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Distinguished guest speakers at Loyalist Convocation

Loyalist College held its 2010 Convocation ceremonies June 10 and 11. Guest speakers for the ceremonies included David C. Onley, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario; Scientist and researcher, Matthew Bamsey; and Loyalist graduate and CBC Radio News Host, Martina Fitzgerald.
Thursday’s 10 a.m. ceremony honoured graduates in the Schools of Health Sciences and Human Studies. Guest speaker Onley was appointed Ontario’s 28th Lieutenant Governor following a distinguished career as a broadcaster.  He has championed disability issues for many years and served as Chair of the Government of Ontario’s Accessibility Standards Advisory Council and was an accessibility council member for the Rogers Centre and the Air Canada Centre.  As the first Lieutenant Governor with a physical disability, he has adopted ‘accessibility’ as the overarching theme of his mandate.  He has defined accessibility as that which enables people to achieve their full potential.  True accessibility means that disabled people can fully participate in the social, cultural and economic life of Ontario.
On Thursday afternoon at 2:30 p.m., graduating students in the Schools of Biosciences, Business and Management Studies and the Centre for Justice Studies will hear an address by Matthew Bamsey.  He holds a B.Eng. in aerospace engineering from Carleton University in Ottawa and an M.Sc. in aerospace engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder, concentrating primarily on life support and space suit design. Since 2006, Matthew has been pursuing a Ph.D. in environmental biology with the University of Guelph, focusing on advanced life support for human spaceflight under a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada scholarship while stationed at the Canadian Space Agency and the Controlled Environment Systems Research Facility. Matthew has been working as a student researcher at the Canadian Space Agency since 2001, where he has worked with the RADARSAT-2 program and with the Space Science department on the Arthur Clarke Mars Greenhouse project on Devon Island in the Canadian High Arctic.  In 2007, Matthew was selected from a worldwide call of applicants and participated in a four-month scientific expedition to the Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station in the Canadian High Arctic.  In 2009, Matthew was fortunate to be a finalist in the Canadian National Astronaut Recruitment Campaign, from more than 5,300 applicants.
The third Convocation ceremony was held at 10 a.m. on Friday, June 11, recognizing graduating students in the Schools of Media Studies, Architecture and Building Sciences, and Continuing Education and Skills Training.   Martina Fitzgerald, a 1984 Loyalist graduate from the Radio Broadcasting program, has worked at radio stations in Belleville, Kingston and Toronto.  In 2002, she joined CBC Radio in Toronto, starting with National Radio Sports, and then moving to Regional and National News.  She has hosted “Ontario Morning” and “Here and Now” (the Toronto afternoon show).  Today, she is the National Radio News Host/Editor and hosts the CBC flagship program, “World Report” on weekends, and other national news shows such as “The World at Six” and “The World This Weekend”, from time to time.  In 2001-02, Martina co-hosted the Easter Seal Telethon for CBC Television in Toronto, and previously she was a Telethon host for CKWS Television in Kingston.  Her community involvement includes support for the Limestone Learning Foundation and the Toronto Children’s Breakfast Club.  A strong believer in mentoring, she has taught broadcast journalism and radio broadcasting at Seneca and Loyalist Colleges.  She is a former chair and current member of the Loyalist College Radio Broadcasting Advisory Committee.

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