permit. Students who wish to apply for this program can find out more information at\Co-op or to contact Cora Dupois. The co-operative education coordinator at or 204 571 7848. 

The deadline for this year’s applicants is September 26th. Good Luck!

Breaking The Record

On Friday, September 13th, those who were in the down under trying to break the record of most sandwiches made, had a lot of good luck on their side. 

The hope was to make 300 sandwiches in 30 minutes. However on the day, 332 sandwiches were made in 23 minutes and 13 seconds. 

All of the sandwiches made did not go to waste either, as with the original intention, the sandwiches were donated to Bear Clan Patrol. 

This event and the sandwiches themselves were made possible by BU Food Services, Student Services, and the Indigenous Peoples’ Centre.

Bus Transit For Students

Riding the bus has become easier for students. By using your BU student ID cards, we are able to ride the bus for free. Simply scan your ID as you would any other bus pass and you are able to ride the bus. You can use your BU ID as a bus pass until it expires. Brandon University also has various bus stops around campus, the following list shows where the buses stop and at what intervals of time they stop.

Route 14 Victoria West (stop located on Victoria Ave in front beside the Art Gallery Building)

Route 14 stops every :05/:35, after 4pm it runs every :05 until 10pm

Route 17 South Central (stop located on 18th St. in front of Clark Hall), 

Route 17 stops every :03/:33, after 4pm it runs every :03 until 10pm

Route 8 Maryland West (stop located on Princess Ave. near the Auditorium)

Route 8 stops every :03/:33, after 4pm it runs every :03 until 10pm.

Route 22 Riverheights West (stop located across the street from BU on Princess Ave)

Route 22 stops every :03/:33, after 4pm it runs every :03 until 10pm.

Using these bus routes students are able to get to anywhere they may need. A more detailed route and schedule plan is available in the Brandon Transit website. You can view where you want to go using their google trip planner and it’ll tell you which bus to take and at what bus stop to wait for it. 

Day To Remember, A Week Of Canadian Compassion…

18 years ago, the events of 9/11 captured the attention of the entire world and became a tragic place in American history. As America came under attack by terrorists, all of American air space was shut down, all planes were grounded. 

Any planes that traveled along the east coast or were international, were grounded , for the most part, in Gander, Newfoundland. a total of 38 planes landed at the small airport, in a town of only 10, 000. 6, 700 passengers got off of those planes and into the arms of hospitality of Gander residents for a total of five days.

As each plane landed, and the passengers waited for news; the town bustled with activity. Volunteers readied makeshift shelters, every school, gym, community centre, church and campsites. Gander’s 500 hotel rooms were reserved for pilots and flight crews.

Bus drivers who were in the middle of a strike, put down picket their picket signs and held up themselves to help in any way they could. Collections consisting of toiletries, clothes, toys, towels, toothbrushes, pillows, blankets and bedding piled up. For security reasons, passengers weren’t allowed to take checked bags, so the donations were a great resource.

Gander residents began to cook a lot. Grocery store shelves were almost completely emptied. The local Walmart ran out of practically everything and the local hockey rink transformed into the world’s largest refrigerator for the enormous amount of cooking taking place.

The helpful residents of Gander refused to accept money, though passengers later donated thousands to the town and created a scholarship fund for the children of Gander.

Because every year, as Sept. 11 reminds America of the unfiltered evil in our world, it’s also necessary to remind ourselves of the human capacity for kindness, selflessness and generosity. It also reminds us in Canada that opening our hearts with generosity isn’t always a bad thing. 

