2015 Road Warrior Series: Nick Pankerichan

Posted: Monday, September 28, 2015 - 11:20

Nick Pankerichan, one of the truest Guelph gryphons you will ever come across! His feet have been planted on the university campus for many years, having completed an undergrad degree in Geography, then almost immediately joining the Liaison Officer team. Now the head Liaison Officer - Secondary School Recruitment, he refuses to leave his Guelph family, and his 'home'. If you attended the Ontario Universities' Fair this past weekend, you may have seen him roaming the UofG booth or in one of our presentations, where you would have undoubtedly witnessed his love for the University of Guelph. Nick.jpg

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

From the moment I stepped foot on campus, I felt a part of a caring and supportive community - it was my home away from home. Little did I know; I would soon call it my home. There is a feeling on this campus that you can’t really explain until you visit.  And once I was here, it was really hard for me to leave.  Everyone is not only passionate about the University of Guelph, but every student and employee takes pride in making a difference by trying to change lives and improve life around them!

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

Most of my time was spent in the W.F Mitchell Athletic Centre - I played on the varsity basketball team for 5 years and had the honor of being named team captain for 4 of those years. For me, it wasn’t just about winning games; it was about the effort and dedication that my teammates, my brothers, made day in and day out to reach a common goal. And although we never won a championship, the memories and friendships I built will last forever. Guelph meant so much to me, that not only do I get to travel across Canada to speak to students about the possibility of living and learning at the University of Guelph, but I am also entering my 7th year as an assistant coach with the Varsity Men’s basketball team.

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

My entire life has revolved around working with people, more specifically, students! This job not only provides me with the opportunity to guide students and their families during an important stage of their life, but I also get to talk to them about one of my favourite places in the world, the University of Guelph! I believe education is the most powerful tool to solve all of our problems. Our students are our future and they hold the keys to help make the world a better place!

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Your university days will be the best days of your life. There are so many different universities to choose from and degree programs to study. The most important thing to consider is finding a place where you will not only learn for the next 4 years, but live as well. Make sure you go to as many presentations and ask as many questions as you can!  But most importantly, visit the campus!  There is not one best university out there, but there is one best university for you!  Make sure you embrace and enjoy every minute of this process and I wish you all the best of luck in your future endeavors!

He's already been shipped out on the road for the Fall semester and is busy chatting up the University of Guelph to high school students. So keep a feel out for his Guelph gryphon vibe, he could be coming your way!

2015 Road Warrior Series: Thisakya Gunaratne

Posted: Wednesday, September 23, 2015 - 08:51

Thisakya, you can call her Tizy, has also been a Road Warrior for the University of Guelph a few years back. But yet again, she knew there's no place like 'home'! With her enthusiastic personality, and accompanying humour, she is bound to capture your attention when she arrives at your school. And, we're so excited to have her back on our team and heading on the road to share her passion for the Guelph community. Tizy's head shot in the garden, yellow flowers behind her.

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

The sense of community was what drew me to Guelph most. I was never intimidated by the size of this school. As an international student, I had to make sure that I felt safe and at home. Students, staff, professors all made me feel welcome! Not to mention, the food is pretty fantastic!

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

I was an O – Week volunteer for 3 consecutive years. Also a senior peer helper for the center for international programs, and the office of intercultural affairs, which allowed me to work with international students, like my self each semester. I got to know amazing world travelers from around the globe. Both departments focused a lot on providing students with transitional supports, and workshops on cultural differences. It was great to be a part of the programs because I could personally relate to it.

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

This is my 3rd year as a Liaison Officer. The University of Guelph is so passionate about instilling positive change in others lives and that is exactly what I get to do with this job! I love working with students and parents and being in an environment where I know that I am helping another student in some capacity. Most of all, the travel is so much fun and interactive.

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Try out new things! Guelph is designed to help you explore and test your potential. To name a few, make new friends, try a new sport and join a club! Step outside your comfort zone because that’s where life begins!

The school visits have STARTED. Meaning, Tizy could be arriving at your school...tomorrow! Get excited, and don't miss out on her sharing personal experiences about coming from an international country, her campus involvement and the environment at Guelph she knows so well and adores.

See you at OUF!

Posted: Monday, September 21, 2015 - 15:48

If you’re a high school student, the Ontario Universities’ Fair is where you should be this weekend! It is the only event throughout the school year where you can visit all 21 Ontario universities in one place. And, admission is FREE! You can’t pass that up.

Being held at the Metro Toronto Convention center, OUF runs from Friday, September 25 – Sunday, September 27. It will give you an opportunity to speak with representatives from each university to learn about programs you’re interested in, the campus community and free advice for taking this next step in your educational career.

