Sexual Violence at Concordia: An Ongoing Fight for Justice

Concordia in Dire Need of Sexual Violence Policy Reform, Students Say

Listen to the Concordian’s news editors Marieke Glorieux-Stryckman and the Link’s news editor Zachary Fortier speak on the details behind this story.

CORRECTION: This article was edited to remove an erroneous quote and to add specifications. Details regarding the corrections are found below.

At the start of the Winter 2022 semester, Concordia student Katherine Leblanc’s theology class was moved online due to COVID-19 precautions. After texting her class group chat about the challenges of the course, Leblanc began receiving hateful messages from multiple male classmates. Their insults took a rapid turn. 

In February 2022, Leblanc received a series of pornographic images and threats of bodily harm, including rape. 

She followed Concordia’s sexual violence policy, which also applies to online harassment. As she attempted to seek justice for the harassment she endured, she said the university made it as difficult as possible for her needs to be met.

After filing a complaint to the Office of Rights and Responsibilities (ORR), Leblanc claimed she was left in the dark for weeks and routinely ignored by Concordia. After hiring a lawyer to get the university to respond, she claimed she finally received a reply with a hearing date the following day. “I shouldn’t have to get a lawyer to move my case to the tribunal,” Leblanc said.

“I’d been cooperating for weeks and they would not send my case to the tribunal. They just wouldn’t answer. Instead of telling me the process, they moved me from person to person,” she continued.

“I was cooperating with Concordia but they would not listen.”

From the ORR to the Sexual Assault Resource Centre (SARC), Leblanc never felt heard or properly taken care of by the institutional bodies meant to handle sexual violence on campus.

The history of sexual violence on Quebec campuses goes back decades. Years of advocacy from university and CEGEP students led to Quebec passing Bill 151 in 2017, an Act to prevent and fight sexual violence in higher education institutions. 

In compliance with the new law, Concordia created the Standing Committee on Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Violence (SMSV) in 2018. Despite the mandatory inclusion of four student representatives on the committee, student members of the SMSV say they have routinely felt ignored and outnumbered by the administration.

In October 2022, the Concordia Student Union (CSU), the Graduate Students’ Association (GSA), and the Teaching and Research Assistants at Concordia (TRAC) union began a boycott of the SMSV. They demanded student-led solutions, transparency, and gender equity. 

In response to the boycott, Concordia appointed four students to the SMSV, potentially violating the Accreditation Act by not having representatives from student unions. The identities of these students have not been revealed.

Limited Resources, Limited Impact

After Leblanc was sexually harassed, she consulted SARC for assistance. She was given information about mental health and other services available to her, but didn’t find much use from them.

Faced with physically returning to her classroom once in-person learning resumed, Leblanc was frustrated with Concordia’s Sexual Assault Response Team, made to help survivors navigate campus. “Just trying to get security to accompany me to class was a nightmare,” she said.

SARC was created in 2013 largely due to student-led efforts from the Centre for Gender Advocacy and in collaboration with Health Services, the Dean of Students Office and other units on campus. It is the primary point of contact for members of the university experiencing any form of sexual violence.

For Jennifer Drummond, SARC’s manager, the centre has two missions: support and prevention. “The centre provides counseling, academic and health accommodations, and other resources,” she said.

Currently, SARC employs two counselors, a facilitator, and a project coordinator, according to Drummond. Volunteers fill the other posts.

One of SARC’s responsibilities is the handling of sexual assault disclosures. 

In Concordia’s annual reports, which are required by Bill 151, the university categorizes instances of sexual assault reported by students between disclosures and complaints.

The report defines disclosures as signaling a situation without going as far as filing an administrative complaint. Disclosures are resolved with accommodation measures for the survivor. 

In Concordia’s 2021-2022 report, 111 disclosures were filed.

Many students have criticized the way SARC operates. In a 2018 report, 70 per cent of people who reported sexual assault at Concordia were dissatisfied with the outcome of their cases. 

Olivia, a member of the CSU’s campaigns department who has been given a pseudonym to protect her identity, argued that institutional changes are needed.

“Only 10 per cent of assaults on Quebec campuses ever get reported,” she said. “And from that 10 per cent, how many actually get any follow-through? Accountability is incredibly hard to achieve at Concordia,” she said.

said Olivia.

“The issue with SARC is that it’s not staffed enough to deal with the entire Concordia population,” comprised of over 50,000 people, Olivia added. “Rates of sexual violence are incredibly high—over one in three people will be assaulted on campus in Quebec. We need SARC to be well-staffed, which includes raising budgets.”

Drummond said she felt that SARC was well-equipped by the administration, but that more can always be done. “I think that with a community of this size, we can always have more counselors and resources,” she said.

If Concordia wants to fix its rape culture, Olivia believes the university must invest in better prevention. She criticized Concordia’s online sexual violence trainings, which were made mandatory by Bill 151. 

She said all mandatory trainings should be annual, in-person and involving a facilitator. While athletes and student leaders do have mandatory trainings that fit these criteria, Olivia believes this should be extended to the whole student body. “If Concordia wants to call itself a next-generation university or a feminist space, it needs to care about survivors more than its bottom line.”

Processing Violence

Once survivors consult with SARC, they are encouraged to file a complaint if they are comfortable, Drummond explained. According to Concordia’s policy, complaints are formal measures aimed at taking action against alleged perpetrators. 

The report makes a distinction between informal complaints, which “are often resolved to the satisfaction of both parties,” and formal complaints, which “can lead to disciplinary measures.” 

