Reflections on the three-day strike

Don’t cross picket lines.

February started off strong at Concordia with the three-day strike from Jan. 31 to Feb. 2. In total, over 10,000 students were on strike—a dramatic increase from the 6,000 I’d initially reported, as many departments voted at the last minute to strike. 

For those who participated in picketing efforts, the university was a whirlwind of activity. Though many classes were canceled in solidarity with the strike, others insisted on ‘business as usual’. To enforce the strike, student volunteers stationed outside classes to create blockades and discuss with students and professors who attempted to cross the lines. In these interactions, many questions arose. 

Why don’t you picket outside Legault’s house? This sentiment was expressed by those who questioned the efficacy of  striking within the university. While it is true that Concordia is not to blame for the tuition hikes, many have expressed the desire for the administration to fight harder. This sentiment is exacerbated by Concordia’s recent announcement of a bursary program for out-of-province students based on academic achievement, which provides a mere Band-Aid solution (and is based on an unfair meritocracy).  

In addition to putting pressure on the administration, the strike sought to increase visibility for the movement against tuition hikes and to gather momentum toward the threat of a general unlimited strike. A larger-scale strike would apply great economic pressure on the Quebec government and hopefully force the students’ demands to be heard. 

For the strikes to be fully effective, however, wide-spread involvement and solidarity is essential. This was sometimes an issue, as certain professors encouraged students to cross picket lines or attend class online. To cross a picket line disregards the democratic decision of the student body to go on strike. We should all be united for the common cause of advocating for accessible education—students and faculty alike. 

Though obstacles were encountered, I would argue the strike was widely successful. Classes were disrupted, meaningful discussions took place, and many more people are now aware of the strikes and what they represent. The dedication of student volunteers was commendable, and it was especially inspiring to see those who were not even striking show solidarity. Many faculty members expressed their support, and MFA students were particularly kind. (Shout-out to the snack station that was set up in the MFA gallery for picketers at the VA building.) 

The 7th floor of Hall Building and the EV Junction, which served as dispatch stations for picketers, created a lively atmosphere in the university and provided a chance to meet people and recuperate. Various workshops including a film screening and zine-making took place, giving students a chance to redirect their energy and make connections. 

The feeling of success that has followed the strike is heartening, but also serves as a reminder that there is still work to be done. Stay updated on future actions such as general assemblies and ongoing mobilization efforts. It’s important to get as many students as engaged as possible to reach our goal. The fight for accessible education is for everyone—as such, we need everyone’s help. 

News Photo Essay

Picketers lead ‘shame convoy’ with Legault mannequin

Photos from Thursday: ‘Shame Convoy’

Photos from Wednesday: Classroom picketing

Arts Arts and Culture Student Life

Artist Spotlight: India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner, Performative Tree

India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner is a Black bi-racial artist, writer, curator and cultural worker from  Montreal. She is currently completing her BFA in Art History and Studio Arts at Concordia  University.

India-Lynn has previously had her writing published in the FOFA Gallery’s Undergraduate Student Exhibition Journal (USE) 2021. Most recently, her work has been shown at Fais-moi l’art gallery in May 2023 in a co-curated exhibition called “Tenderly Reminiscing.” India-Lynn was also a  facilitator/curator for the 2022 Art Matters Festival. She was the artistic and community alliances coordinator at La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse throughout 2022, producing La Centrale’s first digital publication, “[espace variable | placeholder]”. She is now a happy librarian and admin/finance coordinator at the Fine Arts Reading Room of Concordia University.

India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner, Performative Tree. Photo by BeNjamyn Upshaw-Ruffner

I walked around downtown Montreal with a small tree (money plant) in my backpack, and wore plant netting and gardening gloves. It is a commentary on urban planning and its lack of care for trees, reinserting them into cities for aesthetics rather than for their true purpose. I’m employing a playful take on the commodification of nature, asking what it means when I become a tree and wear nature as an accessory. 

