Researchers and scholars made room for potential colleagues on Wednesday when some 600 students from high schools across Niagara poured into Brock University.The University hosted two major orientation events — its annual History Day, as well as Science, Health Sciences and Kinesiology Day — as students from 19 public and Catholic high schools got a taste of life at Brock.The visitors got to take in a lecture in their respective disciplines, experience active work in Brock labs and seminars and generally get a pure sense of the post-secondary experience.E.L. Crossley Secondary School students Lauren Dudzik and Sofia Labricciosa test equipment in Brock’s High Performance Centre during a visit to the main campus Wednesday, Dec. 5.“It gives us a good feel for what we’re getting into,” said Sofia Labricciosa, a Grade 11 student from E.L. Crossley Secondary School in Pelham, who was among the science-stream participants.With Brock’s Health Sciences programs on her radar, Labricciosa said her visit, which included time in labs and Brock’s High Performance Centre, was invaluable.“There are a lot of new facilities at Brock and a lot of opportunities available here,” she said. “This experience will help me make a clear decision of the direction I want to go in when the time comes.”Science Day participants first took in a Biology lecture before moving on to Chemistry, Biology, Oenology and Viticulture, Health Sciences, Earth Sciences and Physical Health and Literacy labs.For students more focused on Humanities, the day included a History lecture followed by a related seminar discussion with their peers.“Many local students have been on campus for athletics or other events, but this visit allows us to show them what Brock has to offer academically,” said Brock Recruitment and Liaison Officer Courtney Keogh. That experience, she said, can be a big benefit for students who have already expressed an interest in certain areas of study.“We had a few groups participate who are Health and Wellness Specialist High Skills Majors,” Keogh said. “They’ve dedicated their time in high school to pursuing that field, and now we can show them what their next steps will look like if they continue on that path here at Brock.”In addition to lectures, labs and seminars, students participated in campus tours led by current Brock students.The University continues to build momentum after a banner fall that yielded record enrolment of more than 19,000 students for the 2018-19 school year and saw Brock ranked third in Canada for student experience among comprehensive universities by Maclean’s Magazine.Brock also shattered its Fall Preview Day attendance record Nov. 4, with more than 5,300 prospective students and family members touring campus with interest.While recruitment teams continue to spread word about the Brock experience at various schools and events across the province and even across the globe, there’s nothing quite like witnessing the campus atmosphere in person, said Beth Natale, Director of Recruitment and Retention.“We can tell the story much more fully when prospective students come to campus,” she said. “They can try life on as a Brock student, move between various learning settings and experience a lecture, lab or seminar.“Seeing and feeling it for yourself is a much more lasting and memorable experience. It has a huge impact.”Natale’s team wants to help students recognize that Brock is an accessible institution filled with a community of people looking to guide them towards success.“It’s about breaking down some of those perceptions of university and helping students to understand this is completely doable,” she said. “We want to see our learners succeed and we will do what we can to help get them from Point A to Point B.”The next recruitment event takes place Thursday, Dec. 13, when the University welcomes dozens of guidance counsellors from across Hamilton and Niagara to get an up-close look at the rich Brock experience.Any high school groups looking to come to campus, even outside of the recruitment team’s current offerings, are invited to contact Keogh to discuss opportunities at [email protected]“We’re all about developing more programming and more relationships on campus, so we welcome people to get in touch,” she said.