Paws out for the PAW PASS

With a new school year now in session, there are a ton of new things to learn about the Brandon University Campus. What services are offered? Where can you find research materials? Do we have  health insurance through the University? Many of these questions can be answered with a quick visit to the Brandon University Students’ Union office. The Students’ Union office is located on the first floor of the Knowles Douglas Building, pretty much in the middle of campus. Your union provides you with a variety of services throughout the school year, such as a Health and Dental plan, printing access, advocacy services and, last but not least, the Paw Pass. The Paw Pass was founded in 2015 when the Assiniboine Community College Students’ Association and the Brandon University Students’ Union formed a partnership to bring about a discount program for students in Brandon. Since then it has become an assume tool for students to use around the Westman region. Discounts can range anywhere from 10% up to 50%. Below are details regarding the various discounts students get for the 2019-2020 school year.

In all the categories of discounts offered through the Paw Pass, Dining is by far the one that gets used the most. This year, the Paw Pass is jam packed with dining deals available to post-secondary students. Given that both Brandon University and Assiniboine Community College are located in the city of Brandon, the majority of businesses offering discounts are located within the city limits. One of the go to meals for many students is pizza. That glorious piece of pizza layered with sauce, cheese, and tons of toppings, has gotten more than a few students through some late night classes. Papa Johns, located at 3099 18th st, and Dominos Pizza, located at 824 18th st, are both offering students 40% off any pizza. Th only catch is that you have to order online in order to cash in on the discount. The discount code for Dominos is 2019BU while the code for Papa Johns is STUDENT40. Moving away from pizza, there are a variety of other dining establishments within the city of Brandon that support the Paw Pass. East Side Mario's, near Shoppers Mall, offers 20% off to students, while The Pita Pit, just down the street from the University at 658 18th st., also offers a 20% discount. Once in a while you get in the mood for something a little unique, some food thats associated with another country or culture. Rest assured as the Paw Pass has you covered in that department as well. The Wok Box offers students 20% off and is located at 930 18th st here in brandon. The Shawarma Queen also honours the Paw Pass with a 15% discount for students. The Shawarma Queen is located in downtown Brandon at 908 Rosser Avenue. As you can see, there’s no shortage of dining discounts available to students this year. There are loads of other restaurants and bakery’s in the city that are also part of this years Paw Pass, many of them offering students 10% or 15% off regular price. So if you find yourself hungry with no time to cook, take a trip around the city and cash in on some of those delicious discounts!

Dining isn’t the only category in this years Paw Pass. There’s also a section devoted to entertainment! Being a student isn’t exactly the easiest thing in the world. Once in a while you need to sit back, relax, and take time to just rewind. One place that many students find themselves rewinding each year is at Houstons, located at 3130 Victoria Avenue. This night club offers students free cover on Thursday nights. Some students are more into sports than partying. With the Paw Pass you can get $5.00 off adult tickets for Wheat King games this season! Cheer on the home team without breaking the bank. Sports and clubs are great ways to blow off some steam and relax, but what if your not into sports or alcohol? If thats the case, take a trip down to T-Birds, located near the southern tip of the city at 2140 Currie Blvd. Here students can enjoy a game of bowling. By purchasing one hour of game time you get an additional 1/2 free of charge! Whether its competitive or for leisure your sure to have a good time.

Finally the Paw Pass also includes a much needed shopping section! Just because your a post-secondary student doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy shopping! Plus, with discounts offered by the Paw Pass, you don’t need to worry about running your wallet dry. The Little Shoppe, down at 731 18th st, offers students a 25% discount of regularly priced items. While your shopping for clothes you can hit up Bromley’s Menswear at 306 10th st to get 20% off. This will be incredibly useful should you need to freshen up for a presentation or celebration. Some students may require certain uniforms, such as students in the Faculty of Health Studies. The Unique Uniform Shop at 904 13th st. has you covered with 10% off uniforms or 15% off if you also purchase your shoes there. Another discount that would be especially useful come Christmas is the one offered at Reesor’s Jewellery inside Shoppers Mall. Here students can get 20% to 40% off select items. Since some Jewellery can go for hundreds of dollars, you will find this discount invaluable should you need to purchase something for your significant other. Armed with a wide array of shopping discounts you can go to town without feeling guilty about the price tag.