Informal complaints can result in an apology letter, community service, or a no-contact agreement, Drummond said. It is a non-disciplinary option, but can escalate to a formal complaint.

Formal complaints involving students will be sent to the Office of Student Tribunals, where a hearing will take place. If a survivor’s case involves a member of the administration or faculty, an investigation is planned. Disciplinary action may be taken, and final results are in the hands of panelists trained in part by SARC, Drummond explained.

Formal complaints can lead to a note on file, suspension, restricted access to the campus, expulsion or firing. According to the latest annual report, 18 complaints were reported in 2021-2022. 

Sexual violence complaints are handled by the Office of Rights and Responsibilities (ORR), the body charged with resolving all incidents where the Code of Rights and Responsibilities has been allegedly violated.

When Leblanc attempted to file a complaint with the ORR, she was met with seemingly endless problems.

“The whole time I dealt with the ORR, nothing was explained to me. It felt like I wasn’t worth their breath.”

Because sexual violence had been involved in her case, Leblanc wanted to take it to a student tribunal. She claimed her requests were ignored by ORR members.

Leblanc spent her summer in Zoom meetings with the ORR, forced to retell her story multiple times to many different people. She recalled Drummond sitting in during one of the meetings and offering her words of support, but nothing substantive came out of their interaction.

“We are not a reporting office. We just receive disclosures, provide support and provide education,” said Drummond, explaining that reporting is handled by the ORR.

Bill 151 stipulates that universities must have separate policies pertaining to sexual violence that distinguish them from other policies. While Concordia meets these criteria, students have criticized the university for not having a body independent of the ORR to handle cases of sexual violence.

Drummond affirmed that SARC works very closely with the ORR on cases of sexual violence, helping guide members as they deal with complaints. Additionally, students who sit on student tribunals are given trainings by SARC for when they have to deal with sexual violence cases.

The Policy Problem

Concordia’s Standing Committee on Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Violence (SMSV) was created in 2018, following the implementation of Bill 151. 

According to Concordia Spokesperson Vannina Maestracci, the SMSV “explores ways to strengthen prevention and response and so it reviews the policies, looks at responses, training and so on.” The SMSV does not rule over issues of sexual violence at Concordia, but rather looks into the policies and procedures used in such cases.

In 2018, Concordia student Elena, who has been given a pseudonym to protect her identity, sat as her union’s representative on the SMSV. At the time, the committee forced members to sign non-disclosure agreements with the university. Elena refused to sign the NDA and Concordia eventually stopped asking for it, despite her constant presence at the committee.

Elena recalled a board room filled with administration officials, lawyers and faculty representatives. Each meeting would begin with a lengthy speech from one of Concordia’s lawyers.

“Sometimes, they would send us massive documents the night before so that we didn’t have time to read through them in time,” Elena said. “We students would stay up all night making notes and organizing, and we’d enter meetings with solutions.”

After poring over reports, the students wanted to give their input. “They told us, ‘that’s really not what you should do in this meeting, we’re just here to discuss and get a general vibe. You’re all very loud.’ They wanted to let everyone speak, but nobody besides us had read the documents,” Elena added.

Elena recalled survivors standing before the committee, sharing their stories and experiences. “The administration sat in silence and rolled their eyes,” she said.

“Watching survivors recount their trauma while crying hysterically as these overpaid motherfuckers scroll through Instagram, rolling their eyes, is just evil. That kind of behaviour is the true definition of SMSV,”

said Elena.

Since its inception, Concordia’s sexual violence policy has been under harsh scrutiny. According to Sophie Hough, former student representative on the SMSV, systemic change must take place. Hough is a member of Students for Consent Culture (SFCC), the group responsible for the 2017 Our Turn report, a national action plan that examined 14 Canadian universities’ sexual violence policies. The Our Turn report gave Concordia a D- on sexual violence policies.

“Students on campus have been advocating pretty tirelessly since 2011 for a standalone sexual violence policy,” she said. According to SFCC, a standalone sexual violence policy is completely independent from the Code of Rights and Responsibilities—a requirement they claim Concordia does not meet. 

For any changes in sexual violence policy, students, faculty, and other stakeholders must be included, Bill 151 states. The SMSV must have student representatives to function. In November 2022, the University appointed four new representatives from the student body at large.

When asked for the names of the current SMSV members, Maestracci would not disclose the information “due to concerns around the current climate for these members.”

The Link and The Concordian both reached out to SMSV Chair and Equity Director Lisa White for comment, but were denied. According to Maestracci, “the Chair of the Standing Committee still hopes to meet the CSU and GSA to discuss the issues with them directly, rather than through student media.”

An Alternative Approach

For some sexual violence survivors on campus, using the resources provided by the institution in which they were assaulted can be traumatizing. Many have to look outside the university for the help they need.

According to Deborah Trent, executive director at the Montreal Sexual Assault Centre (MSAC), universities are legally required to have services, procedures and policies in place to deal with sexual violence.

If universities fail to follow their own procedures, Trent said, survivors have the full right to seek guidance outside the institution.

“They have every right to press charges; they have every right to go to the police,” she explained. “But for a whole lot of people, it’s a really difficult decision.”

Since 2010, the organization has operated a Sexual Violence Helpline to ensure survivors have a place to share their experiences and get information and resources that best fit their case.

Nonetheless, since the SMSV boycott began in October 2022, students and workers have mobilized to create an alternative within Concordia. 

