#uOttawa 2017: The best family reunion

Two women share a laugh over something.

From April 29 to May 6, reconnect with classmates and rediscover your favourite campus as uOttawa hosts the popular annual get-together for alumni, their families and friends.

By Linda Scales

The University of Ottawa will soon welcome its alumni, their families and friends to campus. Alumni Week is back, with activities to suit every taste. Kicking off on Saturday, April 29 with the Department of History’s 60th anniversary celebration and concluding a week later with a variety of fun activities (including the Richard L’Abbé Makerspace Open House), #uOttawa2017 promises to be the best kind of family reunion.

Below is a list of scheduled events. For further details, visit the Alumni Week 2017 website. Space is sometimes limited, so register soon to avoid disappointment. If you can’t find something or if your reunion group is not listed, call the Alumni Relations Office at 613-562-5857 or 1-800-465-1888.


Headlining the week’s events is the annual Alex Trebek Distinguished Lecture Series, named for the alumnus, philanthropist and Jeopardy!  host. On Friday, May 5, Trebek will welcome this year’s speaker, Inuit environmental and human rights advocate Sheila Watt-Cloutier, author of The Right to Be Cold. Her topic: "Seeing Human and Climate Trauma as One". Registration is required.

Another topical talk will be given by one of the most influential American commentators on Canada-U.S. relations. Charles Doran of Johns Hopkins University delivers the inaugural Shawn and Khush Singh Distinguished Lecture, “Canada-U.S. Relations: 100 Days into the Trump Administration". Presented by the Faculty of Social Sciences, it takes place on Thursday, May 4.

Other lectures:

Saturday, April 29

An alumni panel discusses “History in the Making, for 60 years!” in honour of the Department of History’s 60th anniversary.

Tuesday, May 2

The Faculty of Education Lecture, “Saved by a Story: The Healing Power of Narrative,” will be delivered by Professor David Paré.

Wednesday, May 3

At a multi-faculty panel discussion, researchers from Engineering, Science, Health Sciences, Medicine and the Telfer School of Management will talk about how their research has led to innovative solutions to today’s health care challenges.

The Faculty of Law (Common Law Section) presents Professor Tracey Lindberg reading from her acclaimed novel Birdie. A question period will follow.

Thursday, May 4

The Alex Trebek Forum for Dialogue welcomes award-winning researcher Graham Collingridge of the University of Toronto to discuss how we store memories and how the ability to learn and remember may be impaired by Alzheimer’s disease. Lunch will be served.

Saturday, May 6

The Faculty of Law (Civil Law Section) hosts a panel discussion (in French) about issues and challenges surrounding physician-assisted death.


The Gee-Gees’ annual Touchdown Dinner for football alumni, current and graduating players and football fans takes place on Saturday, April 29 at the Château Laurier. Alumni being inducted into the Football Hall of Fame are former Ottawa Rough Rider Gord Weber, former Winnipeg Blue Bomber Lucas Shaver and three-time All-Canadian Kevin Kelly. Registration required.

Physical Education’s French program 1973–77 will have a lot to talk about at its 40-year reunion. It starts on Friday, May 5 with a cocktail party. Register early.

A smiling group of mostly women with two men, several wearing red scarves and paper nametags, looking in the same direction.

Plan to attend uOttawa’s 2017 Alumni Week and reconnect with classmates. Photo: Robert Patterson

Other reunions:

Saturday, April 29

Tuesday, May 2

  • High Tea celebrating the classes of 1967 and earlier

Friday, May 5

Saturday, May 6

Two young women share some noodles from the same dish while sitting in front of the Tabaret lawn fence.

The Food Truck Rally offers many delicious food options. Photo: Mélanie Provencher

Fun activities

The Gee-Gees Family Zone will put a bounce in your step! Student-athletes from the Gee-Gees varsity teams and members of the Capital Jumpers rope jumping team promise energetic participants a morning of skills, drills and thrills. The Gee-Gees’ mascot will be there too.

The Food Truck Rally, introduced at last year’s Alumni Week, is back by popular demand. Tasty street food, including veggie and gluten-free options, will be available.

And more:

Thursday, May 4

Students and young alumni can network and meet local employers at the uO2.0 Annual Cocktail Party.

Friday, May 5

The University’s chief archivist, Michel Prévost, will lead guided tours of the campus, in English and French.

Saturday, May 6

Show your creativity at the Richard L’Abbé Makerspace Open House, where everyone will get to use the cool technology, such as 3D printing.

A boy’s hair stands on end, probably due to electricity from the metal ball he is touching.

Family activities are planned for Saturday, May 6. Photo: Robert Patterson

Main photo: 
Start your visit to campus on Friday, May 5 with a visit to the Garnet & Grey Club outdoor brasserie. Photo: Andrea Campbell


Several students listen to a lecture

Alumni Week features many lectures, reunions and other activities. No matter what your age or interests, there's something for you. Photo: Andrea Campbell


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