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#CollegesofTrentU: Shining a Spotlight on Champlain College

July 9, 2019

Champlain offers abundance of opportunities for active engagement with global perspective

Jinal Somani and Sean Carlin of Champlain College, Trent University

The collegiate system shapes a huge part of the Trent experience. Within Trent’s five colleges students build community, find meaningful connections with faculty and peers, and create a “home away from home”. As part of the #CollegesofTrentU Series, we chatted with students and alum about their experiences within the colleges and what makes their college community unique. Read on to learn more about “chamily” at Champlain College.

Champlain College, with its iconic Ron Thom architecture, is renowned for its avante garde use of natural materials and traditional elements in modernist form. Inside and out, it is a college that inspires students to discover the world and people around them.

Trent’s colleges can help students stay grounded during their own avante garde moments of experimenting with new ideas and changing perspectives.

“Without the Champlain College community, I would have been at a loss for how to navigate the transition that comes with leaving home for the first time,” says Sean Carlin, a recent Trent graduate and proud Champlainer.

“There was always an upper year student willing to provide me with insight, guidance or just an ear to listen. As an incoming student, it can be daunting to start university life, but the colleges provide a bit of a reprieve from the uncertainty. You realize that you are not alone in the transition. That can inspire you to succeed.”

At the centre of social life
For Mr. Carlin, Champlain was at the centre of his university experience. It has a focus on active engagement, and Mr. Carlin played broomball at the Bon Temps Weekend – Champlain’s winter carnival, and flag football in the Pigbowl – an annual tournament held during Harvest Weekend in November.

He also was involved in student politics, serving in the Champlain College Cabinet for three years (one as its president), and co-chaired the Champlain College Orientation Week.

“If it wasn’t for the amazing leaders during my orientation week that encouraged me to come out of my shell and get involved, I wouldn’t be the person I am today,” he says.

We are ‘Chamily’: Bonds that last
“After choosing Trent, another selection process was choosing a residence, a college,” recalls Champlain student Jinal Somani.

“I wanted to be in a college where I can get a sense of community and family.  Champlain's motto is Continuer Mes Découvertes, which means ‘to continue my discoveries’. This is what I wanted my life motto to be, and I knew I belonged here instantly.  I made my ‘Chamily’ while staying on campus, and after I moved out of residence. I am more than grateful for them.”

An international student from Tanzania, Miss Somani was drawn in by Champlain’s integration of global perspectives into the College’s identity. And also by the gatherings taking place in the Great Hall that built a sense of community.

“My favorite moment was when I first learnt the Champlain cheers,” says Miss Somani.

“It did not matter where one was from or who they were, at that moment it only mattered was that we were all Champlainers.”

Fast Facts about Champlain College:

  • Central hub location that is home to the Campus Store, The Ceilie Pub, Great Hall, Trent International, Alumni House, Seasoned Spoon
  • Home to two living learning communities:
    • Active Engagement: for students passionate about physical activity, exploration and adventure, as well as students looking to get involved socially and politically in their communities
    • Global Living: to challenge assumptions and discover what it means to be a global citizen
  • Has single, double and triple residence room options