Bursaries endowment caps off a year of opportunities at Trinity
This is an intense time on any university campus, and Trinity is of course no exception. Exams, end-of-year papers, applications and plans for the summer and the year ahead all seem to converge at the same time. Supporting all of our outstanding students through these high-anxiety periods is of particular concern to me, and you will be hearing more from your College’s administration on student wellness in the coming months.
For some of our students, money worries are a part of that ongoing anxiety. I remember those days myself, and I know that it’s difficult to focus on the academic achievement, student leadership and community involvement that Trinity’s students value so highly when you’re struggling to make ends meet. With that in mind, I’m delighted to share the news of Charles and Marilyn Baillie’s $1 million gift toward student bursaries (read more on page 17).
I have been moved by the Baillies’ commitment to making a real difference and to “doing their part” to ensure that all students have equal access to education— to a Trinity education in particular. Their generous gift will bolster our student support by $40,000 per year, providing both peace of mind and opportunity for a number of our outstanding students.
Trinity students are so committed to contributing to their community, and financial support is a key part of what makes this possible. We are deeply grateful to the Baillies and so many others who support our students. As I’ve learned in my conversations around campus, the difference that financial security makes in the life of a student is remarkable, and should not be underestimated.
We are fortunate to have such involved and committed alumni at Trinity. One of my priorities for my first year has been to create more opportunities this year for students, alumni, staff and faculty to connect, whether through our “fireside chats” in the Provost’s Lodge, our Women in Leadership dinners, our thought-provoking panel discussions hosted by the Hart House Debate Committee, our evenings in the Lodge with the Gryphon Trio, or our ever-popular Conversations with the Chancellor series. It has also been a privilege to teach our outstanding students. I have been challenged, engaged and fired up by the students in my fourth-year Trinity Ethics, Society and Law course, “Ten Cases That Changed the World.” It has been an amazing journey of learning and I confess that I have benefited as least as much as they have from our weekly discussions!
As we move closer to the end of term I am also feeling a bit heavy-hearted about the imminent departure of my wonderful executive assistant, Brenda Duchesne. Brenda has been with the College for more than a decade and has been a steady, ever-competent influence through the terms of three Provosts and one Interim Provost. I personally feel enormously grateful that Brenda ”broke me in” as the new Provost. She is so good at what she does, and she brings a calm, compassionate grace to this office that will be missed by all of us who know and love her. She leaves behind many friends at Trinity, and I count myself lucky to be among them.
At the same time, I know her family in Cape Breton will be welcoming Brenda and her husband with open arms as they return to her childhood home to begin their next adventure together. They’ll arrive in plenty of time for Brenda to continue her annual tradition of volunteering with the Celtic Colours International Festival, which she’s done for many years (and which I plan to visit someday). On behalf of the entire Trinity family, we wish them every happiness.
In the meantime, I look forward to seeing many of you at Spring Reunion. It promises to be a weekend filled with opportunities for conversation, laughter, great food and of course, excellent company.
Mayo Moran, Provost