India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner
India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner, Performative Tree. Photo by BeNjamyn Upshaw-Ruffner
India-Lynn Upshaw-Ruffner, Performative Tree. Photo by BeNjamyn Upshaw-Ruffner
Arts Arts and Culture Student Life

Poetry Spotlight: Jessica Wood

Jessica Wood is a second-year in creative writing student at Concordia University. A writer her whole life, she particularly enjoys writing creative non-fiction, poetry, and autofiction.

Originally from Vancouver Island, BC, she has been in Montreal for a year and a half and has loved every minute of it. This is the first publication of her writing, and she hopes it will be the first of many.

Graphic by Maya Robitaille-Lopez

In the Dead of Winter (I Can Feel Okay Again!)


in the dead of winter I can feel okay again. 

this week is already better! I’m tentatively hopeful, and defiantly confident that 

in the dead of winter, I can feel okay again. 

sure, my heating bill is higher than my friends, who warm their hands on a shared joint, shivering together like molecules as they puff and pass. 

and even though I don’t smoke, I’m standing out there too 

in the dead of winter. I can feel okay again! 

even though 

-my laundry freezes on the walk home (the laundromat dryers eat my quarters and spit out no hot air in return) 

-there’s salt water rings around my boots (I am using all of my towels to block off drafty windows) 

-I have to shovel the stairs if I want to get groceries (I pretend I’m a penguin, imploring myself to laugh when I slip on the sidewalk) 

I am hopeful. and I am confident. 

in the dead of winter, I can feel okay again.

Jessica Wood



What you need to know about the upcoming strike, and why you should join.

Tuition hikes? Student strikes. From Jan. 31 to Feb. 2, close to 6000 Concordia students across various departments will be on strike to fight against the looming tuition hikes. This is a major step in the mobilization efforts against austerity measures that threaten the future of our education. But first of all, what exactly will the strike look like and why is it important? 

For three days, classes of participating departments will be either cancelled (with the cooperation of faculty) or picketed. This means that student volunteers will be physically blocking classrooms and preventing business-as-usual. Certain departments have already decided to join the strike—including geography, urban planning, and community and public affairs—while many more have called General Assemblies to hold a deciding vote. 

Last week, the faculty of fine arts voted, nearly unanimously, to strike—an incredible victory, as this adds over 3000 students to the effort and signifies the only faculty-wide participation. 

Students may be concerned that strikes will negatively impact their studies. It’s helpful to know that student unions are protected in the same way as workers’ unions, so you cannot be penalized for missing classes due to a strike. 

Though striking may feel personally disruptive, the goal is to disrupt the system, which is essential to create real change. As stated on the strike information webpage of the Concordia Student Union, “Student strikes represent a withholding of academic labour and a disruption to the university and the economy at large.” 

Quebec has a long history of striking, which has proven the impressive results of such methods. The most striking example (pun intended) is the Maple Spring of 2012, the longest student strikes in Quebec’s history. Over 300,000 students mobilized against a planned 75 per cent increase in tuition rates, and the tuition increase was ultimately overturned. 

Twelve years later, the current efforts have drawn heavy inspiration from the past. There is a palpable sense of excitement brewing, echoed by the awareness of history being made once again. “This is potentially the biggest mobilization at Concordia since the 2012 strikes,” said Adam Semergian, a student in Concordia’s school of community and public affairs. Semergian is part of a dedicated group of individuals in the mobilization effort and the push for free tuition. For many, this is the ultimate goal—generating momentum toward a future with free education for all.  

These issues impact all students, regardless of whether your own tuition will be immediately affected. In light of this fact, I encourage everyone to get involved in whatever way you can. If your department is on strike, come help picket—fine arts students can sign up through the link in the Instagram bio of @fasalovesyou. If your department isn’t on strike, but you would like to promote a strike mandate, try contacting—you can also reach out to them for more information regarding meetings and mobilization efforts. 

When unjust measures threaten students, it’s easy to feel powerless. But don’t forget—students are some of the fiercest organizers out there, and we have proven again and again the power we hold. 

So what are you waiting for? Strike! 