Most importantly, be sure to visit the University of Guelph’s booth! You’ll get up close and personal with university staff and faculty to gather all the information you need about coming to UofG. We also have our Liaison team doing presentations throughout each day that we highly recommend attending. Be sure to check out our Information Booth, where we will be giving away tons of Guelph swag – you’ll even have the chance to win an iPhone 6!

This fair draws more than 120,000 students, their parents and university exhibitors. So, mark it on your calendar and don’t miss out! We can wait to see you there friends!

For more information, visit the Ontario Universities’ Fair website. Here, you will find directions, resources, exhibitors and so forth.

2015 Road Warrior Series: Dan Nasso

Posted: Thursday, September 17, 2015 - 08:38

Dan Nasso just couldn't get enough of Guelph and is back on the road! After taking some time away from the Road Warrior life, Dan came to the conclusion that promoting the University of Guelph to prospective students is what he loves - and how could we argue with that?

As many of you may not have seen him around, here's a tid-bit of information about the guy: Dan

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

My favourite thing about Guelph is the people.  Our school seems to attract amazing students who are caring.

I found it very easy to make friends here, and to this day some of my best friends are who I met on campus.

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

I had an opportunity to be involved with Gryphon Camps, where I was a counsellor and eventually director of camps. It allowed me to develop skills and take on responsibilities that made me grow as a person.  I also got pretty good at dodgeball.

I also was involved in intramural sports and found it to be a great way to stay active and a healthy distraction from school.

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

I want students to experience what life is like at Guelph. From our academics to how to be involved on campus. I think it’s important that students not only succeed in the classroom, but also to have chances to express who they are outside of the classroom.

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Do your research! Ask lots of questions about what University life is like, and make sure you visit campuses to make sure that school is the right fit for you.

Also- have a meal on our campus. We have some really amazing food…I probably ate a bit too much of it.

And there you have it! Major takeaways: Dan likes people, dodgeball...and food. All of which the University of Guelph supplies in high quality.

He's coming your way!

2015 Road Warrior Series: Bailey Thack

Posted: Thursday, September 10, 2015 - 11:27

Also stepping onto the 2015 Road Warrior team is Bailey Thack! Having graduated from the Tourism Management program at the University of Guelph, she couldn't stay away from the Guelph community and is looking forward to speaking with #futuregryphons about her time here. Bailey

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

The community feeling you get the moment you walk on campus.  Not only is it beautiful - taking in the fall sun on Johnston Green was one of my favourite weekend activities, but it's filled with amazing people who will make your time at Guelph memorable.

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

During my first year I was an Inter Hall Council Rep and UoG Ambassador in Johnston Hall. In upper years I played girls intramural hockey and got involved in the HTMSA.

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

After living and working on Toronto, I missed the feeling of community and belonging so evident at Guelph, so I moved back to become a Liaison Officer. I am excited to me traveling around Ontario to share my passion for this community with students looking for the perfect fit for them.

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Get out of your comfort zone - when you arrive at Guelph, you'll be surrounded by new people all excited to try new things! Take advantage of your new surroundings to try a new sport - inner tube water polo anyone? Or try a new club - maybe you'll excel at juggling in the Circus Club - whatever you choose, you're sure to meet new friends and have fun along the way.

She'll be coming to your community soon hoping to persuade you to join her community! UofG is excited to have you representing us, Bailey.

2015 Road Warrior Series: Hilary Holmes

Posted: Wednesday, September 2, 2015 - 23:41

Say HELLO to Hilary Holmes, another new face to the 2015 Liaison Officer squad. Having been a University Tour Guide, she may already be very well known on campus. But now, she gets to take high school students on a more 'virtual' tour of the school, its programs, services and processes, and share her experiences as a Bachelor of Arts, Sociology major & Psychology minor graduate! Hilary

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

The people! U of G has a great community atmosphere and everyone is always happy to lend a helping hand. I also love the size of our campus and community – there are so many people to meet and so many different opportunities to get involved - but at the same time it’s not overwhelming and you will always run in to someone you know. I also love the City of Guelph – it’s a beautiful place to live!

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

Volunteer Note-Taker for the Student Accessibility Services, University of Guelph Ambassador (UoGA), Orientation Volunteer, Central Student Association Food Bank Volunteer, Sociology & Anthropology (SOAN) student society, Student Help and Advocacy Centre Volunteer Coordinator (1 year), Client Services Representative at the W.F. Mitchell Centre (3 years), “full-time” Tour Guide (3 years). I also loved to play intramural sports during my time at Guelph (indoor/outdoor soccer, volleyball, hockey).

