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Alumni Matters - May 2020

Life after COVID-19: How do we prepare our cities for the next pandemic?
Amid a global pandemic, urban areas are being viewed through a lens that focuses sharply on COVID-19 and questions how prepared cities are to deal with widespread health emergencies—like is it even possible to build a pandemic-ready city? Roger Keil, professor in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University, says yes, it is possible. The answer, however, isn’t likely what you’d expect. 

CTV’s The Social co-host and author Cynthia Loyst (BFA ’98) on helping women find their joy

As co-host on CTV’s The Social, Cynthia Loyst (BFA ’98) is the show’s resident sex and relationships expert. Here, she talks about how she started her career at York, and why she launched Find Your Pleasure, an online destination to inspire people to find things in their lives that bring passion. Her new book, Find Your Pleasure: The Art of Living a More Joyful Life, was released earlier this year.

COVID-19 burnout: Can-do attitude gives way to anxiety, despair for many 
In this new interview with the Winnipeg Free Press, psychology professor Gordon Flett explains why there may be a rise in stress-related illnesses as a result of prolonged social isolation. "I think this is going to have a much stronger toll and impact on people than we even realize," he said.

Running while empty: How learning continues off-campus 
Though campus remains quieter than usual since York cancelled all face-to-face instruction on March 16, off-campus activity continues to flourish, thanks to bold new initiatives aimed at keeping the University proactive and success-oriented during a time of crisis.

Grocery retail veteran Mary Dalimonte (BA ’79) on the future of the food industry 
Grocery shopping will never be the same, says Mary Dalimonte (BA ’79), an industry veteran with over 40 years of experience in grocery retail in Canada. “This is going to change the industry,” she says. In this new profile, Dalimonte speaks about the impact of COVID-19 on the grocery retail industry, and how it was prepared for this crisis.

Alumnus David Marrello (BBA ’15) co-founded a new platform to solve tech issues and keep families and friends connected 
When many of us across the country were asked to stay home to flatten the curve of COVID-19, David Marrello (BBA ’15) realized that for some folks, particularly older individuals, connecting to their families and friends via technology was proving to be a daunting task. So David and his brother Daniel co-founded TechServeTO, a platform that connects people willing to volunteer their time with people seeking help with tech issues.
York announces funding for new COVID-19 research projects 
The University has awarded $300,000 in research grants to advance 20 new research projects dedicated to Canada’s fight against COVID-19 and its impacts. York recently announced a $250,000 research fund and call for proposals to support immediate term COVID-19 research projects. Due to the impressive response, the University increased the fund by $50,000 to support the further development of additional high-potential projects. 
Did you miss #GivingTuesday?
It’s not too late to make a difference! Your support has never been more critical to help ensure more students stay in school. By donating to York’s Emergency COVID-19 Student Relief Fund, you will be helping thousands of York students who are struggling with job losses and an uncertain future that could put their education at risk.
Catch up on our York Circle @ Home Lecture Series!
On Saturday, May 2 we hosted the first York Circle @ Home Lecture Series. Participants tuned in on Zoom and our Facebook page to hear from some of York's leading faculty members on a wide range of interesting and timely topics that spoke to some of the ongoing research at the University. Webinars were held throughout the day, all hosted by Julie Lafford, Executive Director of Alumni Engagement. You can view these engaging lectures on our YouTube channel.