In order to combat the restrictive nature of the committee and call for a complete restructuring of the university’s sexual violence policies, a grassroots, worker-led group called the Inter-organizational Table for Feminist Affairs (ITFA) was created.

ITFA contains a variety of student and worker groups at the university, including the CSU, GSA and TRAC. They aim to find solutions to sexual violence at Concordia from and for the people most affected by the issue. 

TRAC delegate Mathilde Laroche said that the main problem with the current SMSV committee is rooted in its lack of student inclusion. “It doesn’t give any space for students to be involved and informed or to have the right information to participate in the decision-making,” they said.  

Julianna Smith, the CSU’s external affairs and mobilization coordinator, believes that very little meaningful change can be made through the SMSV. “Right now, the students are completely outnumbered on the SMSV committee,” said Smith. “So even when we are able to mobilize as students and work together, we’re always outvoted so we can’t actually put any initiatives forward.”

The need for student-centred solutions was an important part of the decision to boycott the SMSV. 

“ITFA works within a transformative justice framework. It is important to have an organization that is authentically interested in addressing sexualized abuses of power,” said GSA representative Akinyi Oluoch. 

“Addressing these abuses at their root will require worker, student, community, and survivor-led processes of justice,” she added.

Infographic by Natasha Spinelli and Iness Rifay

With files from Hannah Vogan, Iness Rifay, Joëlle Jalbert, Maria Cholakova, Marieke Glorieux-Stryckman, and Zachary Fortier.

  • In a previous iteration of this article and the podcast, a quote mentioned a correlation between the way sexual violence and plagiarism are handled at Concordia. This quote was incorrect: sexual violence falls under the Code of Rights and Responsibilities and plagiarism falls under the Academic Code of Conduct.
  • In a previous iteration of this article, it was stated that 70 per cent of students were dissatisfied with the outcome of their case after dealing with SARC. This was incorrect: 70 per cent of students were dissatisfied with the reporting process overall.
  • In the article, a source mentions that Concordia does not have a mandatory in-person sexual violence training involving a facilitator for students. Concordia does offer such a training; it is mandatory for athletes and student leaders, and optional for the rest of the student body. The source believes it should be mandatory for all students. This clarification has been made.
Music On Repeat

 On Repeat: Fall songs edition

Need something for your fall playlist? The Concordian’s staff share their go-to fall songs.

Guillaume Laberge, Music Editor

“Death with Dignity” – Sufjan Stevens

It’s hard to put words on this song as it is genuinely one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking pieces of music I have ever had the pleasure to listen to. “Death with Dignity” is a folk track that sees Stevens opening up about his late mother in a truly touching manner. The gentle finger-picking guitar playing mixed with Stevens’ whispery delivery only reinforces the song’s theme and makes for a very intimate moment that suits autumn perfectly.

Saro Hartounian, Assistant Music Editor 

“Harvest Moon” – Neil Young

Where do I begin? It is THE fall song: the harmonica, the swish beat of the snare in the background, the sparse yet recognizable guitar riff played by the Winnipeg treasure. The harmonies of both Young and Nicolette Larson tie the song up into this calm accompaniment for your end-of-day fall activities, like sitting on the front porch on a Sunday evening. 

Dalia Nardolillo, Community Editor

“I Ain’t Worried” – OneRepublic

A song that has been on repeat for me this fall is “I Ain’t Worried” by OneRepublic. With the stresses of keeping up with a healthy work-life balance always looming above my head, this song reminds me to not get stuck on life’s little problems and just focus on the bigger picture.

Jeremy Cox, Assistant Arts Editor

“Black Balloons Reprise” feat. Denzel Curry – Flying Lotus

I tend to gravitate towards the creepy and psychedelic during the spooky season. As a fan of hip hop, soul, and R&B, I stumbled across Flying Lotus a couple of years ago, who’s able to fit my autumn needs on many occasions. As his 2019 album Flamagra is my favorite of his works, I’d have to pick “Black Balloons Reprise” featuring Denzel Curry. 

Cris Derfel, Head Copy Editor

“Retrograde” – James Blake

I always turn to James Blake’s music when the leaves begin to fall. His earlier work especially suits the melancholy of the season, and “Retrograde” from his second album Overgrown is on repeat for me throughout most of October. Blake’s voice is haunting and melodic as the synths and bass come together in an explosive crescendo — suddenly you’re hit, and if you’re like me you keep going back for more.

Evleen Kaur, Copy Editor

“Sleep On The Floor” – The Lumineers

Picture this: it’s a cold fall evening and you run into a philosopher on the walk to your apartment. He stops you and asks, “If you go today, will you go in peace?” Your eyes sweep over the dying leaves everywhere and suddenly you’re reminded of the tattoo you still want to get. You remember the hike you never went for because you were too paranoid. Now I’d tell you there’s a better way to picture all that, but then I’d be telling you to listen to this song.

Maria Bouabdo, Sports Editor

“Hurricane” – Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan’s music hits different in the fall, but there’s something about “Hurricane” that makes me turn to this song in particular every year. It’s a beautiful song based on a true and heartbreaking story. I’ve always associated fall with endings and sadness, and to me, that cannot be encapsulated any better than it is in this song: the wrongful end of a man’s freedom.

Cedric Gallant, Podcast Producer

“The Ballad of the Runaway Girl” – Elisapie

This song is perfect when you finish school late, night time is creeping in, and you feel tired yet accomplished with your day. It’s moody yet stylish and relaxing, and it kind of prepares you for the winter to come. The vocals by Elisapie are mysterious yet endearing, the musical performance is detailed and serene. Honestly, I cannot recommend this song and this whole album enough, a true delight to the ears. 