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

As a Tour Guide in the Admissions department, I loved talking with prospective students and families and being a small part of their decision to come to the University of Guelph. The Liaison Officer position just seemed like another awesome opportunity to do that! I love to share how much I love U of G and I’m excited to take my stories and experiences to high schools across Ontario!

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Take advantage of every opportunity! U of G is the perfect place to get involved and explore all of your different interests; join clubs and student societies, play intramurals, go on an exchange, get to know your professors, and just have fun! Working hard and studying are definitely important too – but balancing school and the student experience is what will make university the best four years of your life!

Be on the lookout for this warrior in the upcoming months! Let Hilary 'guide' you to the school of your dreams. That was cheesy, but we had to...

2015 Road Warrior Series: Courtney McCarthy

Posted: Friday, August 28, 2015 - 13:35

We are welcoming Courtney McCarthy to the Liaison Officer team in fall 2015. She graduated from the Bachelor of Arts program, with a double major in Political Science and Criminal Justice & Public Policy. Courtney

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

Our students care - a lot. There are always events on campus trying to raise awareness of different issues, whether it is climate change, use of bottled water, or alleviating world hunger. Being a student here taught me how to look outside of myself and encouraged me to dedicate my life to helping other people in whatever way I could. We have an active, or dare I say, activist community and it is inspiring to be around day in and day out.

Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG.

I worked as a peer helper in the Political Science Department, acting as a source of support for younger students as they moved through the program. I was also heavily involved with the Political Science Society and was elected President in my 4th year. We helped organize the first annual Student Research Forum on campus where upper year students could showcase their work on research or thesis projects. We also organized movie nights, trivia events, and information booths where students could find out about voting in the local elections. I loved helping to encourage students to get involved and care about politics. I also sat on the Board of Directors for the College of Social and Applied Human Sciences.

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

I loved my time at Guelph and I wanted to share my story with other students. In high school, I was skeptical about the university experience but I have never looked back since applying to Guelph. My time here really did make me a better person. I made amazing friends, valuable professional connections, and I learned so much about myself. I don't have to sell Guelph - my experience and my story speaks for itself. If I can help change one person's life by encouraging them to come to Guelph, that will make it all worth it! Plus, it gave me an excuse to move back to the city which I was more than happy to do!

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

Explore and get involved. There is so much that this University has to offer - clubs, events, student groups, volunteer opportunities. Take it all in and put yourself out there. Go and introduce yourself to your professors. They will be an incredibly valuable resource and so often students are too afraid to reach out and say hi. The faculty here is so supportive and encouraging - they want to get to know you and do whatever they can to help you in your journey! Make connections and take advantage of everything that is in front of you. That is what will make your time at Guelph unforgettable - the people and what you do outside the classroom. Don't wait - start in your first year!

Listen to and learn from her...It'd be foolish not to! She'll be bringing her wisdom and that smile to your school, soon. See you then!

2015 Road Warrior Series: Kristen Campbell

Posted: Friday, August 21, 2015 - 09:36

Meet Kristen Campbell, a 2011 graduate of the Bachelor of Arts program, majoring in English with a minor in History. Kristen

What is your favourite thing about UofG?

My favourite thing about UofG is the gryphon-pride! Students are caring, supportive and enthusiastic about the Guelph campus and local/global community! Gryphons feel connected during their studies, and remain connected beyond the classroom and after graduation!


Please describe your campus & community involvement while at UofG

I was a Peer Helper with Writing Services at the library, helping first year students develop their own critical eye for essay editing, and developed my own workshop to help history students in first year understand basic research and writing principles. I was an Undergraduate Research Assistant with the History Department, a volunteer with Project Serve, and was an Orientation Volunteer on the best day of the year—MOVE IN DAY!

What prompted you to become a Liaison Officer?

I cannot wait to travel around Ontario sharing the amazing life-long learning, friendship, and experiential opportunities I gained while I was a gryphon with high school students all around Ontario! I cannot wait to share my love for a University that is rooted in inclusion, diversity, sustainability, collaboration, and truly delivers on the message of “changing lives, improving life.”

What advice would you offer to potential UofG students?

My advice would be to EXPLORE! Do not be afraid to try out many new educational and experiential opportunities. Growth begins when you dare to step outside of your comfort zone; ask questions, be critical, and speak your mind. UofG students are leaders and activists, friends and community. Take advantage of all of the supports, clubs, and even exchanges and field trips offered to you, and create your own educational path—a path unique to you!

Can you feel her enthusiasm and passion for the University of Guelph? CAN YOU FEEL IT?

Look for her in Fall 2015 at a high school near YOU!

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