Calling Brock University graduates: your time has come

The Campaign for a Bold New Brock

Calling Brock University graduates: your time has come

Sept. 10, 2009

On Sept 18-20 Brock will reach out to thousands of grads with a homecoming weekend that embraces its alumni and celebrates some of its most accomplished.

The Alumni Weekend will fete alumni ranging from world-renowned Alzheimer’s researcher Dr. Mary Guerriero Austrom and Olympic wrestler Marty Calder, to winemaking legend Karl Kaiser and the hot online wine duo iYellow Wine Club.

It’s all part of Brock Days, the Homecoming and Community celebration that runs Sept. 12-27.

The Alumni Weekend itinerary includes a barbecue, a Saturday afternoon reunion gathering in the Brock courtyard and the alumni association’s annual Black and White dinner.

Austrom, a social psychologist at Indiana University, is coming home to accept Brock University’s 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award at the Black and White Reunion Dinner on Saturday night.

Since earning her BA and BEd from Brock in 1980 and ’81, Austrom’s research, teaching and writing has put her in demand as a speaker at international conferences. She is also a director of the US National Alzheimer’s Association. Her research includes coping mechanisms for caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients.

As the Wesley P. Martin Professor of Alzheimer Disease Education at the Indiana University School of Medicine's Department of Psychiatry, she holds the first and only endowed professorship for Alzheimer’s disease education in the world.

But right now she is looking forward to seeing her alma mater.

“I just love Brock,” Austrom said from her office in Indianapolis. “The feel of the campus, the interaction it gives to students, it just prepared me so well for my career, and for the greater academic world.”

Austrom grew up in Beamsville, Ont., where her family moved to from Italy when she was 3 years old. She was the first one of her extended family to ever attend university. “That’s exactly why we emigrated. My dad wanted to give us all a better chance.”

Receiving this year’s alumni awards from individual Faculties will be Calder (Faculty of Applied Health Sciences); Kaiser (Mathematics and Science); David Mackenzie (Humanities); Ted Palmer (Education); and John Zoccoli (Business).

Earlier on Saturday, the Brock Alumni Luncheon will hear from 2005 grads Angela Aiello and Paxton Allewell — known to thousands of followers as the iYellow Wine Club (

The entrepreneurs, graduates of Brock’s Business Communications program, went from working in a retail wine shop at Toronto’s Queen’s Quay to creating a multimedia wine website and then a company running wine tours and education, all aimed at younger consumers.

“We knew there was a huge opportunity to bring wine to a younger demographic,” says Allewell. “Our Brock education has given us an edge in terms of marketing and branding iYellow in the real world.”

The 2009 alumni weekend is one of the biggest reunions in Brock history. With more than 20,000 Brock grads in the Niagara area alone, organizers are looking for a good turnout, said University alumni relations manager Terry Cockerline.

“It’s important for people to reconnect with old friends and reconnect with Brock,” said Cockerline. “We want them to always remain a part of their alma mater.”

For more information or for tickets go to


Itinerary for Brock University 2009 Alumni Reunion Weekend

Alumni Association Annual Golf Tournament:
Saturday Sept. 12, Lochness Links Golf Course, 1 p.m.
Spots still available, sign up at

Tribute! to Joe Kenny:
Friday Sept. 18, Lowenberger Residence, 6:30 p.m.
For 28 years, Joe Kenny has treated Brock’s injured students, staff and faculty at the Athletic Therapy Clinic: join us as we celebrate Joe’s contributions. Tickets are $45 each and available by calling the Centre for the Arts Box Office at 905.688.5550 x3257

Alumni Pub Night:
Friday Sept. 18, Isaac’s Pub 9 p.m.-2 a.m.
Share a few Brock stories over a pint at the campus pub. Tickets $5 online, $10 at the door.

Brock University Alumni Association Luncheon & Annual General Meeting:
Saturday Sept. 19, Alphies Trough noon-1 p.m.
Guest speakers Brock alumni Angela Aiello (BA, ’05) and Paxton Allewell (BA, ’05) from iYellow Wine Club.

Reunion Station:
Saturday Sept. 19, Walker Courtyard 1-4 p.m.
The biggest event of the weekend, over 15 faculty, anniversary year, and club reunions will converge. Registration is open at

Black & White Reunion Dinner:
Saturday Sept. 19, Pond Inlet 6-10 p.m.
Marquee event where the Distinguished Alumni Award is presented.

Department of Communications, Pop Culture and Film reunion luncheon:
Sunday Sept. 20 at Hernder Estate winery.
For information and tickets go to: