By Meggie Sylvester

United Way Meggie
Nursing students Jordan Abram, Laura Cherubini, Trevor Goodyear and first-year public relations student Dylan Cain wine and dine at the fundraiser.


Wine enthusiasts often pair their tastings with lofty technical terms, but at this year’s workshop, students were able to kick back and enjoy a fall-inspired menu.

Student Affairs and Orientation officer Megan-Rose Martin coordinated the event on Oct. 7 with help from Brenda Mahoney, who acted as the wine sommelier for the evening’s festivities.

“Up until the late 1960s, people didn’t know what kind of grapes they were drinking.”

“It wasn’t the way it is now – it was all just a blend,” Mahoney said.

Guests received a six course meal at the event, including mini ricotta gnocchi and Moroccan lamb tagine.

All of the entrees were prepared by students in culinary arts and served by students in hotel and restaurant management.

“I enjoyed the Sauvignon Blanc because of the salad they served with it.”

“It really helped with the saltiness and gave it better ground to even itself out,” said second-year business administration student Kally Greenaway.

But the event contributed more than just general food and wine knowledge.

All of the proceeds will be given to United Way Ottawa where school readiness and social recreation are the main strategies in helping youth succeed.

According to the United Way, up to 40 per cent of children in some Ottawa neighbourhoods start school without any of the basic skills they need to succeed. By 2015, that number is estimated to drop by 20 per cent.

“Being an educational institution, we really want to help foster learning,” said Martin.

“The United Way helps to give children educational opportunities and achieve their highest potential.”

Second-year public relations students Emma Lalonde and Emily Arsenault participated in the beer-tasting event last year and wanted to try a new event this fall.

“I’m really happy to know that all of the proceeds are going to the United Way,” said Lalonde.

“I’m glad we can help out in a meaningful way,” said early childhood education student Anna Cheung.

The event raised $1,000 for the United Way campaign, which aims to officially kick-off Oct. 18.

Martin described the event as a success and is looking forward to coordinating other events this school year.