Esther Morand, Arts Editor 

“Never Fight A Man With A Perm” – IDLES

This is the perfect song for midterm season, just before the snow falls. When you don’t know how you’re going to make it through even a single day, this song will carry you through. It’s the perfect song to help you write long essays and occupy your mind so you have energy to finish the semester!

Graphic by James Fay @jamesfaydraws


On Repeat

Our music editors share what they have been listening to lately

Guillaume Laberge, Music Editor

“As It Was” – Harry Styles

British pop star Harry Styles is back with his first single in three years. This indie-infused cut about a relationship falling apart despite the feelings still being there is definitely going to dominate the charts.

“Ice Cream” (feat. Rick Ross) – Freddie Gibbs

Another On Repeat, another aggressive rap banger filled with cocaine references. This time the culprits are Freddie Gibbs and Rick Ross, who team up for Gibbs’ fourth single ahead of his upcoming album SSS

“Lifestyle” (with Bas feat. A$AP Ferg) – Dreamville

This track off the new Dreamville D-Day: A Gangsta Grillz Mixtape sees Bas and A$AP Ferg venting about living the luxurious and playboy rapper lifestyle, while surfing and flowing over a wavy instrumental.

Saro Hartounian, Assistant Music Editor

“Intertwined” (feat. Elchin Shirinov and Roni Kaspi) – Avishai Cohen

Jazz bassist Avishai Cohen shows that you don’t need a sextet to have technical lounge madness as a trio. Each instrument cuts through the mix so clearly, “intertwining” with one another. Not for the faint of heart! 

“Broken Cog” – Meshuggah

From the band behind “Bleed,” the extreme prog metal band brings you “Broken Cog” from their Immutable album. Beware, the intro sounds like a slowed down version of “Down with the Sickness” by Disturbed, but heavier. Listener discretion is advised. 

“Micro-Aggressions” – Animals As Leaders 

The sub-genre of Djent’s holy triumphant Animals As Leaders released a new LP and I’m here for it. Tosin Abasi’s heavy technical guitar playing cuts through the mix with this symphonic single. They could easily give Polyphia a run for their money!


Graphic by Lily Cowper


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Why Do We Dream?

The performance featured improvisational dancing, singing, and digital orchestrating. CATHERINE REYNOLDS/The Concordian

By Lily Cowper and Ashley Fish-Robertson

The RISE Collective’s fifth experimental mini-opera explored lucid dreams as the last frontier for the unsupervised imagination

(Editors’ Note: This article was originally published without mentioning the original creator of Why Do We Dream?, Valentina Plata, who is a second-year Electroacoustics student at Concordia. Why Do We Dream began as a final project in Plata’s independent study, later coming to fruition after collaborating with RISE, and she is officially credited as having “sparked and driven” the show. See more of Plata’s work here.)

On Thursday, March 17, a performance in collaboration with Concordia’s Music Department and the Concordia Laptop Orchestra (R) sought to explore and recreate a lucid dream state using improvised sound, lights, and movement. 

The fifth performance in an ongoing series of mini-operas, Why Do We Dream? was put on by RISE, the newly-developed research cluster tied to Le PARC Milieux (part of Concordia’s Milieux Institute). RISE, which stands for Reflective Iterative Scenario Enactments, is led by Dr. Eldad Tsabary, co-founder of Le PARC as well as associate professor and coordinator of Concordia’s electroacoustics program.

Dr. Tsabary also works at the graduate level with students in Concordia’s Individualised Program (INDI), many of whom participated in the show. The applicant-led degree path allows students to combine interdisciplinary subjects to forge unique research paths, making connections between diverse genres of study. It makes sense then, that their collaborative efforts would result in performances like Why Do We Dream?, described on the Facebook event page as “intersensory” and “massively collaborative.”

All RISE performances are meant to operate in this way. Once an idea sparks interest, a research-creation team made up of Concordia professors and graduate students collaborate to combine many different mediums and techniques into one show. Each RISE performance re-envisions a different fear-based “cataclysmic” disaster through the lens of an opera, while simultaneously pushing the boundaries of what it even means to create an opera. The intention is to investigate both human consciousness surrounding various modern disasters, as well as the opera’s collaborative production experience itself. 

Every mini-opera in the RISE series has been executed differently. The first two premiered digitally during the pandemic lockdowns. Mixed messages, No Pants was highly experimental, taking form as a live-streamed computer orchestra where COVID-related memos sent out by the university were used as libretto. In contrast, Personal Pandemic was a full-scale planned film production with developed characters, scripts and composers. The third performance, Returning to the Trees was a stageless performance using experimental recordings taken deep in the forest. A fourth opera, Cyber Identity Crisis, premiered privately last month to a small group of Art History students. 

Why Do We Dream? was the natural next step for RISE organisers to challenge the traditional opera format.

The recent performance focused on an AI-controlled future and cyber surveillance, exploring the lucid dream as the last frontier of unsupervised imagination. This in-person format integrated many of the previous operas’ elements, complete with music by the CLOrk orchestra, strange costumes and masks by PhD INDI candidate Oonagh Fitzgerald, and live coding by Dr. Tsabary, a type of performing art where images and sounds are dynamically projected by writing computer codes in an improvised manner.


Upon entering, it’s clear that Why Do We Dream? was meant to replicate what it might feel like to walk through someone else’s dream — or nightmare, depending on how you choose to look at it. 

