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  • Conestoga College dedicates Agora to the Schlegel family


    On November 9th, Conestoga Colleges School of Life and Health Sciences and Community Services

    hosted an event to make two very exciting announcements. First, that the Schlegel Agora

    of the Cowan Health Sciences Centre, as the name suggests, is being dedicated to the Schlegel family,

    and secondly, that Schlegel Chair Dr. Veronique Boscarts position at Conestoga College is being enhanced with funding through the Canadian

    Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

    WINTER 2013Pg 2. Agri-food for Healthy Aging (A-HA): Save the Date - Innovative agri-food & nutrition strategies Pg 3 & 4. Research Highlights | Pg 5. Event Highlights | Pg 6. Profile: Drs. Cheri McGowan and Bernie Warren

    The word agora means gathering place, and is meant to be a central location for communities to connect and share experiences. This concept is exemplified in every Schlegel Villages retirement and long-term care home through Main Street. Lined with benches, Main Street in Schlegel Villages includes many amenities including a library, community centre, games room and a caf, where residents, families and team members can interact. Similarly, the Schlegel Agora at Conestgoa will act as a gathering place for students and faculty, while commemorating the Schlegel familys commitment to building strong communities and encouraging collaborative activities. The entire Schlegel family (Ron, Barb, Rob, James, and Brad) were in attendance for the unveiling. Following the dedication to the Schlegels, the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), announced the Harper governments $800,000 investment over 5 years in Conestogas applied research program to help develop new care services to meet the needs of Canadas aging population. This award, from the College and Community Innovation (CCI) Program, will further support Dr. Veronique Boscarts position. She began as the Schlegel Chair in Enhanced Seniors Care at Conestoga in early 2012,

    a partnership between RIA and the college. With the addition of this funding, she becomes the chairholder of the CIHR/Schlegel Industrial Research Chair for Colleges in Seniors Care. Dr. Boscart will work with the School of Health and Life Sciences and Community Services, in partnership with RIA and Schlegel Villages, to help advance research in post-secondary education and training, and care practices for seniors living in retirement and long-term care homes. The objective of the CCI Program is to increase innovation at the

    community and regional level by enabling Canadian colleges to work more closely with local companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises. The CCI Program is managed by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) in collaboration with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and CIHR.

    For more information about either of these announcements, please contact us at

    Conestoga College dedicates Schlegel Agora to the Schlegel family for their continued efforts to build strong communities.Photo (left to right): James Schlegel, Hon. Gary Goodyear, Minister of

    State for Science and Technology, Ron Schlegel, Barb Schlegel, Brad Schlegel, Rob Schlegel, Harold Albrecht, MP Kitchener-Conestoga.

  • A-HA @ Premiers Summit

    On October 4, 2012, A-HA participated in the 8th Annual Premiers Summit on Agri-Food as an invited exhibitor. The theme this year was Providing Healthy Foods to Support Healthy Eating.

    Premier Dalton McGuinty presented the Premiers Award for Agri-Food Innovation to P R Short and Son for their creation of a basket that keeps tender fruit fresh, decreases damage during transport, and also appeals to consumers. Ted McMeekin, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, presented the Ministers Award to Burning Kiln Winery for transforming tobacco kilns into wine-making machines. To learn about other Leaders in Innovation awards, please visit the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) website:

    Premier McGuinty and Minister McMeekin also announced that Ontario would move forward with introducing a Local Foods Act which, if passed, will help to support Ontario farmers.

    The day also included panel discussions on Healthy Foods: The Need, the Opportunity and Addressing Consumer Health Needs. There was great discussion about the definition of natural and its perceived health benefits, and the importance of collaborating, including working with research institutions to continue innovating in the food for health sector.

