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Chronicle 17-18 Issue 08

10 The

10 The Chronicle March 6 - 12, 2018 Community A tropical paradise? A warning to travellers who are going to Jamaica Heather Snowdon The Chronicle Walking into your nearest travel agency, you’re probably looking forward to a warm and sunny vacation. But as you make your plans and choose your destination, you realize your dream getaway in Jamaica may fall short. An ongoing crime wave in the country has caused the Canadian government to issue a warning to people considering a trip to Jamaica. “Exercise a high degree of caution in Jamaica due to the high level of violent crime and the state of emergency in St James Parish,” says the warning on the Government of Canada website. Lerrone Galloway, 26, lived and worked in Montego Bay, Jamaica until 2013 when he left to work on a cruise ship. Galloways says it’s a challenging situation for tourists because “you don’t know war is going on because you can’t see it.” A curfew was put in place in Montego Bay and Kingston in January of this year, after a state of emergency was announced by Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness. Due to recent crime, all shops, stores, bars and nightclubs close at midnight. Galloway was born in Trelawney Parish, Jamaica and moved to Montego Bay when he was a teenager to work as a housekeeper in a resort called Iberostar Rose Hall Suites. “Tourists are more safe than Jamaicans,” he says, regarding how tourism is one of the country’s main industries. Tourists are normally not targeted because they provide jobs to Jamaicans through the tourism industry. He says visitors who do experience violence “are usually in the wrong place at the wrong time.” “It’s a turf war,” he adds, regarding gangs, drugs and guns in Jamaica. “It’s all for money.” Galloway left Jamaica in 2013 to work on a Carnival cruise ship as a waiter, until moving to North Carolina in the United States in the summer of last year to work with his brother delivering furniture. Alison VanLoosen, a travel consultant at Bowmanville Travel – a division of the Kemp Travel Group says, “there are no restrictions in where we book…but the clients don’t want to go there,” regarding tourists wanting to go to Montego Bay. VanLoosen believes travellers are deterred because of the curfew in place. Some travellers are even waiting for refunds after going to Jamaica, but not wanting to leave the resort on excursions, even though they had already paid for them. “They’re waiting for refunds,” she says, “and many people are steering clear of Montego Bay.” But Galloway says, “it doesn’t affect tourism…we protect our tourists because they are important to us. Only if you live in the community is it bad for you.” According to Jamaica’s minister of tourism, travellers are safe in Jamaica. However, a state of You don't know a war is going on because you can't see it. emergency was put in place after an elderly couple from Winnipeg, Man. were found dead in their vacation home in St. Thomas, Jamaica on Jan. 9, 2018. No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing. If you do choose to travel to Jamaica, use caution and stay informed, says VanLoosen. You may want to wait until the state of emergency and warning is lifted and tourists can once again feel free to wander Jamaica’s adventurous landscape, without a worry, she adds. 'Juilliard' program for secondary school students All Saints school unveils new art, media program Claudia Latino The Chronicle This fall, Whitby will have its own ‘Juilliard’. All Saints Catholic Secondary School will launch a new arts program for the coming school year. The Regional Arts and Media program offers students from Grades 7 to 12 across Durham Region the chance to incorporate the arts into their secondary school curriculum. The new program will run alongside with the comprehensive program at the school with students specializing in one or two of the six disciplines. Tish Sheppard, 54, is the teaching and learning consultant for the Durham Catholic District School Board (DCDSB) for implementation of the Arts and Media program. She said the school board didn’t want to lose Catholic secondary schools in Whitby because of decreasing enrollment. “We thought, what can we do to help one of the populations flourish a little more?,” said Sheppard. “Our senior admin team did some research and we decided that a regional arts program was something that was necessary.” The program offers visual arts, dance, drama, vocal music, instrumental music, and media arts. Students in Grades 7 and 8 can choose to enroll in any discipline, except for media arts. Grades 9 through 12 students are able to choose from all six. According to Sheppard, students who combine the arts into their education can excel in any career path they choose. Which is why an arts program would be beneficial for the Catholic school system. “The value of creativity is a huge thing for students. We need creativity in our world. People are looking for 21st century skills when they are hiring, so having an arts program will fill that need,” said Sheppard. To apply, students have to go through an interview and audition procedure for the discipline they want. The ideal candidate receives an acceptance letter and will not have to apply again. Fifteen students will be chosen for each category. Students enrolled for the September 2018 school year have already completed their auditions and those selected have received their letter of acceptance. Students don’t have to be experienced in the arts to apply, but Sheppard says it is an asset. Students who are Catholic or non-Catholic across Durham Region can apply. Transportation is finalized and will be offered to students who live outside of Whitby. “We will be providing some form of transportation. It is going to be a central location where students can be picked up,” she said. Grades 7 and 8 students who are accepted will still complete their required elementary curriculum will leave their elementary school and become part of the All Saints community. Including wearing the required uniform. The school’s third floor will soon be dedicated to these students and those in Grade 8. They will still have their school trip and graduation. “I think we are preparing them for a great opportunity in high school to get a great education experience,” said Sheppard. “The arts are going to help them flourish in whatever way they need to in their post-secondary choices whether it’s college or university.” Photograph by Claudia Latino Tish Sheppard (left), is in charge of introducing the new art and media program at All Saints school to students and staff. Johnny Soln (right), is a drama teacher and chair of the program. The value of creativity is a huge thing for students.

