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Algonquin’s time to DARE as new building’s name is unveiled

“It’s an inspiring name because it’s edgy,”

The words were spoken by Rod Vanier, secretary for the Algonquin College Foundation Board in response to the unveiling of the new DARE District name for the innovation center at the college’s Minto Hall in the ACCE building Feb. 9.

“Entrepreneurship is edgy.”

Indeed, with the word DARE an acronym for Discovery, Applied Research and Entrepreneurship, the new name flashed across a video screen, showing the gathered audience how the new building would meet these challenges.

“It’s Algonquin’s time to dare,” said Cheryl Jensen, Algonquin’s president, as she took the stage.

Victoria Ventura, SA president, excitedly encouraged everyone to hashtag the new name: #daredistrict.

“The internet is going to love it,” Ventura said.

The college officials hope students and faculty will too.

“Indigenous culture will be a thread that runs throughout the DARE District,” said Jensen, assuring the audience that the pledge to support and encourage Indigenous culture would be lived throughout the school and not just within the DARE District.

Jensen thanked the provincial government for the $1.5 million grant for applied research that was recently announced. Through the new building, the grant will be put to good use and create dynamic new opportunities for the school and community.

“Algonquin is known as a trailblazer,” Peter Nadeau, chair of the Board of Governors, said, encouraging students and faculty to use the space and opportunities provided by the DARE District to their fullest potential.

Ventura invited students to use the space to study, socialize and relax, practice newly learned skills and imagine. She dared students to put their education first and to take a huge leap outside their comfort zone.

“Great things will happen inside the DARE District,” Ventura said.

The guests were invited to try the virtual reality headsets and experience the DARE District building in 3-D. The program was designed by the game designer students for the event.

“You think you’re in the building,” said Jensen when asked what she thought of the VR tour. Jensen thought the technology was great on two levels; allowing people to see what the new building will look like once completed and showcasing what the current learners can do right now.

The official opening of the DARE District building is 10 weeks away and the naming event last Friday ratcheted up the excitement for the ceremony to come later this spring.

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