“It’s a dream,” Dr. Tsabary explained. “It’s supposed to be unexpected. I want whoever’s coming in to be overwhelmed by it.” 

Wandering between the three rooms, actors, some masked and some not, sang and recited lines that sounded as if they’d been plucked directly from someone’s mid-sleep garble. According to Tsabary, the libretto was written using phrases pulled from actual dream journals.

Visitors who paid special attention to each room were afforded the chance to appreciate small, and at times unusual, details. In one room there were several dice, all positioned so that the number five was facing upwards. Several inquisitive visitors could be seen reflecting on these details, with some attempting to make sense of their presence.

The first room, with its profuse darkness, featured an individual sitting inside of a tent, surrounded by string lights. From inside the tent, the performer treated visitors to a simultaneously captivating and perplexing sonic experience consisting of eerie sound effects. These effects included squeaky violins being played, the distant sound of alarms, and clicking noises. A breathtaking view of Montreal’s skyline served as the backdrop, complementing the performance. 

The second room was much more spacious, and featured a brilliant mix of artistic practices consisting of dancing, painting, acting, playing music, and more. Walking into this room was disorienting to say the least. There was a lot to take in. Despite the diverse display of mediums all occupying the same space, the performance in this room maintained a remarkable unity.

The final room appeared to pay tribute to the enigmatic and even spiritual nature of our dreams. One person wandered around the room handing out tarot cards, while two actors sat on the floor of the room observing their own choice of cards. It was unclear whether they were satisfied or discontent with their choices. Additionally, another person made the rounds of the room, handing visitors small white pieces of paper. Each of these papers had a message scrawled on them. For example, one of them, in delicate handwriting, read: “dancing is like painting but with your body.”

The opera’s libretto was written using phrases from dream journals. CATHERINE REYNOLDS/The Concordian

It’s impossible to not appreciate the amount of work that went into bringing this interdisciplinary event to life. Each space offered a unique opportunity for visitors to lose themselves in the unfamiliar, while perhaps reflecting on and attempting to decipher their own dreams in the process. 

RISE is one of several interdisciplinary initiatives at Concordia where researchers with diverse interests can come together using their unique expertise to explore artistic mediums while investigating important issues in society. Why Do We Dream? subtly showcased the in-depth works of both undergraduate and INDI graduate students who seem to not only be interested in the RISE experiment, but in collaborating with each other. 

For this reason, the subject matter for this show was particularly fitting. The convergence of so many different talents may have appeared odd or disorganized, like dreams tend to be, but that messy network of connections is likely the key to a more holistic understanding of our modern world.

“I don’t see things as messy, I see them as [..] multiplicitous,” explained Dr. Tsabary, on the collaboration process behind Why Do We Dream? and previous RISE performances. “[It is] something involving a lot of people, each one contributing their own thing, and it comes together to be something very interesting.”

The next mini-opera in the RISE series will take place on April 7, and is anopera about personal losses due to technological failures,” as described by Dr. Tsabary. The play will explore the immortality of online presence. 

Keep up with RISE events and discussion sessions on, or at Le PARC Milieux.


Photos by Catherine Reynolds


Art event roundup: spring edition

By Ashley Fish-Robertson & Véronique Morin 

Here are nine noteworthy events that are worth keeping on your radar!

With the end of another school year approaching and the onset of warmer weather, more people will be flocking to the city’s cultural venues. As The Concordian wraps up their last print issue of the school year, our arts editor and assistant arts editor share nine events to kick off springtime.   

Photo by Catherine Reynolds

Infographic by Simon Pouliot


On Repeat: contributor’s edition

Our contributors share what they have been listening to lately

Anthony Issa

“Totally Fine” – PUP

Toronto group PUP dropped a banger song that pop-punk fans can enjoy in time for their next mental breakdown. With chunky guitar riffs and self-destructive lyrics filled with dark humour, “Totally Fine” is a great taste of what to expect on their upcoming album. The track is accompanied by a hilarious music video about the band selling out, leaving the indie scene, and becoming billionaires by building an evil real estate empire. Following the popular trend that all billionaire philanthropists seem to be into these days, they travel to space and rock out in astronaut gear. 

Jacob Wade-Vallance

“Anything But Me” – MUNA

MUNA has nailed it once again. With their follow up to the viral queer love song “Silk Chiffon,” “Anything But Me” is a breakup bop and a wave goodbye to a toxic relationship, with killer lyrics.

Nadia Trudel

“Feel My Rhythm” – Red Velvet

“Feel My Rhythm” might not cure your seasonal depression, but it might help. The song has this delusional optimism that’s almost creepy: classic Red Velvet. Sonically it’s pretty, elegant, and dreamy, a true successor to their previous hit “Psycho.” It samples Bach, so mix classical strings with some modern pop, a trap beat, soaring chorus, fun rap verses, and signature Red Velvet vocals and you have a springtime anthem and homage to the beauty of art. 

Aaron Bauman

“Troubles” – Denzel Curry feat. T-Pain

Denzel Curry’s gritty flow blended with T-Pain’s angelic vocals on this bouncy track creates a perfect song for a window-down cruise just in time for the sun’s return. This track comes as the final single of Denzel’s upcoming album’s rollout.

Curtis Savage

“i’m not gonna kill you” – Nemahsis

Nemahsis’ track from her breakout EP eleven achers is a soul-wrenching demand to not be treated like a threat. She somberly reflects in this R&B ballad over the pressure she feels to repress her Muslim identity in her western surroundings. Her voice gently carries through the song as she laments on her frustration to be accepted. 

