Anselmi named president and CEO of Ottawa Senators

With an impressive track record of leadership in professional sports management, Tom Anselmi (BE’85) has been introduced as the new president and CEO of the Ottawa Senators.

Anselmi is currently a board member on the Huskie Athletics Board of Trustees. He recently served as president and chief operating officer of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE).

Tom Anselmi (BE'85) at December's announcement of Ron and Jane Graham's donation to make Merlis Belsher Place a multi-sport facility.

Tom Anselmi (BE’85) at December’s announcement of Ron and Jane Graham’s donation to make Merlis Belsher Place a multi-sport facility (Photo: Dave Stobbe).

As a community leader, Tom is a member of Canada’s Walk of Fame. He led the development of MLSE’s Team Up Foundation, was previously a vice-chair of the Toronto Board of Trade and a board member of KidSport Canada, Molson Indy Foundation, Basketball Canada, Covenant House and a variety of other community initiatives.

In 2011, Tom received the CDS commendation from Canada’s chief of the defence staff, which is the highest military honour a civilian can receive. In 2012, he was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Read more on Anselmi’s role with the Senators.

U of S announces new provost and VP academic

Tony Vannelli is set to join the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) as its next provost and vice-president academic on August 1, 2017 for a five-year term.

In this role, Vannelli will be the senior academic, planning and budget officer at the U of S, and will be responsible for developing an academic agenda that is connected to the financial decisions of the university and best supports the student experience in all colleges and schools. Vannelli most recently completed a second five-year term as dean of the College of Physical and Engineering Science at the University of Guelph.


“It’s a privilege to step into this role. The U of S has always aspired to provide support to the development of individuals and the impact they can have in communities in the province, country and world,” said Vannelli, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in applied mathematics from Concordia University, and a PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Waterloo. “I am really enthusiastic to start working with faculty, staff and students as well as senior leaders to continue this effort.”

Read more

Gift from alumni helps student-athletes up their game

Giving back regularly to support the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) and the Saskatoon community, Jack (MSc’69) and Sylvia Vicq (BEd’60) are guided by three philanthropic pillars—education, youth and recreation. That’s why their gift of $100,000 in publicly traded shares to the Home Ice Campaign is so fitting for the couple.

Jack and Sylvia Vicq’s donation to support a new ice facility at the U of S stems from their appreciation for the community they’ve raised their family in and their belief in the importance of athletics in students’ lives. 

Jack and Sylvia Vicq’s donation to support a new ice facility at the U of S stems from their appreciation for the community they’ve raised their family in and their belief in the importance of athletics in students’ lives.

Jack and Sylvia know a lot about what it takes for students to be successful—Jack, a professor emeritus, taught taxation and accounting at the U of S for 33 years, and Sylvia taught at the elementary, high school and adult levels. They’ve seen how much dedication and commitment it requires to balance school and sports—and how rewarding it can be for student athletes.

Their generous donation will help make Merlis Belsher Place a reality —the new twin-pad ice facility that will give Huskie athletes, campus recreation participants and our community’s minor league hockey players more opportunities to fulfill their potential.

Read more on the Home Ice Campaign.

Law grad named to Forbes 30 under 30 list

Andrew Arruda (JD’14) has made the prestigious Forbes 30 under 30 law & policy list.

A co-founder of ROSS Intelligence, Arruda has built a legal research engine that uses artificial intelligence to provide everything from citations to full legal briefs. “Research itself takes up 20 per cent of a lawyer’s time, so we’re able to cut down that time from hours to minutes, if not seconds,” said Arruda. “A lot of times your everyday person is unable to really afford a lawyer so our goal really with our tool is to democratize the law.”


Arruda credits his education at the U of S for shaping his career. “The institution really allowed us to think outside the box and gave us the confidence that we could do anything.”

Read more on Arruda’s special recognition.

Engaged Young Alumni Award: a prescription for success

Devoting his academic and professional career to improving people’s health and livelihood, Jaris Swidrovich (BSP’10) was the recipient of the USSU Engaged Young Alumni Award last year. The honour was not only an affirmation for the work he has done, but also inspiration for what he wanted to accomplish next.

“I wanted to ensure I give back to the U of S community to inspire others in the way I was inspired by the university,” said Swidrovich. “Receiving a nomination for the USSU Engaged Young Alumni Award was deeply humbling. To be nominated and considered worthy of the award is an honour in itself.”

