Fellowships give young lawyers taste of public service

The Law Foundation of Ontario will fund up to six articling fellowships for public-interest organizations each year for the next four years, reported the National Post May 11. The initiative is not only seen as bolstering the public sector ranks, but also satisfying a need expressed by law students who want to work in these fields. “I think that the practice of law can be quite daunting and difficult,” said Manuel Mendelzon, a third-year student at York’s Osgoode Hall Law School. “When the goal of what you do is to help the community it makes it much easier to put in the blood, sweat and tears.” Sarah Dover, another Osgoode student who just completed her final year and wants to practise environmental law, said public-sector work can have meaning. “To be involved in cases where you’re literally saving a municipality’s water supply, for example, or seeking reparations for a toxic contaminant site that has caused phenomenal health problems for families, or saving a piece of land that has the last of some known species for it, there’s no competition. [That’s] the draw for me.”

York student among 20 feted for their leadership

Chelsea Takalo has spent most of her life committed to good causes and making her community a better place to live, reported the Toronto Star May 11 in a front-page story. The 19-year-old York social work student is one of Youth in Motion’s Top 20 Under 20 for 2005 – an award and mentoring program that celebrates outstanding young Canadians for their leadership, innovation and achievements. At 12, she was vice-president of the junior board of directors at the Lakeshore co-op in south Etobicoke where she lives with her mother. By 14, Takalo had co-founded the trailblazing South Etobicoke Youth Assembly (SEYA) and was front and centre advocating for young people at city hall.

Stadium would give Lynx a chance to grow

The Toronto Lynx, the city’s professional men’s soccer team, has spent eight seasons struggling on the margins of Canada’s largest market and continues to exist only on the outskirts, reported the National Post May 11. There is hope a new stadium proposal at York University would give the Lynx a new place to play and, for the first time in memory, a real chance to grow the fan base, said the Post.

Dance company celebrates 30 years of change

If ever Dancemakers were to change its name, the Toronto-based company might well consider calling itself Chameleon, suggested Toronto Star reviewer William Littler May 11. For three decades since its founding in and around York University in 1974, this has been an enterprise in constant change, always trying out new work and seeking new creative directions for its dancers to take. So what could have been more appropriate to bring its 30th anniversary season to a close than the program that opened Tuesday on the stage of Harbourfront Centre’s Premiere Dance Theatre? Titled Metamorphoses, the program brought together four new works inspired by Ovid’s Greek tales of mythical transformation.

Being bilingual is like brain gym

In an opinion piece on healthy aging, the Truro, Nova Scotia Daily News said York University has found that bilinguals showed a slower rate of decline for some processes with aging. “Being bilingual is like going to a brain gym,” said psychology Prof. Ellen Bialystok of York’s Faculty of Arts. Speaking a second language causes physical changes in the brain and pumps up more blood to carry more oxygen.

Theatre architect designed York’s student centre

Richmond Hill’s theatre came a little closer to raising the curtain as council chose Toronto-based Diamond and Schmitt Architect Inc. to design the downtown building, reported the Richmond Hill Liberal May 10. Diamond and Schmitt’s non-arts projects include the York University Student Centre.

On air

  • Patrick Monahan, constitutional expert and dean of York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, discussed the vote that passed in the House of Commons calling on the Liberals to resign and what it will mean for the Liberals and the federal government, on CBC Radio’s “As It Happens” May 10. He was also cited on “CTV News and Current Affairs” the same day as saying the vote is a procedural matter and not a confidence matter.
  • CBC TV’s “Canada Now” aired a profile May 10 of Chen Kupperman, a 14-year-old math student and tutor at York University.