GUELPH, Ontario - September 24, 2013 - University of Guelph Campus Bulletin - If Old Jeremiah could still speak, the cannon would have sounded a $590,000 fundraising goal for the University of Guelph’s annual United Way campaign.
Instead, University of Guelph's Alastair Summerlee announced the goal today at a noon-hour barbecue that doubled as the official reopening of Branion Plaza, a campus gathering place where the popular cannon has served as an unofficial billboard for the last 40 years.
Summerlee said the University’s United Way appeal has grown since he became president in 2003. The goal that fall was $285,000. In the last decade, the University community has donated more than $4.5 million to the United Way.
“I am sure that one of the reasons people contribute to the United Way is because almost all of us have family or know people who have used the services of one of the many agencies in our community,” said Summerlee. “The United Way supports services that make such a difference in our community and our lives.”
Ken Dardano, executive director of the United Way Guelph Wellington Dufferin, was on hand for the launch party and ribbon-cutting, along with numerous University volunteers and the campus committee’s 2013 co-chairs: Prof. Stuart McCook, associate dean of research and graduate studies for the College of Arts; Kim Best, department and undergraduate secretary in the Department of Biomedical Sciences; and undergraduate students Remy Marlett, marketing management, and Jolène Labbé, arts and science.
The United Way barbecue was the first event to take place in the newly renovated Branion Plaza, which now boasts a staging venue, more seating and the University’s signature red brick walkways. The cannon sat mute but displayed its support with a United Way logo painted on its barrel by student supporters who braved the cold last night to continue the tradition.
More information about U of G’s United Way campaign is available online.