Oliver Eng

“Heavy” – Nigo feat. Lil Uzi Vert

“Heavy” is what you get when you put Lil Uzi Vert on a drill beat and let talent do its thing. It’s catchy and a perfect representation of who NIGO and Uzi are as people. The song is loud, heavy and it shakes your body. You can’t go wrong with this one.

Owen Cole

“Vocoder” – Floating Points

Returning to his dancefloor roots, Floating Points has crafted one of the biggest club tunes of recent months. After playing a string of after-hours gigs with Four Tet and even Skrillex throughout the U.S., Floating Points seems hungry to get the dancefloor pumping once again after the more subdued Crush from 2019, and the new age/ambient jazz Pharoah Sanders collaborative Promises from 2021. 

Sydney Gastaldo

“What Happened To The Class of ’65?” – Damien Jurado 

I was first introduced to Jurado’s music through the show Shameless. Something about the song stuck out to me immediately and after the episode, I looked up the track that was played, “Beacon Hill,” and ended up listening to almost all of the singer/songwriter’s discography.  Jurado has been one of my favorite artists ever since and his newest single “What Happened To The Class of ‘65?” — a song which encapsulates what he does best: storytelling. Overall, it’s a captivating track with intimate and vulnerable lyrics and beautiful instrumentalism. 

Jake Beacock

“Drink The New Wine” – Bauhaus

Recorded during lockdown last year, “Drink The New Wine” has come as a pleasant surprise for post-punk lovers. Bauhaus manages to maintain their unique essence: a spectral, gothic sound that makes you feel beautifully delirious. Go on, take a sip!


Graphic by Lily Cowper


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On Repeat

Our music editors share what they have been listening to lately.

Guillaume Laberge, Music Editor

“OPEN A WINDOW” (feat. Tyler, The Creator) – Rex Orange County

This simple and harmless track should put a smile on everyone’s face. The strings are infectious, the singing is very heartwarming and Tyler, The Creator’s verse is as good as it gets.

“10 More Commandments” (feat. Diddy) – Benny The Butcher

This song is a follow up to “Ten Crack Commandments” by The Notorious B.I.G. In this new version, Benny The Butcher dives into the basic rules of what it takes to be a good crack cocaine dealer. If you’re looking for a career pivot, start taking some notes of what he is saying here.


This new cut off the latest ROSALÍA album sees the Spanish artist mix her angelic voice with a dreamy instrumental to create a sweet and catchy tune that will make your head bop.

Saro Hartounian, Assistant Music Editor 

“Pumpin’” – Joe Satriani

Mr. Satch Boogie is back with his signature Ibanez guitar tone. The guitar virtuoso has carefully made sure that his song sounds like the title with the pumpin’ organ and guitar rhythms.  

“Shotgun” – Soccer Mommy

Ever wanted to hear what a bastard song by the Cocteau Twins and Silversun Pickups would sound like? Look no more with Soccer Mommy’s distinct dissonant undertones, shoegaze-y feedback, and effects exploring the topic of backseat intimacy.  

“Initiation” – ✝️✝️✝️ (Crosses)

Deftones frontrunner Chino Moreno lets his bubbly, choral voice loose in this twisted Fiona Apple-esque piece. The heavy use of synths make the overall gloomy song sound like it would be perfect in a Tim Burton score.    


Graphic by Lily Cowper


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Concordia Student Union News

Up for election! A brief profile of this year’s Concordia Student Union Executive Candidates

Concordia’s Student media comes together to profile this year’s CSU executive candidates

To cover this year’s CSU elections, The Concordian, The Link and CJLO News teamed up to interview several executive candidates. CSU elections will be held between March 15 – March 17.

Elijah Olise, general coordinator

Interview conducted by Zachary Fortier and Mohammad Khan, The Link 

Elijah Olise is an urban studies student, currently working as a community organizer. Before running for general coordinator he planned to run as the CSU’s external coordinator in an effort to combine his work regarding housing, food security and community connection to Concordia and student government.

“I was hoping to connect the campus to work that I’m doing outside [school] and break down the walls of academia. To develop a mutually beneficial relationship for students as well as community members who are particularly part of marginalized communities.”

Olise wants to focus on further connecting the Concordia community and facilitating more student involvement with the CSU.

“I think it’s important to really invest more heavily into how we can build community,” said Olise.

As general coordinator he will focus on fostering this community through development of more clubs and events and encouraging greater democratic involvement within the CSU.

An ability to lead by example coupled with his decisiveness are some of the qualities Olise believes he possesses that will make him a good fit for general coordinator.

“When it’s necessary I’m decisive and ready to move forward on certain goals, past the talking phase and I encourage and inspire others around me to do exactly the same.”

Olise said some of his key values are community, inclusion, justice and sustainability.


Sean Levis, sustainability coordinator 

Interview conducted by Cedric Gallant , CJLO News Editor

Sean Levis is a fifth year philosophy student at Concordia. In 2020 he began living at the Woodnote Solidarity Cooperative where he joined the finance committee, later becoming their treasurer. His major goals are to create greater institutional stability within the CSU and greater housing sustainability to Concordia students through supporting the Woodnote.

“The reason I chose sustainability was when I first moved into the Woodnote I realized that there was not a lot of support to ensure the sustainability of the organization itself,” said Levis.

“The reason why I’m running for the CSU sustainability coordinator is I think there are a lot of initiatives with regards to sustainability that need to be done within the Woodnote and I think there are some sustainability initiatives at the CSU that need to be undertaken as well.”