    Overall, it was a terrific day and A-HA was pleased to be a part of it. To learn more about the event, read the recap on OMAFRAs website:

    AGRI-FOOD FOR HEALTHY AGINGThe Agri-food for Healthy Aging (A-HA) initiative is a collaborative research group created through the efforts of the

    RIA, University of Waterloo, University of Guelph, and MaRS Landing. By exploring linkages between agriculture, food, nutrition and human health, A-HA aims to realize innovative opportunities for Ontarios agri-food and health sectors to

    improve the health and well-being of older adults.


    SAVE THE DATE!Innovative agri-food & nutrition strategies

    Ken Stark, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Waterloo, was awarded a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair position in Nutritional Lipidomics.

    This distinction is awarded to leading scientists whose innovative research has the potential to improve human health. Ken develops novel ways of assessing lipid nutrition and investigates how our genes and behavior can affect lipid metabolism in order to understand how these mechanisms relate to disease risk. He is also an expert on omega-3 fatty acids and their connection to optimal health. In 2009, Ken investigated strategies to increase the amount of omega-3 fatty acids in foods served in retirement and long-term care, and he is currently collaborating with fellow A-HA scientists to advance research on nutrient enhancement for healthy aging.

    A-HA Research Scientist Ken Stark named Canada Research Chair

    Thursday April 4, 2013Village of Humber Heights

    Etobicoke, ON

    Wednesday April 10, 2013Village of Winston Park

    Kitchener, ON&

    RIAs Agri-food for Healthy Aging (A-HA) program is hosting two events to share results of A-HA research projects. The agenda will be repeated at both of the locations noted above, and presentations by A-HA researchers will include:

    Making the Most of Mealtimes; creating flexibility in dining > Heather Keller, PhD, RD, FDC, Schlegel Research Chair in Nutrition & Aging, University of Waterloo Sensory properties of pureed foods: Whats important to consumers? > Lisa Duizer, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Guelph Functional foods for healthy aging: A toolkit for health professionals > Alison Duncan, PhD, RD, Professor, University of Guelph The how, what, why and where about omega-3 fatty acids > Ken Stark, PhD, Canada Research Chair in Nutritional Lipidomics, Associate Professor, University of Waterloo

    Stay tuned, registration details will be coming soon!

    Funding provided by Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Institute for Nutrition, Metabolism and Diabetes.

  • RESE




    HTS Living Classrooms Currently, there is a lack of content on seniors care in training programs

    and minimal clinical experience in the long-term care (LTC) setting. In partnership with RIA, Conestoga College and Schlegel Villages have created a collaborative training model to improve gerontological knowledge and skills for future health professionals called Living Classrooms. These training programs offer an innovative strategy to improve workforce development by integrating theoretical and clinical learning, providing students with first-hand experience working with residents in retirement and LTC homes. The program is currently offered for personal support workers (PSW) and practical nurses (PN) at the Village of Riverside Glen in Guelph, and Recreation Management courses and bridging courses for PSWs working towards their PN are offered at the

    Qigong understanding the benefits for long term care residents

    Older adults living in long-term care (LTC) homes often have multiple medical conditions (e.g., arthritis, high blood pressure). It is well established that exercise can contribute to a wealth of health benefits and often provides a non-pharmacologic approach to effectively manage seniors chronic conditions (e.g., reducing blood pressure, improving strength and balance), potentially limiting the number of medications required. University of Windsor researchers, Dr. Cheri McGowan (Assistant Professor, Department of Kinesiology), and her colleague Dr. Bernie Warren (Professor, School of Dramatic Art), are looking at a new exercise regime to add to LTC recreation programs Qigong (pronounced Chee-gong) (learn more about Drs. McGowan and Warren on page 6).

    Qigong, an ancient Chinese method of fitness and health promotion, focuses on the cultivation of internal energy through physical exercises. Although Qigong is practiced in many forms, a gentle and easily practiced form is that of Seated Qigong, which involves performing a series of

    exercises while focusing on breathing, posture and coordination. Additionally, calming music plays throughout the exercise session, which may offer additional benefit. This form of Qigong may be most beneficial for the LTC environment as it