Debt mountain: Concordia’s mounting money troubles

An in-depth analysis of Concordia University’s financial situation

Concordia University has a big issue brewing. This isn’t about exams or assignments, but about money—lots of it. The university’s financial statement for 2022-2023, along with their budget planning for 2023-2024, shows that it is deep in debt, which could cause serious challenges going forward.

Here is the deal: Concordia owes a ton of money, with payments due from now until 2059. This debt comes from government loans and a financial instrument called Senior Unsecured Debentures, which are big loans taken by the company or organization without offering any of their assets. 

Think of Senior Unsecured Debentures as an I-owe-you or a big promise to pay back money. The “unsecured” part means that if Concordia cannot pay, they have not promised to give anything specific in return, such as a building or equipment. This means Concordia is juggling a lot of financial promises for a long time.

To address concerns about the university’s ability to manage this debt, Concordia’s CFO, Denis Cossette, explains that debt is normal for educational institutions. For comparison, Concordia has a debt of $274 million against annual revenues of about $613 million. McGill University, with total liabilities of $4.211 billion, reports annual revenues of approximately $1.661 billion. 

This demonstrates a substantial financial structure to manage their liabilities. The University of Toronto, in contrast, has $895 million in debt against a much higher annual revenue of $4.3 billion. These numbers highlight that while debt is common in universities, the amount of debt relative to their income varies.

Adding to this, the university ended the 2022-2023 fiscal year with a $38.8 M deficit and has a net long-term debt of $274 M. They are also managing a hefty $162 M in lines of credit carrying past operating losses, emphasizing the gravity of their financial situation.

While Concordia offers a lively hub for its students, it also promises to take care of its staff, even after they retire, by providing plans for pensions and retirement benefits. However, these promises are like a big jar that Concordia must keep filling with money, which can be tough when there are many other expenses.

Balancing debt and keeping the university running smoothly is a tricky act, but Concordia has a plan for managing and paying for its big-ticket items such as buildings and tech equipment. For this situation, they have set up something called “sinking funds.” This is a fancy way of saying that the university is attempting to put money aside regularly to make sure they can manage these major expenses.

For the 2023-2024 fiscal year, Concordia is facing an uphill battle with projected total revenues of $613 M against expenses of $653.7 M. This means they are expecting yet again to spend more than they earn, furthering their financial strains.

Another significant concern is the potential drop in student numbers in light of the changes to tuition costs, as international and out-of-province student fees are increasing significantly. This could reduce the university’s revenue, adding to their financial woes. 

Cossette mentioned the creation of the Canada Scholar Awards Out-of-Province Awards, aiming to maintain accessibility for out-of-province students in response to these tuition hikes.

Due to these various issues, the university faces various kinds of financial risks. There’s credit risk, the danger that someone Concordia lent money to might not pay it back; market risk, when changes in interest rates or currency values can disturb Concordia’s finances; and liquidity risk, the risk that Concordia might not have enough cash when it needs it.

Investments and endowments are another significant aspect of Concordia’s money management. Endowments are large monetary gifts given to the university by individuals, but often have rules about how they should be used. Managing this money wisely is crucial for maintaining Concordia’s overall financial health. 

Concordia also makes money through other services such as retail stores, student residences and parking. But even with those extra sources of income, the big debt problem is not going away anytime soon.

To tackle these issues, Concordia has implemented measures such as freezing the salaries of top executives, continuing a hiring freeze for non-academic staff, and using reserve funds to reduce the current-year deficit. They also plan to strategically reduce expenses, such as payments to the pension deficit and managing non-critical activities, to create structural financial capacity. 

This could involve a more judicious approach to discretionary spending, optimizing administrative processes to reduce overheads, and postponing non-essential infrastructure upgrades or expansions. 

The university also relies heavily on grants and contributions, especially from the government. This can be compared to an allowance or financial support from family in that changes in support can really disturb the university.

Additionally, Cossette states, “We don’t anticipate issuing new long-term debt in the near future.” This approach is a part of Concordia’s strategy to minimize further financial strain and manage its existing obligations more effectively.

Concordia also has some ongoing legal issues and other commitments that come at financial cost.