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(Roy Keane won 67 caps with Ireland as a player — David Davies/PA Archive/Press Association Images)Admittedly, his subsequent time spent as Ipswich boss was an unequivocal disappointment, marred by a series of transfer flops, in which he took a side pushing for promotion and turned them into relegation candidates.So Keane failed at Ipswich. Just as Brendan Rodgers failed at Reading. And Harry Redknapp failed at Southampton. And Mauricio Pochettino came a cropper at Espanyol. Yet the latter three managers are still considered highly astute, whereas somehow Keane’s name is mud in British football. He’s known as a coach who “needs money,” as Alex Ferguson recently stated, to have any hope of thriving in management. Of course, Keane and O’Neill could be complete failures, but so could Guus Hiddink or anyone else brave/crazy enough to accept a job that even one of Ireland’s own players has gone so far as to label a “poisoned chalice”. Hence, if Graham Taylor thought the England position was an “impossible job,” then surely the Irish role must, by comparison, seem suited solely to people willing to offer themselves up as a form of human piñata.There have been several fans and commentators very quick to cast aspersions, in particular, on Keane’s lack of success as a coach, but can his time at Sunderland really be considered an outright failure? People are very eager to focus on the negative elements of his tenure there, but it’s often overlooked that he took a side short on confidence in the Championship relegation zone and promptly got them promoted to the Premier League. Granted, he was far from spectacularly successful thereafter, but Sunderland haven’t exactly thrived since he left. In fact, they have steadily gotten worse and this year, are strong candidates for relegation back to the very position from which Keane rescued them. THE TRAPATTONI ERA, as has been pointed out before on this site, was like a bad cover version of the Charlton years.Sure, we reached the Euros, we watched the countless player fallings out and acquired a certain amount of success playing a very basic style of football, but unlike Charlton’s time in charge, there was almost always a sense of irrevocable joylessness characterising the Italian manager’s tenure.Whereas under Charlton, the highpoint was qualifying for a major tournament in the form of Italia 90, with Trapattoni, making the Euros was arguably the most depressing experience of his entire time in charge.So in musical terms, if Charlton was Lou Reed’s original 1972 version of ‘Perfect Day,’ Trapattoni was the star-studded but ultimately hollow remake that topped the charts in 1997 — orchestrated by an individual with a great track record, but whose best days were now patently behind him.And if anything, the soon-to-be-appointed Roy Keane/Martin O’Neill coalition is Irish football’s equivalent of the late singer’s Metal Machine Music album — it’s a bold, experimental, somewhat baffling, last desperate bid at greatness, whose key figures have enjoyed highly successful careers that sadly appear to be winding down.Granted, it’s hugely risky appointment, but be honest with yourself. Would you really rather see anyone else get the job? Fans complained that the Trapattoni era lacked entertainment value, so Keane and O’Neill look like the perfect antidote to the predominantly bland style imposed by the Italian, where the only thing more tedious than watching the team play was spending time listening to his half-baked jargon during press conferences and post-match interviews. Nevertheless, Keane’s prospective appointment is not the first time a big decision made by Martin O’Neill has been doubted. One of his first orders of business as Celtic boss was to sign Chris Sutton. The Englishman had previously been bought for £10million by Chelsea in 1999 (a lot of money in those days) and flopped so badly that he now makes the same club’s infamous £50 million purchase of Fernando Torres look unbelievably astute by comparison.O’Neill, however, was adamant that he was signing the striker. Celtic majority shareholder Dermot Desmond, on the other hand, was reluctant to part with the £6million required for Sutton’s services, just as the FAI are now presumably unsure whether the Keane appointment is a good idea. But O’Neill told Desmond in no uncertain terms whose judgement mattered the most in that instance, and he was ultimately proven right, with the English forward going on to enjoy a highly successful career at Celtic Park.So if given a choice of whether to listen to the doom-and-gloom merchants or O’Neill, I know who I’d trust, and it’s likely many fans would also back the 61-year-old.Yet perhaps most importantly of all, for the first time arguably in years, there is a sense of excitement and optimism surrounding the Irish team. Perhaps it will turn out to be misplaced, but even the most hard-hearted cynic would struggle not to be somewhat enticed by the inherent romance emanating from this latest improbable development.And my advice for those people that are still unmoved by this prospect? Take a walk on the wild side.‘I want to go to the press conferences’ – Dunphy on Keane’s Irish link>Keane and O’Neill scheduled for ITV duty in San Sebastian this week>