Monday, January 30, 2012

Academic Link, Alexandre Brandt receives 2012 Peer Mentor Award

On Thursday, January 26, 2012 four international students received a Salad King International Student Award.  As a residence community, we are thrilled to highlight the work of Alexandre Brandt, a 3rd year film student and second year academic link is this year's recipient of the Peer Mentor Award.
 The Salad King International Student Awards are sponsored by Mr. Ernest and Mrs. Linda Liu, owners of the popular Salad King Restaurant.   The Salad King International Student Awards focus on recognizing international student leadership during their time at Ryerson.  By establishing the annual Salad King International Student Awards, Ernest and Linda Liu demonstrate that Ryerson's neighbours can make a difference in the lives of international students.
Alexandre was recognized as a strong role model by both the Academic Link team as well his students. He displays that he cares deeply about his academic success and encourages others to take their academics seriously.   He is passionate about art, good food and making others aware of his Swiss heritage and global experiences.   He has an open heart and is willing to share stories about his life in Switzerland as well as his many travel adventures from around the world.   He encourages his peers to dig deeper and feel inspired by what they do and who they are. Students have come to respect Alexandre for his opinions, creativity and support.  This year, Alexandre has led several groups of Image Arts students to the AGO and ROM to assist them in gaining an early start on a project due in their second term.  This summer, he will invite other students to join him in Italy at a music festival that he films annually to gain a rich experience abroad.  In addition to his work in Student Housing Services, Alexandre also received the award for his scholastic achievements.  His nomination was also supported by Professor Brian Damude, Chair of Image Arts, who spoke highly of this Alexandre's academic achievements over the course of the past two years.

Please join us in celebrating the work of our campus partners and Ryerson neighbours!  Thank you to Salad King and the International Student Services for highlighting the exceptional campus and community involvement of International Students.   

 Congrats, Alexandre!

Friday, January 20, 2012

RUamped Blog – Christine Diamantopoulos

On the first night of the RUamped conference, walking into a room filled with a bunch of students who didn’t know each other, I never would have expected to walk out the next day feeling really great and having created awesome relationships with a ton of new people.

The first night’s activities were only warm up for what part two of the conference had in store for us student leaders. We warmed up to each other with some icebreaker games, making it feel like leadership camp, which I guess it kind of was.  The keynote speaker was really impressive. It was amazing to see how a genre of music could really instill hope into someone’s life and lead them on a completely different life path.

Overall, day one was a success, and very relaxed compared to day two. Day two was intense and emotional, but also a really good experience.

In four presentations, we learned about how not to use digital media (basically a reminder to not put party pictures on Facebook), we learned how to work together with people who’s personalities may clash, about the importance of diversity, and understanding that there is a lot more to every person than meets the eye.

For me, the biggest thing that I gained was a connection to new people. In the Breakthrough presentation, you could literally feel tension and emotions floating in the room. It was a crazy experience. People were getting deep with each other, and we talked about things that normally we wouldn’t want to share with the general public. We all stepped outside of our comfort zones, and at first it was hard, but an amazing change was felt afterwards. We were all connected to each other because we then were able to understand that everyone has an untold story that has affected their life.

After RUamped, I feel inspired to become a better and stronger leader, and really understand the quote “There is no one you can’t love after you’ve heard their story.” Those just might be the truest words ever spoken, and words that everyone should learn to understand.