What does all this mean for Concordia? It means that the university is at a crossroads where it needs to make some smart decisions about its money. The way it handles its debts and plans for the future will affect everyone at the university—students, faculty, and staff.


Stingers men’s basketball team watches the ball drop from the Sunshine State

The team maintains the tradition of playing exhibition games and team-practices in Florida for a week.

The men’s Stingers basketball team holds a yearly tradition, where the squad travels over the new year, in order to practice as a team and compete in friendly matches against schools outside of the RSEQ. For over a decade, the team has alternated between traveling to Nova Scotia to participate in Dalhousie University’s Shoveller Memorial Tournament, and playing exhibition games in Florida. As the Stingers flew east to play in the Maritimes last year, it was time to fly south and have fun in the sun to play in the Keiser New Year’s Classic tournament.

The team flew down on Dec. 26, and had an action-packed week-long trip. With the connections that Concordia Athletics had built in Florida for over a decade, the team had access to a gym at almost all times in order to shoot around. “Some days we’ll go in the morning, shoot for an hour and come back at night. Practice for two hours on game day,” said head coach Raskto Popović. “We’d have a shoot-around in the morning and then play a game at night.”

A main component of the trip involved trial and error in gametime situations by playing exhibition games against local universities in the Classic tournament. The Stingers faced three teams in the Sun Conference exhibition games. Concordia faced Keiser University on Dec. 29 (L 84-73), and two unfamiliar opponents in Ave Maria University on Dec. 30  (W 79-76), and Florida Memorial University on Jan. 2 (L 68-74). Although the Stingers only won their second game, it was a win over one of the highest scoring teams in the nation, who are currently averaging a whopping 97.4 points per game

Carleton University, who had been attending the New Year’s Classic for even longer than Concordia, agreed to participate in a conjoined practice with the Stingers, followed by a scrimmage.

“You want to go there and you want to play against good teams and get good competition,” said the Stingers head coach. “That’s the way to get better. Between those three games of high quality teams and the Carlton scrimmage, we really got a chance to practice, try different lineups, get different people in, and accomplish the goal of getting better over the Christmas break.” 

In between practices, the squad engaged in all sorts of activities, such as afternoons at the beach, shopping, and team dinners. “Team bonding is a very important thing as well on this trip,” emphasized coach Popović. “We mix up guys in different rooms so guys can hang out and get to know each other. This whole trip is so good for us, and we’re so lucky and appreciative to have alumni who support us so we can afford this trip.”

Among their final activities of the trip, the group went to watch UMiami beat Clemson on Jan. 3 by a decisive score of 95-82. After the game, players met with UMiami shooting guard Kyshawn George, who’s father, Deon, was an ex-teammate of Stingers assistant coach Dwight Walton.

Newly arrived forwards Gabriel Bourdages and Ba-Amara Djame especially capitalized off of the redeeming components of the stay. Not only were they  able to practice with their team, but they were also becoming familiar with players off of the court.


Three Concordia-affiliated wrestlers move a step closer to the 2024 Summer Olympics

Wrestlers from the Montreal Wrestling Club will be competing at the Pan-American games on the last weekend of February.

The team Canada wrestling trials leading to the 2024 Olympic games were held in Edmonton on the weekend of Dec. 15–17. The winners will compete at the Pan-American qualifiers on Feb. 29–March 2 in Acapulco, Mexico. The performances will determine who gets to go to Paris to compete in the 2024 Summer Olympics.

Five members of the Montreal Wrestling Club (MWC) of the National Training Centre, managed by Concordia Stingers wrestling coaches— father-son duo, David Zilberman and Victor Zilberman—had very successful performances. Three wrestlers earned tickets to Mexico, including Linda Morais (68 kg) in women’s freestyle, Alex Moore (86 kg), and Stone Lewis (74 kg) in men’s freestyle.

