Celebrating Mitchell Brown

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Mitchell Brown is lovingly remembered in many ways. Fun-loving and often seen with a smile, he had a knack for making genuine connections with people. Hard-working and ambitious, he was also a recent Carleton graduate (BComm/14) and a promising Senior Accountant at Deloitte Canada. A loyal friend and caring young man, his love for the community and the people he surrounded himself with was unmistakable.

On July 2, 2015, Mitchell passed away suddenly, at the age of 24. In the sixteen months that have followed, Mitch’s love has lived on – both here on campus and throughout the community he so passionately served.

Mitchell attended high school and university in Ottawa and was actively involved in sports from a young age. Over the years, you might have found him on soccer fields across the city, playing for Sir Robert Borden High School, Carleton University intramurals and Nepean Hot Spurs teams.

In 2009, Mitchell attended Carleton University to pursue his longtime dream of becoming an accountant. It was here that his passion for business and sport came together in 2013, when he was selected to represent the Sprott School of Business Accounting team at the national JDC Central (JDCC) Business competition. This event is the only one of its kind that combines athletics, academics and social challenges in a highly skilled and competitive environment.

Today, Mitchell’s determination and sportsmanship will be celebrated through the newly established Mitch Brown Memorial Trophy that will be given out, for the first time, at the closing gala of JDCC Competition in January 2017. Each year, the trophy will be awarded to the sports delegate who best demonstrates the core values shared by both Mitch and the JDCC – a willingness to approach challenges head-on and compete with unwavering commitment.

This award is just one part of the legacy Mitch will leave behind.

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Here at Carleton, the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship was endowed in 2016 by Mitch’s friends and family and will exist in perpetuity to support an outstanding student in the Sprott School of Business every year.

Mitchell was adored by his friends and family. It is a testament to his legacy that, to date, $55,213 has been raised in his honour through the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship.

Last year, the caring and extraordinary generosity of those who loved Mitch was exemplified on campus. On December 1, 2015 – Carleton’s Giving Tuesday – the community Mitch lived to serve came together in 24 hours to raise over $3,700 in support of the scholarship. The Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship also received a record-breaking volume of online traffic through social media and Carleton’s crowdfunding platform, FutureFunder.ca.

Earlier this year, the first annual Mitchell Brown Memorial Golf Tournament was held in Mitch’s honour in July. Once again, the generosity of those closest to Mitch shone through, with over $6,000 raised in support of the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship.

The scholarship’s success has been a profound – and inspiring – example of a community coming together to celebrate Mitch’s life and accomplish good in the world.

Thanks to the incredible generosity of donors towards the fund, the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship was awarded for the first time, this year, to a bright and deserving fourth year Carleton student, Riley Savory. In his own words, “Being the first of many Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship recipients is truly an honour. Words can’t describe how thankful I am to receive this award, and how thankful I am to the donors of this scholarship to have helped make it possible. The Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship has continued to inspire me to apply myself to the fullest throughout school, work, and extracurricular activities, and it will help me see my way through my final year at Carleton”.

Above all, Mitch approached life with positivity, integrity, and enthusiasm. Through the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship, Mitch’s legacy lives on.

As 2016 comes to a close, we hope you will join us once again in paying tribute to Mitch’s legacy.

This Giving Tuesday, on November 29th, 2016, all gifts made to the Mitchell Brown Memorial Scholarship through FutureFunder.ca will be matched, dollar-for-dollar, up to a maximum of $1,000.

Once more, we have an opportunity to celebrate the life of a wonderful young man. Without a doubt, Mitchell’s passion, ambition, and love for the community will inspire and influence generations of Carleton students to come.

Meet Our Champions: Dan Fortin

The Champions series by Sarah Brown profiles those who are supporting social and economic good in society. This is Carleton’s founding premise and it’s being celebrated on the cusp of the university’s 75th anniversary in 2017. Learn more about Carleton’s most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together, we’re #HereforGood. 

