Thursday, February 26, 2009

University honours outstanding researchers

Professors Siyaram Pandey, Rob Schurko and Otis Vacratsis (pictured L-R) were honoured by the University of Windsor on Feb. 12, 2009 for their outstanding research contributions. Drs. Pandey and Vacratsis have recently obtained funding for major health-related research grants, and Dr. Schurko was awarded a University of Windsor Award for Excellence in Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity (mid-career). Click here for a full listing of honours, and visit their web pages by clicking their names above.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Brianna Binder honoured by Ontario Athletic Union

Congratulations to Brianna Binder, who is currently enrolled in Honours Chemistry, for being recognized at the Sixth Annual Women of Influence Luncheon for top female student/athletes in the OUA. Brianna has been a member of the Lancers volley team for the past four years and is recognized as one of Ontario's top players. She has also maintained a full course load and high grades, and has received numerous honours and awards for her efforts. Check out the Windsor Star story listed below.

Binder leads by example - Lancer honoured by OUA
from the Windsor Star - February 11, 2009

Brianna Binder took one more trip as a University of Windsor student/athlete Tuesday and the ride up the 401 to Toronto took her through four years of memories.

The 21-year-old Maidstone resident was Windsor’s representative at the sixth annual Women of Influence Luncheon, which recognizes the top female student/athletes in the OUA.

"It’s an honour to be recognized for what you’ve accomplished," said Binder, who has starred for the Lancers women’s volleyball team the past four years including leading them to an OUA title in 2005-06.
"You realize your efforts and all your hard work have been noticed. You’re a role model for the younger kids coming into the program." While many athletes shun the idea of being a role model, Binder embraces it, making her a perfect selection for the luncheon.

That wasn’t always the case. Binder said it’s been her personal growth in that area that has enriched her university experience.

"I do actually (think of myself as a role model)," said Binder, who will graduate with an honours degree in chemistry with a thesis.

"Not so much in my early years in high school because I was more focused on my own life and where I wanted to go. I stressed about that.

"Now, that I’m in university and accomplished some of the things I wanted, I do relish that role."
"I like it because I look at it as helping the kids coming behind me along their journey."
Ironically, it’s a journey that nearly didn’t get started at Windsor after Binder had been a multi-sport star at Essex High School.

Unlike her father Dave and brothers Karl, Nathan and Dave, who all starred in university sports, Binder was planning to sacrifice her passion for athletics to make sure she’d excel in the classroom.

"I wasn’t going to play volleyball because I was so focused on making the transition from high school to university," said Binder, who won the DeMarco Award last year as Windsor’s top student/athlete.

That’s when Lancers women’s volleyball coach Marilyn Douglas, who Binder lists as the most influential person in her life outside of her own family, invited her for a chat.

"I was skeptical," said Binder, who finished fifth in the OUA this season in points per game.

"She really encouraged me to try out. She always believed I could do more than I believed myself."

"I would’ve missed a lot if I hadn’t played volleyball."

Her fears of losing the balance in her life proved unfounded.

She admits she’s earned a Ph.D. in subject of life lessons balancing all the demands of the past four years.

"That’s why this honour means a little more to me because it’s not just about sports," Binder said.

"There’s more to sports than just playing games."

"It’s about your attitude and how you’ve developed as a person."

"If you can succeed and create that balance in your life while getting the benefit of playing sports and doing well academically in university, then you can succeed in creating that balance in all aspects of your life."