WATERLOO, Ont. (March 29, 2018) – Emily Ferguson
, a third year defender on the women’s lacrosse team, was named the 2018 Outstanding Women of Laurier award recipient on Thursday evening at the 13th annual Outstanding Women of Laurier dinner at Bingemans Conference Centre.
Ferguson, a native of Waterloo, Ont., was one of three nominees for this year’s award which included Laurier Brantford cross country runner Jessa Braun
of Kitchener, Ont., and women’s curler Bridget Ribau
of Oakville, Ont.
“Emily is a very worthy recipient of this award as she represents everything this honour encapsulates,” said Peter Baxter
, Laurier’s director of athletics and recreation. “She is an outstanding athlete who has excelled on the field for our women's lacrosse team for the last three years and is also an exceptional student in the classroom. On top of all that, she finds time in her schedule to give back to her various communities in many different fashions.”
Ferguson, a third year kinesiology and physical education major, is the first women’s lacrosse player to earn the award.
"It's just a cherry on top. Being nominated in of itself was fantastic and being named to the roster of the Outstanding Women of Laurier it's amazing. I'm still kind of in shock," said Ferguson on receiving the honour.
"It's amazing," added Ferguson when asked what it meant to her to win the same award as 2015-16 recipient Jacky Normandeau. "She was my role model from first year. She was my athlete academic coach in study hall and then being able to follow in her footsteps in being named of the athlete academic coaches was outstanding. And now earning this award is incredible."
Serving as captain for the women’s lacrosse team, Ferguson has been a key member of the purple and gold since joining the squad back in 2015. In her first year with the team, she was named the lacrosse Rookie of the Year and an OUA Academic Achievement Award recipient. She has built on that success each season, capping the 2017 campaign by being named an OUA First Team All-Star. Her on-field play has been crucial to her team’s success the last three years as the Hawks have played in the OUA Bronze Medal game the last three years, capturing a medal in 2016.
Off the field, Ferguson has dedicated her time as a coach in both field lacrosse and ringette while starting up a ringette goaltending clinic, PUSH Goaltending, which operates in the Waterloo Region. She has also taken on the task of mentoring her peers at Laurier, serving as an Athlete Academic Coach with the Athlete Academic Success Program and also serving as a peer tutor with the Accessible Learning Centre.
Also announcedon Thursday evening was the recipient of the Dolores “Mitzi” Michael Women Leaders Scholarship, an award established in memory of Dolores “Mitzi” Michael who served on staff in the department of athletics and recreation between 1972 and 1993. The award is given to one female student who has held a leadership position in the department and has demonstrated leadership qualities that focus on team building and enhancing the student experience.
This year’s recipient is Melissa Pare
who has positively impacted the Laurier Athletics and Recreation Department in many areas over the past four years. Melissa is the current Coordinator of the I Move My Mood program, which helps students deal with stress and anxiety through physical activity. She is President of the Laurier Letterman Club, a member of the Women's Basketball team for Laurier Athletics and has been the recipient of several department awards for her contributions.
Laurier launched the Outstanding Women of Laurier award in 2006 to recognize female students who combine athletic and academic achievement with an active commitment to the community through volunteerism.
The event included an inspirational keynote address from Georgia Simmerling, a multisport Olympian who became the first Canadian athlete to compete in a different sport in three separate Olympic Games, and was hosted by Susan Cook-Scheerer, former Host and Associate Producer of daytime on Rogers TV.
This year’s event raised close to $30,000 to help support women’s athletic initiatives, scholarships and the mentoring program at Laurier.
The event was made possible by leadership sponsors RBC Royal Bank, Miller Thomson LLP, Enterprise, the Laurier Alumni Association and Unitron. Contributing sponsors included the City of Kitchener, City of Waterloo, Ernst & Young LLP, Great-Canadian Holidays, Coaches and Fleet Services, Izzio Financial Solutions, Mad Hatter Technology, TD Bank Group, The Aud and Arenas, Toyota Manufacturing, as well as a number of Wilfrid Laurier University departments. In-kind sponsors included Brentwood Livery, Rogers Kitchener Radio Group and Sound Events. Outstanding Women of Laurier Award recipients
2017-18 - Emily Ferguson
2016-17 - Julie Karn
2015-16 - Jacky Normandeau (Soccer/Hockey)
2014-15 - Lee Anna Osei (Basketball)
2013-14 - Bree Chaput (Basketball)
2012-13 - Fiona Lester (Hockey)
2011-12 - Laura Crocker (Curling)
2010-11 - Brittany Shaw (Swimming)
2009-10 - Liz Knox (Hockey)
2008-09 - Hollie Nicol (Curling)
2007-08 - Lauren Meschino (Hockey)
2006-07 - Jillian Ritsma (Basketball)
2005-06 - Fiona Aiston (Hockey)