Dan Fortin photographed in Toronto 2016 by Chris Roussakis

 

Dan Fortin, BEng/78, LLD/09, stepped straight out of university and into a job with IBM, launching a high-tech career that saw him take on increasingly challenging management roles in the company, retiring as president of IBM Canada in 2014. Throughout his career he has always carved out time to get involved with philanthropic and not-for-profit causes. Says Fortin: “I find it a privilege to be asked to help. I get a tremendous amount of joy and satisfaction from giving back.”

Fortin sits on Carleton’s Board of Governors and uses his considerable skills as a champion for the Fund for Good. His goal is a lofty one — work with his fellow alumni to raise $1 million to fund students looking to get involved in experiential learning opportunities. “This campaign is so exciting because it is so diverse,” says Fortin, who envisions students from all faculties having the opportunity to undertake in-depth research studies, internships, and overseas learning.

Carleton U. supporter Dan Fortin gives his take on what makes his alma mater so awesome — and plays a quick game of Would You Rather:

Alma Matters

As a teen, my favourite books… were written by Wilbur Smith. I’ve actually been reading his books for more than 40 years. He’s a historical novelist from Africa. His work is fictional, but he has created a couple of different families and his novels follow their lives through the 18th century. What was it like to go on an elephant-hunting trip way back then? What was it like in the diamond mines? I’d wait for his books to come out and set them aside for when I had vacation time.

If I could start all over again at Carleton, I would… study engineering just like I did the first time around. It was perfect for me. The unique thing about the engineering program when I was there was that it was a cross-disciplinary until my final year. We were all in together. There was such a richness in doing it this way.

Education is so important because… you learn to learn. And once you’ve got that mastered, you can accomplish so much.

I give back because… Carleton University is a unique institution. It offers many interdisciplinary degrees, which I think is so important. The university leads the way in this, and I’m extremely proud of what it’s doing. The world today is interdisciplinary and collaborative.

Dan Fortin photographed in Toronto 2016 by Chris Roussakis

 

Would You Rather?  

Given that engineers are renowned for having adventurous spirits, we challenge you, Dan Fortin, to a series of “would you rather” questions in honour of Carleton University’s 75th birthday in 2017.

Would you rather… go back in time to a Panda Game from your undergrad years or enjoy a front-row seat at the 2017 game?

Fortin: I’d love to go back to 1978. I can’t even begin to describe what the game was like in the 70s, and that will never be repeated, so it would be fun to relive it.

Would you rather… live for a year in the underground tunnels or in a tent on the shores of the Canal?

Fortin: I don’t know if I’d want to live in the tunnels for a whole year — they’re a bit humid and dark — but they are unique. To have the insight to build the tunnels was great. As a student, I thought it was amazing that I didn’t have to trudge into class with boots and a coat — you just popped in and there you were.

Would you rather… spend an afternoon with infamous Carleton alumnus Conrad Black or famous alumnus Dan Aykroyd? Michael Cowpland or Karim Rashid?

Fortin: Definitely Dan Aykroyd. Imagine what his time at university was like! I’d love to know what impact university life had on him. For the second duo, I’ve had the opportunity to meet Mr. Cowpland so I’ll go with Karim Rashid. He’s a unique individual who thinks outside the box and is very creative.

Would you rather… design a new building to celebrate Carleton’s 75th or a state-of-the-art laboratory? 

Fortin: I’d have to go with the lab. Perhaps not a lab in the classic sense, but it would be fun to think up more of a design lab with collaborative spaces.

Would you rather… party like it’s 1978 or 2017?

Fortin: In 1978 I partied lots, but that was then and this is now. I’m really looking forward to Carleton’s celebrations of 2017. I haven’t yet lived 2017, so I can’t wait for that.

Meet Our Champions: Dr. Chris Carruthers

The Champions series by Sarah Brown profiles those who are supporting social and economic good in society. This is Carleton’s founding premise and it’s being celebrated on the cusp of the university’s 75th anniversary in 2017. Learn more about Carleton’s most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together, we’re Here for Good. 