Campus March 6 - 12, 2018 The Chronicle 11 How DC's president left the pack behind Aly Beach The Chronicle Smoking is bad for you - and quitting is hard. It’s a well-known fact. Leave the Pack Behind can help smokers quit. Durham College (DC) president Don Lovisa smoked for about 20 years. He sat down with The Chronicle and Leave the Pack Behind (LTPB) representative Kimberly Buckeridge to talk about his smoking experience and how he quit. Lovisa, 60, started smoking sometime in Grade 8, as it was a norm back then to experiment with smoking. “At that time a lot of people smoked and it really wasn’t thought to be bad for you. Your doctor smoked and your dentist smoked and people around you smoked and you smoked, right?” He says he probably felt dizzy from the nicotine and probably questioned why he was doing it in the first place. “The ‘why’ was probably peer pressure - try something different, be part of the group. I think as young people, we do a lot of things based on peer pressure, don’t we?” says Lovisa. He says he probably didn’t start smoking regularly until Grade 10, but remembers how he used to try to hide his early smoking habits from his parents and teachers at Saint Mary’s school in Fort Frances, Ont., near Thunder Bay. “Behind the gymnasium there was a brick that was loose and we would hide our cigarettes behind that brick. So, your parents could never know, your teachers could never know,” says Lovisa. “So many people smoked, they probably didn’t notice it [the smell of cigarettes].” He quit cold-turkey when he was around 34-years-old after a health scare, where he spent three days in hospital in the Intensive Care Unit. “It really changed my perspective,” says Lovisa. Lovisa describes smoking as “part addiction, but also part habit.” During his quitting period, cravings crept up on him, when he ate, drank, and was out with friends. He says it’s “not just the addiction, but Durham College president Don Lovisa tells the story of how he quit smoking. also the changing of your norms.” Despite the difficulty, he was determined to beat it. “But there was always something in the back of your mind that would say ‘well if you don’t do this, you’ll be dead pretty early in your life’, so that’s not something I wanted to be.” According to Lovisa, quitting changed a lot of things in his life for the better, including his health. “When you quit when you’re younger, your body has a chance to heal. The longer you smoke, the less likely your lungs are going to heal. But you’re healthier, you feel better, you sleep better,” says Lovisa. “As time went on our society changed and it became easier to function in society. I didn’t have to go find my place to go have a cigarette.” When telling his story, Lovisa describes things that would be outlandish to some students today. “I’m trying to remember if there was still smoking in bars then - there probably was. Restaurants would be divided in half. Half would be smoking, half would be non-smoking,” says Lovisa. “I remember being on airplanes and behind row seven, you could smoke, but from row seven to one, you couldn’t smoke. The non-smoking section was the first seven rows.” He describes a time where one could smoke in class and in the hallways at school and where cigarettes and menthol cigarettes were prescribed by doctors for certain ailments like sore throats. “People would walk into your office and the first thing you do is ‘do you want a cigarette?’ sit down and have a cigarette, and have your meeting and a cigarette. It was just part of the norm,” says Lovisa. Peter Garrett, director of DC’s Students Inc., was also present to talk about smoking on campus. DC Students Inc. is DC’s new student association that oversees services such as the student health plan and Riot Radio. He mentions how years prior to the Tuck Shop closing, it sold cigarettes. He says this was a major money-maker for the shop and when it stopped selling them, they started showing a loss in profit. Lovisa notes it is not as socially acceptable to smoke now and the science supports the negative side effects of smoking. Due to this, as DC president, he has wondered about the possibility of completely Photograph by Cassidy McMullen banning smoking on at least one DC campus. “One of the things we’re wondering about here is ‘is it possible to go to a non-smoking campus?’. It’s being tested by some other institutions now but, is it possible to maybe start with our Whitby campus, which is a smaller campus, and go non-smoking and through doing that, it’s our way of saying ‘it’s not acceptable, socially acceptable, on campus and we have these tools for you to help you quit smoking if you’re a smoker’,” says Lovisa. While DC could ask the Ontario government to step in and regulate smoking on the premises, Lovisa wonders if it is the best idea. “That’s the debate: do we really want to go to the government and say ‘put a regulation here’ and have the heavy-handed government cause the change or do we want to be socially responsible and try to do something on our own?,” says Lovisa. LTPB is a tobacco control program funded by the Ontario government. It offers free personalized supports to people who are trying to quit smoking. These supports include free nicotine replacement therapy such as nicotine patches and gum, quitting resources, contests and referrals to the Smoker’s Helpline. LTPB targets young adults because statistics show that one in four smokers has their first cigarette after the age of 18 and if they quit before the age of 30, they reduce the increased risk of health problems. “It’s a good program. It’s much like MADD for drunk drivers. Look at the incredible impact this program had on people’s lives in the instance of people not drinking and driving anymore and the consequences have gone up. There are no consequences like that with smoking, except for your health but there are consequences socially now where you can’t smoke anywhere,” says Lovisa. Lovisa describes the program as two parts - health risk awareness and the enforcement of the lack of social acceptance for smoking in today’s society. “So I think the messaging is the right decision and they understand that what they’re doing is harmful to them,” says Lovisa, “and the campaign can get them to do that through understanding and a little bit of pressure. People start to look at what they’re doing and try to find ways to quit.” Quitting is a personal choice, Lovisa says, adding it is difficult, but smokers have to ultimately choose to accept the fact that it is bad for them and then make the decision to do something about it. “You have to find your own motivation and your own tools. It’s a personal choice. As much as we can tell people that it’s bad for you, and ‘you must quit,’ it’s a personal choice,” he says. “But when you’re ready to have that conversation, find the tools, find Leave the Pack Behind, find the support you need. Go to your family and friends and ask them to support you.” To learn more about LTPB, go to the Campus Health Centre or check out their website: http:// “I would never tell somebody, because I did smoke, that ‘you must stop smoking.’ It’s more important just to say to somebody if they ask you, ‘this will help you stop smoking’,” Lovisa says.

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