Levis wants to ensure that CSU councilors are more democratically connected to the faculties which they represent and held more accountable to accomplishing students wishes.

Encouraging more grassroots organizing by the student body, is one of Levi’s major goals. “The ability of students to organize in their member associations is somewhat limited because they don’t have the support or the resources that they could otherwise have from the CSU.”

Another of Levis’ key focuses is bringing food sustainability initiatives to the Woodnote to mitigate food insecurity. In addition to providing free hygiene products and bringing a composting program to the building.


Sabrina Morena, Loyola coordinator 

Interview conducted by Evan Lindsay, Co-News Editor of The Concordian

Sabrina Morena is a third year human relations student at the Loyola campus. Some of Morena’s major goals as Loyola coordinator are to create more food options at the Loyola campus and creating a greater presence at the CSU there.

“I’ve been at Loyola the whole time throughout my undergraduate degree. […] There was a lack of presence of the CSU as well as lack of student life and sometype of engagement,” said Morena. “There should be some type of presence and some type of student life to make it more engaging and make those students who attend Loyola all the time feel like they matter as well.”

Morena said she wants to create more food options for students at Loyola or even create a discount card for restaurants around the campus. She also wants to bring more events like job fairs, orientation fairs and markets to the campus.

As Loyola coordinator Morena would try to highlight some of Loyola’s existing features like the Hive Café, a solidarity co-op program of which she is a board member.

“Many people I speak to in my classes don’t even know that the Hive exists or they might know but, they don’t know where it’s located,” said Morena.

“I want to bring more attention to [the Hive] because there could be some really cool initiatives that could be implemented at this location as well.


Meryem Benallal, finance coordinator 

Interview Conducted by Zachary Fortier, The Link 

Meryem Benallal is a second year student in political science. She has managed multiple companies, including her own, which lead to her running for the finance position.

“I opened my painting company with my husband. We had to do all the budgeting and the nitty gritty of a business. I learned a lot from that,” said Benallal. In addition to this, Benallal worked with two daycares managing their salaries, number of kids, different classes, and other regulations.

Benallal is a full time student and also a parent, which influences some of her biggest goals as finance coordinator. “My number one priority this semester is to hopefully fund or ease the struggles of student parents that I strongly empathize with.”

One of the important roles of the finance coordinator is to provide transparency to students on where their money goes – something Benallal thinks is very important

“Transparency is related to the students’ vision of where and how much they want to fund. I think we should first listen to what students want and their needs.”

Some of the areas that Benallal thinks require more funding are bursaries and CSU daycares. She also wants to provide greater transparency to students on where their tuition money goes and what students get out of that funding.


Fawaz Halloum, internal affairs coordinator 

Interview conducted by Cedric Gallant, CJLO News Director

As the executive primarily responsible for clubs and spaces, Fawaz Halloum will work to guide student clubs, as well as organize communications within the CSU itself, including some financial matters. Halloum will also work to organize anti-oppression training within the CSU and the larger student body.

In his final year at Concordia. Halloum will draw on his experience as a founder of the Concordia Mycological Society.

“I truly hope to see more engagement from student clubs in experiential learning opportunities,” said Halloum.

“I do have a plan of creating a specialized fund for internships for mature enough clubs […] where they could conduct an internship if it’s appropriate to their mandate.”

One of his other goals is to create a special fund for journals for undergraduate scientific or arts programs.


Asli Isaaq, academic and advocacy coordinator 

Interview Conducted by Zachary Fortier, The Link 

Asli Isaaq is a second year sociology student. In the past she has been involved in the ASFA, particularly working in the Anti-Racism and Anti-Sexual Violence Taskforce. She was also president of her CEGEPs student association.

“Student advocacy comes with student mobilization,” said Isaaq.

“It’s very difficult for us to advocate for students if students aren’t involved first. Before we get to the step of advocating for students we first have to rally students behind us,” said Isaaq.

In addition to this, Isaaq said she wants to “set a new tone” with Concordia’s administration.

“I don’t doubt the incredible work that the past student execs have done. But clearly there is a point where something isn’t clicking,” said Isaaq.

“There has to be a point where we strategize and figure out how we can get what students want and also get this university on our side.”

Following the pandemic, Isaaq thinks students are missing support from the administration. She wants to ensure that students are not being penalized by the administration for how they are proceeding with education throughout the pandemic and beyond.

You can listen to the full interviews with each of these candidates on the CJLO News Podcast.

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On Repeat: Toro y Moi, Pusha T & Alanis Morissette

Our music editors share what they have been listening to lately


Guillaume Laberge, Music Editor

While I was mostly busy listening to a new album a day for the past month for another piece, I still managed to find the time to listen to the hot singles that were being released. With that said, here are three songs that have been “On Repeat” for me.


This might be Conway”s most personal track to date, as he drops bar after bar about some of the most gut-wrenching events of his life, like the suicide of his cousin, or the death of his son. A truly captivating listen.


This song feels like having a jam session with your friends. The smooth vocals mixed with this incredibly catchy bassline and the guitar solos at the end all make for such a feel-good experience.


This aggressive cut from cokerap king Pusha T sees the MC in his bag with his usual cocaine references and luxurious one-liners over a killer instrumental.

Saro Hartounian, Assistant Music Editor

Lately, I have been finding myself going back to artists that I would listen to and see live back in 2019 — damn that was three years ago… Anyway, here are some singles that could fit your weekend vibe, courtesy of me!