Dr. Chris Caruthers, Carleton University

 

He’s the Chair of Carleton University’s Board of Governors and has taken on a leading role in raising awareness and funds for the new Academic Health Sciences Building. Dr. Chris Carruthers, BSc/64, received two post-graduate degrees after leaving Carleton, but has always maintained strong ties to his original alma mater.

His background as a physician makes Dr. Carruthers a natural to champion the new Health Sciences program and the state-of-the-art Academic Health Sciences Building that will house it. “We can’t keep spending all our money on the delivery of health,” he explains. “We have to analyze population health, study how to predict and prevent health crises, and anticipate what the future holds.”

Here’s why Chris Carruthers, health-care consultant, former chief of staff at The Ottawa Hospital, and Chair of Carleton’s Board of Governors, gives back:

Lessons Learned and Life Advice (Courtesy of the Carleton Years)

On Success — And Paying it Forward

Success is a supportive family — you want your kids to achieve their own success and that has worked out well for me.

True success is also recognizing that if you’ve been fortunate in your career and life, you should give back. Carleton was my first university. It was a great experience. Some of my closest friends are the ones I went to Carleton with — four came down for this year’s Panda Game! I want to give back to this community.

On the Importance of Education — And Having a Good Time

I think of education as a ladder to the career you want. For many jobs, you need to have a degree just to get a foot in the door. But people sometimes forget that the experience of getting an education is just as important as the education itself. What we talk about all of those years after we graduate is the friendships and fun we had. It’s the whole package of university that makes the person.

On What to Study in Undergrad

Obviously you should take what you want — you have to have a passion and a direction. But, honestly, I’d counsel any new student to throw in a business course and a computer course if they can fit it into their timetable. I think everyone should have some basic business and computer understanding before they head out into the world.

Dr. Chris Carruthers, Carleton University

Dr. Chris Carruthers, BSc/64, outside the in-construction Health Sciences Building in October 2016.

Lightning Round: The Five Ws

Who inspired you as an undergrad?

Professor Nesbitt, who was the head of science at my time, was a real dynamo. Professor John ApSimon [who received the Founders Award in 2014 after 52 years at Carleton University] is also a professor I still remember and think about.

What makes Carleton University stand out?

It’s a great package — it gives students that combination of a great education and a great environment. There’s a strong sense of community.

When you think about favourite university memories, what comes to mind?

I should probably say the classes I took and the knowledge I gained, but really it was the friends I met, the social times, the football games. Those stay with you.

Where is your favourite spot on campus?

The library and the quad area. I did a lot of studying at the library, but it was also a social hub and meeting place.

Why give back?

I have a fundamental belief that I have been fortunate and should give back. Where I channel my efforts is in institutions I’m close to — that includes Carleton. Because I’m on the Board of Governors, I spend a lot of time here — I joke that my unofficial office is the Tims in the River Building.

Photos by Olga Janina.

Meet Our Champions: Linda Ann Daly

The Champions series by Sarah Brown profiles those who are supporting social and economic good in society. This is Carleton’s founding premise and it’s being celebrated on the cusp of the university’s 75th anniversary in 2017. Learn more about Carleton’s most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together, we’re Here for Good. 

Linda Ann Daly, Carleton University

 

Linda Ann Daly, BA/71, has always been a Carleton enthusiast. Growing up in the small south-east Ontario community of Ingleside, she was accepted to a number of universities but, “even at 18 I somehow sensed that Carleton was the perfect fit for me — I was so thrilled to study here.”

Her commitment to her alma mater continued over the years, but was rekindled in a very personal way by a special student. Rodrigo Pereira arrived at the Kingston home of Linda Ann and her husband, Walter Fenlon, in 2009 as a high school Rotary scholar. They hosted the Brazilian student for four months, connecting with him deeply. When it was time for Pereira to return home, the couple offered to help support him if he wanted to return to Canada for university. Rodrigo would go on to enroll in the Sprott School of Business, enjoying three years as a popular and engaged student before his life was tragically cut short by cancer in 2014.