On Dec. 15, the first day of the competition, matches were held for the pool component, to determine winners who would face other competitors on the ladder. Montreal’s Fred Choquette won the pool decisively at 97 kg by defeating Brampton, Ontario’s Sarabnoor Lally 10-0. He was beaten by his MWC colleague, Riley Otto, in the ladder portion. Otto lost to Abbotsford, B.C.’s Nishan Randhawa in the final ladder matchup. Randhawa will be heading to Mexico, representing Canada in the 97 kg division.

Stingers prodigy and alumnus Alex Moore, the two-time Pan-American junior gold medalist who was elected as the Outstanding Wrestler of the Tournament in the USports National Championships last February, was able to qualify for Mexico by beating the Saskatoon Wrestling Club member and Flin Flon, Manitoba native, Hunter Lee

Moore is more focused on himself and improving bit by bit every day, consistently evolving his game. Rather than worrying about Lee and wrestlers within the country, the young athlete’s sights are set on potential Pan-American opponents. “I’m not preparing for the Canadian guys. I’m preparing for the international guys,” said Moore.

For now, Moore’s main concerns are directed towards preparing to face Yurieski Torreblanca Queralta, Cuba’s 86 kg Pan-American repeat champion as of last November in Santiago, Chile. Moore lost to the Cuban veteran in the Pan-American championship finals last year in Bueno Aires, Argentina. “The big challenge is definitely [Torreblanca]. He’s pretty jacked. You never know with the draw… but I don’t want to leave with the chance that I qualify or not. I want to prepare in a way that I’m able to beat everyone in the [division],” Moore said.

After Edmonton, Moore was able to take a break for about a week when he returned home, a rarity for wrestlers, who usually train for about six hours a day, six days a week. “Getting back into the groove of things is so hard, because you have such a strict schedule and you’re pushing really hard and it’s almost easier to just keep going and then to stop,” he said. “But I think it’s necessary to get a mental break from it. I got to see some friends and stuff, so it was nice.” 

Moore will be participating in the Brock Open, Guelph Open, and Western Open to stay in shape for Acapulco. The events take place on Jan. 14, 21, and 28, respectively.

The three qualified athletes are back in training, and are devising new plans with coach Zilberman to win at the highest level on this side of the Atlantic.


PSA: Don’t cut our courses

Course cuts are happening and I’m worried.

Concordia University has seen a decline in enrollment in the past couple of years. As a result, measures have been placed to cut 7.8 per cent of the university’s total costs, CTV reported. This news mostly covered its impact on staff; however, students should be concerned as well. 

As for the Fall 2024 semester, tuition is expected to increase by 33 per cent for out-of-province students. The decline in enrollment in recent years has already led to financial loss. Tuition is now expected to double for some students, which is expected to lower the annual enrollment rate even more.

The news about tuition hikes for out-of-province students was already upsetting. I remember the moment when one of my professors made the announcement that made my classmates and I go in shock: course cuts would begin as of Winter 2024. We learned this information before news outlets published their articles about Concordia’s budget cuts. The professor urged us to register for our courses for the upcoming semester as soon as possible, as she explained that courses with low enrollment by Nov. 15 could be eliminated.

Course cuts will now be a means for the university to limit its annual budget. This will not only be problematic in terms of schedule-making, but it could affect the entire student body’s future tuition as well.

I learned through listening to class discussions in my classes that low enrollment in a class ultimately means that a course with let’s say a cap of 25 students  would need to fill 80 per cent of its seats. The number, however, depends on the class size. 

I still have a number of courses to take before I finish my degree—a few program-based courses and electives. Course cuts could derail my graduation plans, as I’m hoping to finish my degree by the end of this year. Should my courses get cut, I’ll have to extend my studies even longer. I’ve been a student at the university for many years and have worked hard to get myself on track for graduation. It’s been an important goal of mine over the past few years, especially because there was a period when I was unsure about continuing my studies. I persevered, however, and I’d like to see it through.

Every student is in a unique position. Some students begin their studies halfway through the year, while others drop their courses for personal reasons. Life is unpredictable as it is, so it’s worrisome that course offerings might now be increasingly unpredictable as well.

