Below is an excerpt from author Orland French’s book, PIONEERING: A History of Loyalist College (1992). While some references are no longer current, the publication provides a rich report on Loyalist’s history, which helps to contextualize its milestones. To read more from Mr. French’s book, please click here.
You can’t tell ‘em by their sou’westers, but there’s always a large crew of Maritimers running around the halls of Loyalist College.
The Maritime connection was established when young people in the East Coast provinces discovered Loyalist offered Radio and Television programs which were unavailable at home.
At first, the value of a Loyalist education was spread by word of mouth. But when the College’s Recruiting Officer detected a strong Maritime interest, they targeted the East Coast as a source for new students. The active recruiting program required regular treks to “lobsterland”.
Loyalist Coordinators of School Liaison make several trips a year to the Maritimes and have found prospective students in Moncton, St. John, N.B., Cape Breton, the Miramichi region of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and, most recently, the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia.
At one time Maritimers made up almost 10 percent of Loyalist’s student population. In 1992, about five percent were from the East Coast.
Maritimers like Loyalist because it’s not too big, it’s in Ontario, and it’s near Toronto. Maritimers admit some are afraid to go to school in Toronto, but like to get there once in a while.
Radio, Television and Broadcast Journalism are the most popular programs and continue to attract Maritimers. Most enrolled in those fields return home to jobs.