Today Linda Ann Daly is on the Board of Governors and chairs the Community Relations and Advancement Committee. She and her husband launched the International Student Emergency Fund in Memory of Rodrigo Pereira to help provide short-term financial assistance to international students facing a personal emergency situation.

Walter Fenlon remembers Rodrigo Pereira. Fenlon and Linda Ann Daly were inspired by one incredible student to support other international students.

Walter Fenlon remembers Rodrigo Pereira. Fenlon and Linda Ann Daly were inspired by one incredible student to support other international students.

 

Here, Linda Ann Daly remembers the student who inspired that fund:

On Meeting Rodrigo Pereira When He was a High School Student

In 2009, my husband and I decided to host an international Rotary student, who turned out to be Rodrigo. He stayed with us for four months while he went to high school in Kingston. I still remember contacting Rodrigo’s mother before he arrived. I asked her if she had any advice because I had never been a parent. She wrote back a beautiful note in which she said: “Keep him close, but let him fly. He’s a born leader.” She was so right.

The Importance of the International Student Emergency Fund in Memory of Rodrigo Pereira

Knowing Rodrigo helped me to understand just how vulnerable international students are. Many of them don’t have a lot of money and they can’t just get on the bus and go home or have Mum and Dad pick them up if there’s an emergency. When I joined the Board of Governors, my husband and I set up this fund and made it in Rodrigo’s honour. After he died, it became in memory of Rodrigo. His death came as a shock to us — we expected him to live; we expected him to come back to Carleton to finish his degree.

Carleton’s Continuing Connection with the Pereira Family

Rodrigo died in August 2014. Even though he was very ill, he live-streamed the graduation of his classmates that summer and sent them a note of congratulations. That’s the kind of man he was. He said to me, “I didn’t know if all of my classmates would make it through, and I’m so proud of them.” We were so proud to host his family in Kingston last summer — the highlight was when Carleton University granted Rodrigo his degree posthumously. It meant so much. And now his name continues with this important fund.

Rodrigo Pereira received his degree post-humously. A special ceremony was held in his honour.

Rodrigo Pereira received his degree post-humously. A special ceremony was held in his honour.

 

The 5 Ws:

Who, at Carleton, has inspired you? President and Vice-Chancellor Roseann O’Reilly Runte. I find her to be a visionary. She’s also very real and very sincere. She understands the subtle nuances of saying thank you — she is appreciative and acknowledges everyone’s effort for Carleton.

What is your top Carleton memory? That’s easy! Winning the Panda Game when I was an undergrad.

When are you most engaged? Every June, I participate in a convocation ceremony. It’s such a proud moment when I see the graduating students and hand out awards.

Where is your favourite spot on campus? I don’t have one favourite spot. For me, it’s the overall setting — looking out over the canal.

Why give back? Because Carleton University has such a fantastic culture of inclusiveness. Everyone is given the chance to excel, and I value and love that sentiment.

 

Linda Ann Daly, Carleton University

 

 

Meet Our Champions: Nik Nanos

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“Being in the line of work I’m in, I have a significant amount of respect for journalists and good journalism.”

The Champions series by Sarah Brown profiles those who are supporting social and economic good in society. This is Carleton’s founding premise and that spirit carries on and is being celebrated on the cusp of the university’s 75th anniversary in 2017. Learn more about Carleton’s most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together, we’re Here for Good. 

He’s best know as the man behind Nanos Research, one of North America’s premier polling and research organizations. No surprise, then, that Nik Nanos has focused his support for Carleton University on the journalism school — raising awareness and funds for the G. Stuart Adam Graduate Award in Journalism. “Being in the line of work I’m in, I have a significant amount of respect for journalists and good journalism,” explains Nanos. “This award is one way of making sure we enable journalism students to have the best research skills possible.”