Course cuts affect everyone—students, professors, and staff alike. They might help the university’s budget, but they would be disastrous for the Concordia community. This begs the question: are course cuts worth it at the expense of our studies?

Arts and Culture Community Interview

The art of leadership

Four leaders in and around Concordia’s community spoke on how they implement creativity into their leadership approach.

In a polarized world, it is important to have leaders who focus on positivity, encouragement, and humanity. Being a leader now means being approachable and open, working well with colleagues, and honouring one’s role and connections. From top executives to middle management, creative leaders seek out purpose in their decisions, turning the activity of leading people into a masterpiece.

“I see leadership as an art in complex strategizing and continuous motivation and support of my team at work as well as my community,” said Kseniya Shibanova, team lead at Keywords Studios, a gaming company in Montreal. Being adaptable and open-minded while staying firm and true to yourself at the same time is not an easy task, and for Shibanova, it requires creativity and strong vision.

Shibanova believes that there is no reason to limit your creativity when it comes to leadership—it’s important to keep testing different approaches.. “I’m always striving to be innovative and test various ideas with my team. It can be in finding new ways to motivate or in creating custom solutions that will satisfy the need and keep everyone happy at the same time.”

For Christopher Menard, head chef of Bottega Pizzeria, employee satisfaction is a top concern in team leadership. “It’s really important to me to make sure that my staff is happy. I try to strike a good work-and-life balance for everyone,” he said. 

The chef, who has been cooking professionally for over 20 years, believes that a team achieves better results with someone who leads naturally. “I have worked with many chefs, and in doing so [I] was able to really pick and choose my leadership styles. I know exactly what’s going on in the kitchen at any moment and always know whether or not we are ready for a busy service. This is art,” Menard said

Chrissy Jean, a learning and development specialist in Montreal, highlighted how crucial it is for organizations to provide training to aspiring leaders in their teams. “Just like any art, we also get better at being a leader through practice and continuously improving ourselves. I believe that leadership is not an entitlement in which someone is born into the role,” she said. 

According to Jean, investing in a broad vision can be a valuable strategy to improve ways of leading and guiding people:  “Leadership is a rewarding, fruitful and wonderful journey. Practice your resilience, open your mind to feedback, and keep working at the amazing artform, you will be empowered to lead your people to achieve the common goal.”

Michael Netto, teaching a  leadership diploma course at Concordia University, believes that leaders must steadfastly drive towards the goals that align with their visions. “Leaders need to not only consider the voices of those followers, but to the voices of those who offer opposing perspectives. Those perspectives may help in discovering innovative ways to drive towards their goals,” he said. 

Netto believes that leadership is not restricted or reserved for those in politics or industry: it is most definitely an art, coupled with scholarly learnings. “Learn from the ones who have walked before you, learn from those who walk beside you, and continue learning from those who follow. With an open mind, you can better lead to serve those around you,” he concluded.

Football Sports

Thirteen years later, Alouettes fans rejoice once again

The Montreal Alouettes defeated the Winnipeg Blue Bombers 28-24 in the 110th Grey Cup final.

The 110th Grey Cup, held on Nov. 19 in Hamilton, was a thriller. The Montreal Alouettes quarterback Cody Fajardo found wide receiver Tyson Philpot with only 13 seconds remaining to give the Alouettes the win by a final score of 28-24. This win came at the expense of the heavily favourite Winnipeg Blue Bombers, who beat Montreal in both of their regular-season matchups.

Thousands of Montreal Alouettes fans attended the team’s victory parade last Wednesday. It was the first championship parade in the city since 2010, the Alouettes’ last Grey Cup win. Following safety Marc-Antoine Dequoy’s emotional post-game speech, Quebec flags filled the Quartier des Spectacles’ Parterre, where the final celebrations took place.

The underdog mentality

“To see [the Alouettes] play this year was a model of courage and tenacity,” said Claire, a lifelong Alouettes fan. This victory is the sweetest she experienced: “…nobody thought they would win, and they did,” she said with emotion. 

