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June 06, 2019

Belleville, Ontario, June 6, 2019 – During the first two Loyalist College Convocation ceremonies today, 979 students graduated with 1,049 post-secondary credentials, including Ontario College advanced diplomas, diplomas and certificates. Over the course of ceremonies on June 6 and 7, Loyalist will recognize a total of 2,016 new graduates who have successfully completed their programs of study.

This morning, 464 diplomas and certificates were conferred on 435 graduates in the:
School of Health, Human and Justice Studies (Health Sciences)
School of Media, Business and Access (Business)

This afternoon, 585 diplomas and certificates were conferred on 544 graduates in the:
School of Health, Human and Justice Studies (Human Studies)  
Centre for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning

In addition, 44 students in the Brock-Loyalist Collaborative Bachelor of Science in Nursing program successfully completed years one and two at Loyalist College (2015-17) before attending Brock University for years three and four. They will receive their BScN degree at Brock University. 

Presentation of Honorary Diplomas

Dr. Marlene Brant Castellano was presented with an Honorary Diploma by Bob Forder, Chair of the Loyalist College Board of Governors, in recognition of her outstanding contributions to public service, her influence, commitment and leadership in post-secondary education and to recognize her work to advance the well-being of Indigenous peoples. Dr. Castellano, who delivered the morning Convocation address, served as Professor and Chair of Indigenous Studies at Trent University and Co-Director of Research for the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples.

Mr. Sébastien St-Louis was presented with an Honorary Diploma by Chair Forder in recognition of his wide-ranging business experience, leadership abilities, financial acumen and operational expertise that support the Canadian economy. Mr. St-Louis, who delivered the afternoon Convocation address, is the CEO and co-founder of HEXO Corp, an award-winning consumer packaged goods cannabis company that creates and distributes products to serve the global cannabis market.

Presentation of Prestigious Awards

Kathleen Maitland of Belleville received the Governor General’s Award, presented to the graduating student with the highest cumulative average in a two- or three-year College program. She graduated with an average of 97.09 percent from the three-year Child & Youth Care Ontario College advanced diploma program. The Governor General’s Academic Medal was first awarded in 1873 by the Earl of Dufferin, and has since become one of the most prestigious Canadian educational awards.


Jillian Hoftyzer, Public Relations – Event Management, 2019; Fitness & Health Promotion, 2016; and Recreation & Leisure Services, 2015

Scott Rook, Public Relations – Event Management, 2019, and Television & New Media Production, 2018


“This is an important day and we are all delighted to share this celebration with you. Convocation is an occasion when the entire College community, family, friends and supporters come together to honour you, our graduates, and your accomplishments.” – Bob Forder, Chair of the Loyalist College Board of Governors

“Graduates, did you know that Loyalist College boasts the highest graduate employment rate six months after graduation at 90.8 percent? That’s the highest amongst Ontario colleges. Our employer satisfaction rate is 96.5 percent so rest assured you’re entering a labour market with a high degree of satisfaction from our employers.” – Dr. Ann Marie Vaughan, President & CEO, Loyalist College

“We are the beneficiaries of the wisdom refined by our ancestors over seven generations past. We have the responsibility to receive that knowledge and adopt, adapt and improve it in our own context. And by our decisions and actions we shape the world that our children seven generations hence will inherit. We stand at the fulcrum of history and we have the power to maintain or disrupt the balance. Who we are and what we do makes a difference that we can’t begin to measure.” – Guest speaker Dr. Marlene Brant Castellano

“You’ll know yourself and your talents. You’ll pick the right opportunity for you. And when you do make that choice, you’ll put everything on the line to make the most of it. You will work hard. You will work smart. You’ll create your own luck. The more you do this, the more the path to the top of your game will open up to you.” – Guest speaker Mr. Sébastien St-Louis, CEO and co-founder of HEXO Corp

“This day is a day of reflection. To recognize everything that you, as an individual, have accomplished. We should all be proud of how far we have come and what we were able to do during our time here. Loyalist is a place that helped shape us and prepare us to go out into the world and succeed.” – Valedictorian Jillian Hoftyzer

“I’m sure you can all remember your first day of College. Either having some athletes you’ve never met run a mini fridge up to your dorm room, or arriving an hour early for your first class and struggling to find a parking spot. But most of all, you were excited to start what would be the beginning of a future career and an unforgettable journey.” – Valedictorian Scott Rook

About Loyalist College
Loyalist is Ontario’s Destination College, empowering students, faculty, staff, and partners through experiential, industry cluster-based education, training and applied research programs. The College provides job-ready graduates for, and knowledge transfer to, industry and the community. When it comes to Ontario college graduates getting jobs, Loyalist is the top College in the province, according to KPI results, released November 2018. Of 2016-17 Loyalist graduates, 90.8 percent were employed within six months after graduation. Located on more than 200 acres in the beautiful Bay of Quinte region, the College is perfectly positioned between Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. Loyalist offers more than 70 full-time diploma, certificate and apprenticeship programs in biosciences, building sciences, business, community service, health and wellness, media studies, public safety, and skilled trades. Continuing education options are available through; including hundreds of online, distance and in-class courses; and through the College’s 100+ university transfer agreements. Loyalist is a key driver of social and economic health in eastern Ontario. It contributes 5.8 percent of the Gross Regional Product, representing $465 million annually to the regional economy – based on an October 2018 report by Emsi. For more information on Loyalist’s Belleville and Bancroft campuses and Port Hope satellite location, visit

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Contact: Kerry Lorimer, Director, Marketing, Communications and Recruitment
Loyalist College,, 613-969-1913, ext. 2536