The USSU Engaged Young Alumni Award is given to a young alumnus or alumna (younger than 35 years of age and within five years since his/her graduation) who has maintained a strong connection to the U of S since graduation, is actively engaged in his or her community, and has shown characteristics that indicate future success.

Swidrovich is currently a lecturer in the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition. After earning his degree at the U of S, he completed his Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) program at the University of Toronto, where he became the first self-identified First Nations Doctor of Pharmacy in Canada.

In addition to attaining his Doctor of Pharmacy designation, Swidrovich has been active in helping those living with HIV/AIDS and addictions in his role as a clinical coordinator of pharmacy services. He is also on the board of directors for Sanctum–a transitional care home and hospice in Saskatoon for people living with HIV.

Additionally, Swidrovich has also served as a First Nations advisor for the Lung Association of Saskatchewan and the Ministry of Education.

David Stobbe /

Jaris Swidrovich (BSP’10) was last year’s recipient of the USSU Engaged Young Alumni Award. (Photo: Dave Stobbe).

Staying connected to the U of S after graduation was natural to Swidrovich. “My years as an undergraduate student were among the most important years of my life,” he said.

Since receiving the USSU Engaged Young Alumni Award, Swidrovich has connected with students in rural, remote, and northern communities, and worked with educators on and off reserves. His roots with the U of S strengthened even more this year as he was a guest speaker at the 100th Annual General Meeting of the U of S Alumni Association in June 2016.

“Being recognized by the university where I completed by first degree, and where I now currently teach, means the world to me,” said Swidrovich. “I am proud of the University of Saskatchewan and proud to be among the incredible students, staff, and faculty of the university.”

While Swidrovich remains grateful for the award, he also recognizes the importance for fellow alumni to nominate a deserving candidate this year. “Nominating someone for the Engaged Young Alumni Award ensures the legacy of the University of Saskatchewan continues to establish roots that are grounded in communities where our alumni live, work, and play.”

Do you know a recent graduate who is deserving of recognition for this year’s award? Nominate them for the USSU Young Alumni Excellence Award by February 10, 2017. Visit the Awards page to learn more.

Alumni Highlights: Sarah Gauthier

For January’s Alumni Highlights feature, we catch up with Sarah Gauthier (BE’03, MEng’14) a College of Engineering grad. Sarah is the manager of project engineering at Delco Automation Inc. and co-founder of Missinippi Water Solutions Inc.

Sarah’s team of engineers design water treatment systems focusing on technologies such as reverse osmosis, nanofiltration, ultrafiltration, microfiltration, membrane de-gasification, and media filtration. Sarah was appointed to the FHQ Developments’ Board of Directors in September 2014. She has also serves as a board member of the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC) and SaskPower.

Tell us about the campus when you went to the U of S; how is it different today?

Technology has changed a lot since I started.  It definitely would have been rare to see a student with a cell phone or laptop, and I don’t believe any of my course content would have been available online.  I also remember dialing in via landline to register for classes as quickly as possible.  A lot of campus infrastructure has definitely changed; upper and lower Place Riel, Marquis Hall, the new Kinesiology building, Louis’, the Health Sciences building, Stadium Parkade and the addition of Tim Horton’s cafes!

What’s one of your favourite memories you had outside of the classroom?

I’m not sure I could choose just one!  My favourites all involve spending time with friends and developing some life-long friendships.

Overall, how was your U of S experience?

I enjoyed my student experience! I learned how to manage my time more efficiently, but also to relax and take myself less seriously.  I felt very encouraged by my professors, so that helped with feeling competent as a young professional entering the work force.

How did going to the U of S shape your career?

Over the course of my studies, I evolved from being a student who was fairly intimidated by the university to a student who was more confident taking on challenges in new environments.  I learned a lot of life lessons. For me, one of the biggest is that the road to success really begins with showing up.

What did you wish you would have known on your first day at the U of S?

In retrospect, I wish I had embraced and appreciated the moment more, rather than thinking that the experience was something to “get through” in order to start my life.  I cherish those years now as a time that fostered independence and allowed me to begin to create the life I wanted.

Check in for monthly Q&As with alumni from all the U of S colleges, as talk about their life after the U of S and how being on this campus shaped their careers. In case you missed any previous features, you can read them here.