Have you ever wanted to listen to an 18-minute song from a critically-acclaimed stoner acid band? This jammy single will make you melt into whatever you’re sitting on (maybe) with its bubbly, mellow vocals and outback-esque rhythm. Uluru eat your heart out!


This song will take Stereophonics’ loyal fans back to their Performance And Cocktails album. Kelly Jones’ rough voice pierces through the song’s brit-pop guitar riff, reassuring listeners that they haven’t changed their style, and have rather merely adapted through the years.


Looking to reconcile with a friend or loved one to “reach out and make amends?” Well, look no further because the ’90s national treasure’s latest single will have you feeling like doing just that. A stripped song with just piano, strings, and the infamous Jagged Little Pill voice.

Listen to this week’s “On Repeat” playlist here:

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Art Event Roundup: March

By Ashley Fish-Robertson & Veronique Morin

Spend some time this month treating yourself to a variety of exhibitions, performances, and more  

There’s perhaps no better way to usher in spring than with some visits to Montreal’s cultural venues. This month offers events that will especially appeal to the Concordia community. 


  • FASA’s Black Cinema Club will be presenting movie screenings for four weeks as part of their Black History Semester programming. The first screening will be of Ganja and Hess, and will take place on March 16 at 6 p.m. Location: 1515 Saint-Catherine St W, EV 1.615.


  • The MAI will be presenting Nayla Dabaji’s latest exhibition titled documentaire en dérive from March 16 until April 16. Dabaji’s work centres on themes of migration, temporality, and more. Location: 3680 Jeanne-Mance St., suite 103.  


  • A gallery tour and discussion of Manidoowegin with artist Maria Hupfield will take place from March 17 to 19 as part of Concordia’s Conversations in Contemporary Art. Location: 5455 De Gaspé Ave. in room 110. 


  • Nicolas Party’s latest exhibition Mauve Twilight is on display at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts until Oct. 16. This exhibition highlights Party’s signature whimsical style, offering over 100 works painted in saturated colours. Tickets can be purchased through the MMFA’s website


  • Agora will be presenting NIGHTLIGHT, a virtual dance show by George Stamos from March 11 to 20. Tickets can be purchased through the venue’s website


  • Concordia’s Wellness Ambassadors and the Department of Creative Art Therapies will be virtually presenting The “art” of self-care series. Students will be afforded the opportunity to hop on Zoom and create art in a welcoming virtual environment. This event takes place every Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. until April 12. The link for this series can be found on Concordia’s webpage


  • RAGE – ORESTEIA REVISITED, written by Aeschylus, is a collage performance with an ensemble of Concordia students that will explore rage and revenge. This event will take place from March 16 to 19 at the D.B. Clarke Theatre. Location: 1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W.


Visuals courtesy James Fay


PHOTOS: Montrealers organize in solidarity with Ukraine

Last week, numerous demonstrations across Montreal showed support after Russian forces attacked Ukrainian territory

See photos from Sunday’s rally (Feb. 27).


Art event roundup: February

By Véronique Morin and Ashley Fish-Robertson

Shake off those winter blues with some exciting new art events this month

With midterm season looming in the (very) near future, you might be tempted to make the most of any last-minute free time you have before hitting the books. Here are some noteworthy events that will give you a hearty dose of inspiration needed to ace your assignments. 

In-person exhibitions

  • House of Skin: Artists Sabrina Ratté and Roger Tellier-Craig present an exhibition inspired by David Cronenberg’s films at La Cinémathèque québécoise. Located at  335 De Maisonneuve Blvd. E until March 20.
  • Jouer avec le temps: Photography exhibit featuring circus artists presented at TOHU. Located at 2345 Jarry St. E until March 13. 
  • An Exhibition by Marven Clerveau: Visions Hip-Hop QC: Exhibition of works by painter Marven Clerveau which gives an overview of Quebec’s main hip hop figures at the Phi Centre. Located at 315 Saint-Paul St. W until March 26.
  • Lashing Skies : Audio experience presenting five original stories related to events in New York City on 9/11. Located at the Phi Centre from Feb. 17 to May 15.
  • The Disintegration Loops: Living Sound presents this immersive installation featuring works from composer William Basinski. Located at the Phi Centre from Feb. 17 to May 15.
  • JJ Levine – Queer Photographs : Artist JJ Levine presents his photography work at the McCord Museum this month. The museum will also host an online opening of the show on Feb. 16. Located at 690 Sherbrooke St. W from Feb. 18 to Sept. 18.


  • NFB Film Festival: Several special events are underway courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada to celebrate Black History Month, including screenings and Q&A sessions. This year’s theme is centred around Black Health and Wellness. 
  • Silver Screen Sundays: Cinéma du Musée and The Film Society will return with their biweekly screenings of classic films. They will be showing the cult classic Casablanca on Feb. 20.


  • 18 P_R_A_C_T_I_C_E_S: Artist and performer Andrew Turner presents a 60-minute show that offers a hearty dose of humour, moments of absurdity, and a sharp tone. Presented at La Chappelle Scènes Contemporaines, located at 3700 St-Dominique St. from Feb. 16 to 19.
  • Marie-Pascale Bélanger + Jordan Brown: This double program features the work of Bélanger, inspired by tales she was told as a child, and Brown’s choreography, structured around wool and knitting. Presented by Tangente Danse at Edifice Wilder – Espace danse, located at 1435 De Bleury St. from Feb. 19 to 22.


Visual courtesy Galerie Robertson Arès

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