The discounts described above are just a fraction of whats available to you as a student in Brandon. To find out more information and to get your Paw Pass sticker visit the BUSU  office on the first floor of the Knowles Douglas Building. They are open Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Once you get your sticker, hit the town and soak up those discounts!

Brandon University Food Hall

BU has a new manager of Food Services, Nicholas Namespetra. Since taking over, Namespetra has been implementing changes based on consumer desires which has been getting recognition, including an article in the Brandon Sun. The Brandon Sun article was written in August and focused on the changes Namespetra was planning on implementing for the upcoming academic year. The article also discussed the survey that was sent to students, staff and faculty asking questions about what people wanted to see from the food hall. Healthier food? More grab and go? The survey also asked how often consumers used what was offered now, such as the soups or salad bar. In the Brandon Sun article, it was noted that students were asking for new choices, more vegan and vegetarian options and fresher food. 

Namespetra sat down with me to answer a few questions I had about the surveys and changes he had implemented, as the Brandon Sun article was published before the academic year started. Since getting more surveys back Namespetra found that people were wanting international food options, fresh food, and items that were sustainably sourced. He also found there was a desire for more grab and go options. There is now BU Fresh which is a grad and go option with things like salads, wraps and sandwiches. Namespetra also found students wanting better quality coffee, so Equator coffee was brought in. Equator Coffee Roasters roast fair trade, organic coffee. 

Namespetra can be found in the dining hall, talking to customers and asking them about their food experience, the taste of their food and any changes they would make to it. There was some boredom of the previous menu, so in the new menu there is more of a “build your own” concept, to be more flexible for customers. Food is made from scratch, not purchased pre-made and is of a higher quality when it is brought in pre-made. Namespetra is very eager to hear input on the changes being implemented in BU’s Food Hall and will make changes according to customer feedback. 

A Student’s Letter of Complaint to BUSU

At Brandon University we rely a lot on BUSU for a number of things, most commonly the Health and Dental Plan, and any problems or concerns we have with it. We also go to BUSU for the cheaper printing. 

A former member of the BUSU student council tried to get help from the office but was unable to. With permission, I have placed parts of the email in this article to show the main concerns of Jill Creasor, a recent graduate. 

Dear BUSU Council;

Hopefully this letter is being read out at the next BUSU Meeting, as it is directed to the Council. 

As the VPI for the 2016/17 school year and as a director before that, I have to say that this week has been a very disappointing week for me with BUSU. I graduated this year with my Bachelors in Education and this is my final week as a member of the Brandon University Student Union. I needed you twice this week and I was disappointed both times. 

On Wednesday morning at 9am, I came to the BUSU office to do some printing. As a new teacher I had many posters in colour that I wanted to print.… Unfortunately the office was closed. I knocked and there was no answer. I called the office number and there was no answer…

The second time came today. I went to go refill my prescriptions for the last time under my student plan, and I wasn’t able to. Again, the struggle to wait for the end of Sept pay is hard so I timed this prescription refill perfectly. Well, I thought it was perfect…That’s just absolute craziness to me. 

… When I really needed you to pull through for me and the union dues that I paid... you weren’t there. Thanks BUSU. Thank you for the last week of my official student status ending like this. Good job. 

Jillian Creasor

B.Ed 2019, B.Sc 2017

and the response from BUSU to Jill, which was fantastic that they got back to her, especially in less than a day, but it was woefully inaccurate and didn’t provide many clear answers. Especially as the response was referring to a completely different day than when Jill tried to go into the BUSU office. Here is some of the email that responded to Jill’s complaints; which is full of excuses unrelated to the actually day that was complained about. 

I won’t publish BUSU’s response as I don’t have permission, but I do hope that they address Jill’s concerns at their next meeting and openly to the rest of the students. 

Tips For New Students

As someone who has been new at three different universities in the past several years, I’ve learned a few things both academic and social that may be useful to students who are new to BU this year. Many of these tips are cliché, things you’ve heard a million times from adults in your life, but some of them are really useful.

