Tag Archives: recruitment

This Is York! A Few Words on OUF


It was a sight (and sound) to behold: two floors of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre bustling with the excited energy of thousands of high-school students, their families, teachers and friends. They had come to the Ontario Universities’ Fair (OUF) to find help in making one of the most important decisions of their lives — picking a postsecondary institution that would suit their needs and desires.

Over the course of three days, more than 130,000 of them would approach the well-staffed booths and presentation rooms of the province’s universities with questions and concerns, filling their readily supplied tote bags with handbooks, notes, business cards and swag. Some came with a plan in mind and just needed a few particulars cleared up. Others, probably the majority, came wide-eyed and curious, eager — though also anxious — to explore the various possibilities for life after high school.

Student volunteer helping prospective student in the York U Science section








I felt immense pride when I first laid eyes on York’s L-shaped, which consumed an entire corner of the exhibition hall. Colourful, bold and spirited, it proclaimed what this university stands for: forward thinking, excellence, flexibility, diversity, community. The new Open Your Mind brand campaign, publicly unveiled here for the first time, really hit home. The energy emanating from the images and background videos seemed to repeat itself in the many conversations around the booth, in the shared laughs and stories in the presentation room upstairs. This was York indeed. This is the future.

When things run smoothly and everything looks so fantastic, it’s easy to forget the enormous amount of work that goes into creating such an impression of ease. I know many, many people — staff, faculty and an enthusiastic crew of student volunteers — made Herculean efforts to ensure that York looked fabulous during OUF. They (you!) proffered their expertise, their creativity, their problem-solving skills, their good cheer, their time. They sacrificed their weekend and maybe some regular hours of sleep.



On behalf of everyone at York: thank you. Thank you for all you did, because it really showed. It made a difference to the thousands of young people whose minds you opened through your gestures large and small. We handed out 22,500 handbooks in three days and got more than 3,000 requests for more information on our programs. None of this would have been possible without us working together as a team and as a community.


Proud to be part of it,



Division of Students Recruitment Officer Wins Bryden Alumni Award

This year’s Bryden Alumni Award presentation was held on Thursday, November 20 at the Royal Ontario Museum with more than 300 guests in attendance. The annual event honours the extraordinary achievements and contributions of York alumni. This year, a member of the Division of Students, Sonia Cianfarani (BA ’96), received the Local Hero award that recognizes her knowledge, passion and devotion to York.

Cianfarani considers herself more than a York representative; she is an integral member of the York University community. She shared that she considered herself privileged to be in a position where she can support and inspire current and future students in their journey at York. “I think I am a good representative to help students create the link between applying and then going on their way and leading to them to success,” says Cianfarani.

She began her work as a full-time employee in the Admissions Office in 1996, after previously working in the department as a work-study student. In 2001, she transitioned to the Recruitment team and began the critical role as a student recruitment officer. For the past 16 years, Sonia has built upon her experience as a York grad. “York has been my lifeline. York has been a big part of my life,” she revealed.

Cianfarani provides guidance and encouragement to mature, transfer and high-school students. She also ensures that these students have a successful educational pathway while at York. Sonia remains active in the York community as a member of four college committees and presents at the major recruitment events including Spring Open House and the Ontario Universities Fair. “For me it’s an easy job, I love what I do. I just feel like my job is very meaningful.”

For more news on the 2014 Bryden Awards, check out the story on YFile.