York is U ends year with a blast of red & white spirit


York is U honorees

Above: Newly elected York is U Executive with Friends of York is U: From left, front row, Saba Rafiq, Soheila Satar, Analise Anderson, Yumi Hotta; Middle row, Donna Robbins, Sylvia Schippke, Naguib Gouda, Lorna R. Marsden, Patrick Legris; Back row, Adeyinka Daramola, Jeremy Greenberg, Ross McMillan, Laura M., Sheelagh Atkinson.

York’s award-winning student spirit organization, York is U, ended the winter term with a burst of activity designed to reduce stress before exams, celebrate York’s 46th birthday and honour its volunteers. With everything from free massages to a visit by the Grey Cup and the election of a new executive, York is U’s events demonstrated why the group has been so successful in encouraging student participation in campus life.

Stress Buster Carnival 

York is U massagesIn the words of one organizer, the Winter Stress Buster Carnival, held March 28, was “awesome”. More than a thousand students kicked back and had some fun before exam time, treating themselves to a free massage, cotton candy, carnival games, stress balls, loot bags, mocktails, and blood pressure checks. 

Left: Masseurs provide stress release at the carnival

This winter stress buster helped to bust the stress out of the students and several were heard saying, “Wow, this is exactly what I needed!” Many students, including some York is U volunteers, had exams on that day and came by to enjoy the stress-free fun afterwards.

York’s 46th Birthday party events 

York’s birthday was celebrated March 24 in colourful style with a host of York is U volunteers and students wearing their school colours for pride and prizes. The celebration featured an all-day stage show and free birthday cake for all. Events were held in the Student Centre Food Court and the East Bear Pit of Central Square. 

Mike O'Shea with Grey Cup


Left: Toronto Argonauts’ Mike O’Shea with the York Lions and the Grey Cup 

The highlight of the event for many people was an unscheduled one: as two of the contestants from the York Idol competition were singing I Believe I Can Fly, their microphones went dead and everyone on the balcony began singing from where the idols had left off. “We had the whole Student Centre balcony crowd singing and waving their arms,” said one York is U volunteer. 

Around the lunch hour, Toronto Argonauts player Mike O’Shea was on hand to sign autographs and pose for pictures with the Grey Cup. The appearance also marked the announcement that the Argos will be calling York home when the new stadium is built. In the evening, the party moved to the Underground for a special Birthday Pub Night that went into the wee hours.

Pinning Ceremony for York is U VolunteersAyessha Saleem, Lorna R. Marsden, Naguib Gouda 

Right: York is U volunteer Ayesha Saleem, (centre), with York President and Vice-Chancellor Lorna R. Marsden (left), and  Naguib Gouda (right), executive director, alumni & advancement services

The York is U Pinning Ceremony, held on April 6, saw close to 70 York is U members honoured for their year of hard work and dedication. Lorna R. Marsden, York president and vice-chancellor, joined Naguib Gouda, executive director, alumni & of advancement services, in officiating at the convocation-like ceremony in which each York is U member received a membership pin, volunteer recognition certificate and any rewards they had earned through volunteer hours amassed in the student spirit group in 2004-2005.

The volunteer of the year award was presented to Ayesha Saleem who set a new York is U record, putting in more than 400 volunteer hours this year.