First, take notes. For real, just do it. Preferably take notes by hand in classes you can keep up because when you write something by hand it has been proven to stay in your brain longer (thanks Dr. Holland). If you have to type them try to take the time that day to read them over. It will help you in the long run when it comes time for assignments or exams. 

Get to know your professors. Sit close to the front, go to office hours, introduce yourself. It might feel intimidating and like you are being a kiss-ass, but it helps if you miss class or an extension and the Professor knows who you are and has made a connection with you. If you are going to email a professor, make sure you put the title of the class in the subject line and introduce your email by calling them Dr. or Professor if they do not have their doctorate. 

Try to get to know one person in every class (the introvert in me cannot believe I am writing those words but there it is). It might sound cheesy but even if it is just the person you end up sitting nearest to it will come in handy if you have questions about an assignment or miss a class and need notes. It’s also just nice to have a familiar friendly face in every class. 

Join one club related to something you love or believe in. Even if you are someone who hates social situations, if you pick a club connected to something you enjoy it will not be as bad and you will meet people. University can feel lonely and isolating, especially when moving to somewhere new and knowing no one. It is a lot easier to survive university with a few friends. BU has so many different clubs and collectives that there is honestly something for everyone. Most departments have their own club, so that is a good place to start. Keep an eye out for BUSU’s club day at the start of every term and posters around campus for events hosted by clubs that you might enjoy. 

Get help. Whether you are struggling with multiple choice tests, essay writing, or your mental health, get help. BU offers a ton of services and workshops for students who are struggling. These services are free and available either through the entire year, or periodically. Many students struggle their first year, especially with writing multiple choice tests and their mental health. University is a tough environment so reach out to whoever you need to get you through. Workshops, counsellors, a free gym membership, and clubs offering peer support can all be great resources, use them. 

Self-care. Something we hear a lot about these days that usually brings the image of some person in the bathtub using a bath bomb, but that isn’t always what it looks like. Sometimes it looks like a night off school with friends going to a movie or for supper or binging an entire series on Netflix by yourself. Whatever it looks like for you, make time for it. Burning yourself out for school is not worth it and you won’t do as well academically. Make sure you take that time for yourself as often as needed. 

Find a study spot. Find that once place that you can study and go there. Whether it is a quiet spot in the library, a table at forbidden flavours, or a spot around Brandon, use it. I always found that I couldn’t study at home. As soon as I went home, I got nothing done because I always procrastinated by cleaning or doing absolutely anything else. It is also helpful to find a study strategy that works. This is another workshop BU offers that can help you try out different strategies and find one that works. I like to study in bursts. So, I will set an alarm on my phone for 20 minutes, and study until the alarm goes off. Then I give myself 10 minutes to do whatever I want, social media, Netflix, but once that ten minutes is up it is back to studying. Maybe you prefer to sit down for hours and just get stuff done, or maybe you need to read while doing something active like being on a treadmill. Find what works and do it. 

These are just a few tips and thoughts for new students, or students who have been here a while but haven’t developed the best habits. University life can be stressful and challenging, but getting to know people on campus, creating good habits, and reaching out for help when it is needed are all great places to start.

A New School Year Is Here

A new school year is upon us! That means that soon the hallways of the university will be filled with students rushing to those early morning classes. However, with the start of a new semester comes new opportunities. Indeed, Brandon University has no shortage of extra curricular activities to dive into to. Numerous clubs and groups can be found all across campus. One of the best ways to make sure your post secondary years are both enjoyable and memorable is to get involved in the campus community. By becoming a member of a club that interests you, you'll be able to plan, attend and organize a variety of activities associated with that organization. On top of giving you something to do besides studying, involving yourself in a university club also looks amazing on a resume. Whatever your interests or goals are, there's a club on campus for you!

