For a university that has been around since 1964, the number of graduates has surpassed a milestone. This past June, Brock University celebrated its 100,000th graduate. Rebecca Alcock walked across the stage like many before her to accept her Bachelor of Arts from the Faculty of Humanities, but while accepting her diploma the gymnasium was treated with music and red confetti.
In honour of the milestone, The Brock Press looks at some key names that have graduated from Brock over the years. In no particular order here is a short list of Brock University graduates:
Note: if we missed someone that deserved to be mentioned, tweet us @TheBrockPress
The last name is familiar to many hockey fans, and that’s because Dennis Hull is the brother of Bobby Hull – one of the NHL’s greatest players. Dennis Hull also played in the NHL racking up 303 goals and 351 assists in 959 games. He played 12 seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks before finishing his career with the Detroit Red Wings in 1977-1978. Prior to his NHL career, Hull played for the St. Catharines Teepees, later known as the Black Hawks.
After his NHL career, Hull studied at Brock, graduating with a degree in History and Physical Education. He went on to becoming a teacher at the local Ridley College as well.
He started a political career on the St. Catharines City Council in 1988, and later was part of the Niagara Regional Council. McMullan, a Brock graduate and born in Hamilton, became the mayor of St. Catharines in 2006 but decided not to run again in 2014.
From the island Bermuda, Jessica Lewis graduated from Brock this past June from Rec and Leisure Studies. Lewis is a two-time Paralympian in Wheelchair Track and won Bermuda their first Parapan Am medal in 2015 in Toronto. She also has a bronze medal at the World Championships in 2015.
Not only was Tonya Verbeek a student at Brock, she was part of the women’s wrestling program from 1999 to 2002. During her time at Brock, she won three CIS (now U Sports) gold medals and helped Brock to a CIS banner in 2000. Verbeek also has her masters from Brock. Her major accomplishments have come at the world stage. Verbeek has two silvers and a bronze at the Pan American Games; a silver at the Commonwealth Games; and a silver and two bronze medals at the World Championships. In 2004, in Athens she earned her first Olympic medal – a silver. She would follow that up in Beijing in 2008 with a bronze and at the 2012 Olympics in London, she won her second silver.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Marc Jordan studied film at Brock – his father was Canadian. Although, film is what Jordan studied, he started off as a guitarist for Bobby Vee. Jordan released his own music and was eventually signed to Warner Bros. Records. He won a Juno Award for Producer of the Year in 1994. Jordan has done some acting, but he is more known for his singing, song writing and producing.
With Corey Wray, Kyle Dubas graduated from Sport Management in 2007. Dubas has been the General Manager for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL and the Toronto Maple Leafs gave him the role to take control of the Toronto Marlies. He was named an Assistant General Manager for the Maple Leafs in 2014 and this past May, he was promoted to General Manager.
His name may not ring a bell, but Denis Dyack was a major contributor and developer for video games that are available for Nintendo 64, Nintendo Gamecube, Sega, Playstation and Xbox. Dyack graduated from Brock with a Bachelor of Physical Education and a H.BSc in Computer Science. He followed that up with a Master of Computer Science from University of Guelph. He became the co-founder and president of Silicon Knights, a video game design company. He directed games like Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem. Dyack was inducted into the Canadian Gaming Hall of Fame in 2011.
A MMA fighter, who competed in the Welterweight division of the UFC, Sean Pierson is a graduate of Brock. Pierson got his UFC debut in 2010 after another fighter was injured and a replacement was needed. After winning his debut match, Pierson lost two straight before finishing his career with a 4-2 record – all wins coming as a unanimous decision. His last fight was in 2013.
YouTube has made a lot of people famous and that includes this Brock graduate. Matthew Santoro earned a Master of Accountancy at Brock, but a lot of his focus has been on YouTube. He made the decision to focus on YouTube after being laid off as an accountant, as mentioned in one of his YouTube vlogs. His channel is most known for top ten lists and 50 amazing facts. Santoro currently has over 6 million subscribers and 1.1 billion video views on YouTube.
A Hamilton native, Rick Campanelli attended Brock and graduated with a degree in Physical Education. Although, his career didn’t follow in the footsteps of what he studied, Campanelli is a well-known TV personality.
He started his career on MuchMusic in 1996. He held positions as a video jockey, co-host of Much on Demand and other roles. After leaving MuchMusic in 2005, Campanelli joined ET Canada. Since he has been the host on multiple radio stations, he was also a game announcer for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats for the 2004-2005 season.
From one Olympian to another, Verbeek was coached by Marty Calder. Calder himself also graduated from Brock in 1992 and wrestled for the men’s team. He won five OUA championships, four CIS championships and was first-team All-Canadian four times. He was also named Brock Male Athlete of the Year three times. Now the head coach for the most successful wrestling program in Canada, Calder was a two-time Olympian in 1992 and 1996.