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Vol 38  No 6
November 24, 2005




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Bright lights shine at affinity event

By Wade Kearley

Among the 350 guests for the 2005 Ottawa Affinity Newfoundland and Labrador were: (L-R): Gen. Rick Hiller, Canada’s Chief of Defence Staff (who will speak at the event next year); Dr. Axel Meisen, Memorial’s president; Premier Danny Williams; and David Reddaway, British High Commissioner.


“Memorial University helps to shape the minds that have built our province. Memorial has produced an exceptional crop of graduates and Memorial’s alumni serve as ambassadors for the best place on earth. They serve as a beacon for Canada’s youngest and coolest province.”

That was part of Premier Danny Williams’s address to over 350 guests, alumni and friends of Memorial at the fifth annual Ottawa Affinity Newfoundland and Labrador event, Monday, Nov. 7, at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. He was the featured speaker at the event that attracts Ottawa’s key business, technology, industry and government representatives, most with Newfoundland and Labrador connections. Funds raised are in support of a scholarship at Memorial University.

Memorial’s president, Dr. Axel Meisen, gave the Ottawa audience an informative update on the many innovative developments at the university.

“We have built in Newfoundland and Labrador a university that is among the top universities in Canada and in the top 500 universities in the world, and that is out of some 16,000 institutions,” said Dr. Meisen. “At Memorial, we remain deeply committed to the development all of Newfoundland and Labrador.”

Contacted by phone the morning after the event, Memorial MBA graduate Tom Bursey was enthusiastic about the successful evening. “This is the culmination of five good years of building an event,” explained Mr. Bursey. “It’s a great way for alumni to connect, reconnect and enhance relationships with other alumni and for anyone who is either from the province or who has an interest there.”

Mr. Bursey is particularly pleased that the affinity event model is also working at locations outside the province, not just Ottawa. Successful affinity events based on the Ottawa model have been held in Calgary and Toronto ­ both of which raised tens of thousands of dollars in support of scholarships at Memorial. Mr. Bursey encourages alumni and those who want to contribute to the university and the province, to get involved in creating an annual affinity event where they live.

“What a great way to grow and promote MUN and to keep our image positive in terms of what we do for Canada. It will keep MUN and the province at the top of people’s minds, getting good news out about Newfoundland and Labrador’s past, present and future,” said Mr. Bursey.


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