One of these "campus clubs" happens to be The Quill, Brandon University's very own student newspaper. Founded back in 1910, The Quill is one of the oldest student newspapers in Western Canada. We publish bi-weekly throughout the school year, with newspaper stands found all across campus. As with the beginning of every school year, The Quill is looking for students who are passionate about writing and journalism to join the team. New writers start off as a junior reporter and contribute material that is featured in the physical newspaper and our online editions. Students can choose what they want to write about, as long as it has relevance to the campus community. Students also choose how much they write and when they want to contribute material. That means there's no commitment or expectation for material on a regular basis. You choose when you want to write!

Not only does writing for The Quill polish up your resume it also pays cold hard cash! That's right, writers at The Quill are paid for the material they contribute towards the newspaper. At the end of each semester that total amount of words written are added up into one document. The percentage of words that you have written is the percentage that you get paid, based on the total money available for the semester.  The more you write the more you get paid!

If joining The Quill sounds like something you'd be interested in, ( who wouldn't be, right?) then sign up to be part of the team. In order to become a junior reporter you can either email the Editor-in-Chief at or visit our office on campus. The Quill office is located on the second floor inside the Knowles-Douglas building, the same building that the BUSU office is located in. Pay us a visit to learn more about your student newspaper and see student journalism at its best!

Loss Of A Local Legend

Recipient of the Brandon University Senate Lifetime Achievement Award Doris Pratt otherwise known as Duzahan Mani Win passed away on March 6th, 2019.  

Previously in October of 2017 The Quill wrote upon Elder Doris Pratt’s dedication to the preserving the Dakota Culture and her influence upon the educational system that earned her both regard and the Lifetime Achievement Award at Homecoming of 2017. Elder Doris Pratt was an Educational Elder Advisor for Sioux Valley Education, and had been involved in educational administration for three decades. She leaves behind a legacy of literary works such as  “Dakota Imakhmakhapi Woyakapi: A Collection of Humour and Bravery” a collection of twenty five stories written in both English and Dakota, in addition to have written dictionaries and glossaries in her efforts to preserve the language and culture. Pratt dedicated fifty years of her life to her work.  

Elder Doris Pratt received traditional education consisting of educational teaching from her family and community knowledge carriers. She also earned a mainstream education from Brandon University resulting in the successful completion of a Master of Education, and additionally earned an Educational Specialist Degree from the University of Arizona. 

Elder Doris Pratt was 83 years old when she passed in her sleep at home at the Dakota Oyate Lodge personal care home. 

Barack Obama In Winnipeg

“You would pick now,” spoke a judicious Barack Obama in response to the hypothetical scenario of being able to live in any time in history. 

The statement was a nod to a young generation of people inspired to create change in the world today and a recognition of the efforts and contributions from those who came before. 

Social change was the theme at hand during “A Conversation with Barack Obama” at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg on Monday, March 4. Obama spoke in his trademark casual and intelligent manner, legs crossed, answering questions from Michael Burns, former CEO of the Invictus Games, who served as the evening’s moderator.

Obama talked first about family after moving out of the White House. When asked about his wife Michelle, his humble sense of humour set the tone for the evening. 

“Michelle, as you may have heard, wrote a book. It’s doing OK.”

He spoke indirectly of the current administration and President of the United States, expressing concern over nations electing leaders based on passion rather than fact.

“If citizens insist on integrity, if citizens insist on facts and if citizens participate, that’s how change happens,” he said.

He gave recognition to how informed young people are on current issues and their desire to be politically active, referring specifically to survivors of the mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Older generations need give them space and power to make a difference.

“Ultimately, change is going to come from the people,” he said on the importance of grassroots movements. Politicians can’t be expected to lead movements, he said, but they will “jump to the front” of an already moving march.

He also stressed that today’s activists need to recognize past heroes who have fought for civil rights.

Despite steep ticket prices, there were many young people amongst the around 13,500 in attendance. The message for social justice, though, is for all. 

Winnipeg was the first of three stops Obama made during his Canadian tour a few weeks back. He also paid visit to Calgary and Vancouver.