Another fan by the name of René, has been getting season tickets for over ten years during the early 2000s. However he did not have a lot of faith earlier in this season. When the Alouettes won their last five regular-season games, he started believing in the team’s chances. “Even if they played a good game in Hamilton and lost, it would have been a good accomplishment. But they were able to win, so it is incredible,” he said.

The team in elation

Only one player from the 2010 championship-winning team was still with the Alouettes this year, former Concordia Stingers player Kristian Matte, and it was a special moment for the guard. “I have been playing football for 30 years. It is the first time I won a championship as a starter,” he said in an interview with The Concordian, “so for me, it is an incredible and unforgettable feeling, and we have the best fans in the world.” 

Defensive back Raheem Wilson had similar feelings and said it was the best moment in his football career. Luc Brodeur-Jourdain, the current offensive line coach and former CFL All-Star centre for the Alouettes, won two Grey Cups as a player with the team. He felt the same joy as when he had won as a player himself. “From the moment you step on the field, yes [it is the same feeling],” he said. “You’re like a kid; you feel the emotions.” 

For general manager Danny Maciocia, this win is the consecration of a stellar career. He won the 2005 Grey Cup as the head coach of the now Edmonton Elks and stopped Université Laval’s hegemony in the RSEQ as the head coach of the Université de Montréal Carabins. “It’s probably the number one [career accomplishment] on my list by far,” he said. “As a Montrealer who grew up watching the Alouettes, it doesn’t get any better than this.”

Mark Weightman, the president and CEO of the Alouettes, was slightly more nuanced. “Every time you win a championship, it’s always gonna be the top, so I would put it right there with all the other rings,” he said. A Concordia alumnus, Weightman first joined the Alouettes in 1996. He worked his way up the team’s hierarchy, eventually becoming president and CEO in 2013, until he was replaced in 2016. He came back to his old role earlier this year.


Concordia’s Ski & Snowboard Club is ready for their upcoming season

The club doesn’t have to ask icely if you want to come skiing.

With ski hills already open, Concordia’s Ski & Snowboard Club (CSSC) is ready for another exciting winter season of hitting the slopes.

Kicking off their 2023-24 season on Nov. 30 with a Reggie’s bar night, CSSC will be going on their first ski trip on Dec. 3 to Mont-Tremblant.

The club has about 2,000 members and welcomes all levels of skills, from beginner to advanced. Day trips, weekenders, and bar nights are some of the ways to socialize with peers in the club.

CSSC also boasts major sponsorships from the likes of RedBull and Burton, among other smaller apparel sponsors from Montreal. Members have access to discounts up to 25 per cent at Burton on a wide variety of gear.

For CSSC president Ajay Weinstein, giving more to members is his main goal for acquiring sponsorships. “Skiing is a ridiculously expensive sport,” he said but the club’s main goal is to make the sport a little more accessible.

The CSSC works with brands, mountains, and resorts to make it possible for students to participate at a lower cost. Day trips with bus and lift tickets cost between $80 to $100, and weekenders around $350—with everything such as lodging included. Trips can vary between 100 to 160 skiers, who leave from SGW campus at 6 a.m. to get first tracks. 

Weinstein also suggested students check out Poubelle de Ski on Saint Laurent for cheap seasonal ski rentals. It comes out to around $200 for a whole season, with skis and boots. 

The club’s skill inclusivity is the one thing that Weinstein is “most proud of.”  With about half of the participants just starting out in skiing and snowboarding, CSSC has been excelling in getting people into these sports.

If there is one trip that you shouldn’t miss out on, according to Weinstien, it’s the Jay Peak weekender. Three days of skiing and partying, plus a whole rented-out water park, in Jay Peak at the end of the season is sure to be remarkable..

The CSSC also has an active Discord channel for members to share information, connect,make friends and even carpool in case of if they missed the bus to a venue. If you were looking for updates they post most of their news through their Instagram for members to follow trip ticket drops and news about what is going on in the club. 

With 13 ski trips planned for their 2023-24 season, the CSSC has their hands full. With 11 day trips and 2 weekend trips, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved. Check out their website for trip calendars, and to get tickets for upcoming trips. 

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