Named after professor emeritus Dr. G. Stuart Adam, the scholarship provides funds to allow a graduate student to go out into the field to work on a larger, investigative piece of journalism. “Any opportunity we can give a student to do more research is well-invested,” says Nanos, who hopes that the award, launched last year, will become self-sustaining. As a member of the Board of Governors and Vice-Chair of its Community Relations and Advancement Committee, he’s determined to make it happen.

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Pollster and Carleton U. supporter Nik Nanos gives his take on success, research, and living outside his comfort zone:

I’m a big believer in… challenging myself. You shouldn’t think that just because you’re very good in a particular area that you can’t learn more. By pushing yourself outside your comfort zone, you always learn something.

Every day, I… try to meet or talk to someone interesting. I actually keep a list of people I’d like to meet just because they’re interesting people. It doesn’t have to relate to the research projects I’m working on — when you meet someone who teaches you something new, it lifts your day.

I really enjoy… being a guest lecturer. There’s always a student who asks you a question you hadn’t thought of. It gives you a different perspective.

The best advice I would give a new student is… to treat school like a job. By that I mean wake up in the morning and have a plan for your day. Just like a job, you shouldn’t work 24 hours a day, but you have to put your time in. Going to the library should be like going to the office. If you have that level of discipline, you will be rewarded accordingly.

If I had more time… I would spend it digging into the data. As we expand, I am getting involved with multiple companies and work teams. I love being immersed in data — those extra little nuggets of info help me better understand things.

The Nanos Poll

As you may know, Carleton University turns 75 in 2017. Do you agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree or disagree with each of the following statements regarding this institution?

  • “A gift to Carleton is ultimately a gift through Carleton towards a greater good,” according to Roseann O’Reilly Runte, president and vice-chancellor.

Nanos: Agree.

  • Carleton has grown into a dynamic research and teaching institution.

Nanos: Agree.

  • Graduates should not wait until the end of their careers to give back. 

Nanos: Agree.

  • A Nanos Poll would prove the success of Carleton’s fundraising strategies.

Nanos: Disagree. We already know Carleton’s fundraising is very successful. Save your money on the research — give it to the school instead!

Join Nik today in supporting journalism students by donating to the G. Stuart Graduate Award in Journalism.

The Champions: Meet Norah Vollmer

 

She arrived at Carleton University as a student in 1992 and has found it impossible to leave. Norah Vollmer, BAHons/96, does double-duty on campus, working as manager of faculty affairs in the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic) while completing her graduate diploma in public management through the School of Public Policy and Administration.

Norah received bursaries as a third and fourth year undergraduate student. “It meant a lot to me that someone believed in me, was willing to help me, and ultimately saw potential in me,” she says, adding that it was only in retrospect that she realized that the money came from administrators, faculty, and alumni of Carleton. A contributor to the Campus Community Campaign Bursary fund, which consists of financial-need based awards to undergraduate students, Norah is also involved with the Scholars at Risk campaign.

Here’s what makes Carleton University ally Norah Vollmer tick:

I was a kid who enjoyed… reading!

For me, success is… making things work efficiently and effectively. Lately, I have been reading a lot of books about productivity and I am inspired by Martin Luther King Jr.’s statement “I am afraid that many among you are more concerned about making a living than making a life.” I think making a life is how I would like to measure my success.

I am happiest when… my new puppy sits rather than barking insanely at other dogs, people running, and people with wheels — bikes, motorcycles, or skateboards.

Education is so important because… it opens doors, and your mind.

The best advice I would give to a new student is…. to ask questions. Make sure you understand the assignments. Take advantage of all of the opportunities on campus — lectures, the art gallery, as well as the many people on campus who want to see you succeed.

 

Norah Volmer, Carleton University. Photo: Chris Roussakis

 

Lightning Round: The Five Ws

Who has inspired you recently? Dr. Hossein Raeesi, the Iranian scholar and human rights lawyer who came to Carleton through the Scholars at Risk network. He and his family have made huge sacrifices to try to make the world a more peaceful place.

What degree (other than English) do you wish you had taken? All of them! But art history is first on my list for my “next degree.”

When is your favourite season on campus? The fall. September is so exciting. When you work at a university, you get to experience that back-to-school rush every year.

Where is your favourite spot on campus? There are many! I’ll mention Dundas residence because it was the first building I saw when I arrived from Toronto. I didn’t know anyone because I had worked for a year after high school to save money for university and had mostly lost track of my high school friends. I was a little anxious about having a roommate, but she was great. I should not have worried.

Why give back? Because someone believed in me. In my third and fourth years, I applied for bursaries and was successful. I had to provide a budget (which was probably a very good exercise in managing my funds) and a short essay. I’m not sure who read it, but I certainly put my heart and soul into that essay. It meant a lot to me that someone was willing to help me and ultimately saw potential in me.

Norah Vollmer, Carleton University. Photo by Chris Roussakis

 

The Champions series by Sarah Brown features supporters of special projects around campus and profiles those who are supporting social and economic good in society. This is Carleton’s founding premise and that spirit carries on and is being celebrated on the cusp of the university’s 75th anniversary in 2017. Learn more about Carleton’s most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign. Together, we’re Here for Good. 

Carleton Leaves Imprint on the World After Most Generous Year

Sarah McRae still wears the jewelry she bought in the Massai Community of Tanzania.

Although they are stunning pieces, it’s the experience that still takes her breath away, months later.

“I was able to sit down and learn who these people are,” she said. “It was special and it was beautiful.”

McRae, an International Business student at Carleton, traveled with an interdisciplinary team of students to work on the ground with community residents in multiple villages in Northern Tanzania, in January. Their mission was to learn more about the chronic water shortage in this area and how it can be combatted.

The Buckets to Rain Barrels project was fully-funded by donors on Carleton’s award-winning crowdfunding website futurefunder.ca.

Upon their return, the students presented original solutions to the problem to a live audience at Carleton that was simultaneously telecast to key stakeholders in the Longido District. Now, phase two of the project is underway, ensuring that Carleton students will continue to make a lasting impact in the developing world.

This is just one example of how Carleton students are enacting real-life change and how donors are enabling them to do so.

As its 2014-2015 fiscal year comes to a close, Carleton University is celebrating its best single fundraising year in the school’s history. But, it is not only a celebration of the $25 million in donations that have been raised for new programs, student aid and research; we are celebrating that gifts through Carleton have made a tangible impact in our school, our community and around the world.

“This experience changed my life,” said McRae. It brought such insight into the role of international business and international development. It was an authentic experience and a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

After graduating in June, McRae will be traveling to Madagascar to work on a microfinance project. “I think my experience with Buckets to Rain Barrels was a major factor in being accepted into this youth fellowship program that only accepts 25 Canadians,” she said.

Carleton is spreading its wings in other parts of the world, too.

In December, thanks to another crowdfunding success, students traveled to the end of the earth for a hands-on learning experience in Antarctica with leading scientists, researchers and other students from around the globe.

Carleton also raised over $90,000 in 24 hours in its second year participating in Giving Tuesday—a global initiative that is aimed at rallying philanthropic and volunteer support around the world.

After a record-breaking year of philanthropic support for the program, the Ravens Men’s Basketball Team brought home their 11th CIS championship title, further proving that Carleton University is a leader in Canadian post-secondary athletics.

It is clear that when it comes to creating a culture of philanthropy on and off campus, Carleton is succeeding.

The total for the 2014-’15 fiscal year is almost 20 per cent more than Carleton’s previous best year in 2001-’02.

The unparalleled year in fundraising is just the beginning on what promises to be an exciting new chapter for Carleton University.