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  • 📱 Ontario Tech Welcomes New Dean, 🚔 Oshawa's Mushroom Raid Saga Continues, and 🥇 Durham Lords' Triumph!

📱 Ontario Tech Welcomes New Dean, 🚔 Oshawa's Mushroom Raid Saga Continues, and 🥇 Durham Lords' Triumph!

Issue #022

Issue #022 - December 22, 2023

** Note: Sometimes Gmail clips the end of the newsletter. You can read the whole newsletter online…

In this issue of Whitby Thrive…

☀️ Today’s Weather in Whitby 

 🚗 New Initiative to Combat $1.2 Billion Auto Theft Crisis in Canada

 📱 Dr. Carolyn McGregor Takes Helm as New Dean of FBIT at Ontario Tech University

 🚨 Urgent Manhunt in Courtice: Police Seek Anthony Oliveira in Critical Injury Case

🚔 Oshawa Police Crackdown: Third Raid on Illegal Mushroom Sales at 'Fun Guyz'

 🎖️ Ontario Tech University Marks 20 Years with Major Achievements and Recognitions

🏆 Whitby Area Trivia

 🔔 Got a Favourite Whitby Business? Nominate Them for a Feature in Our Community Newsletter!

 🥇 Record-Breaking Season for Durham Lords Under New Coaches

 📅 Whitby Events

New Initiative to Combat $1.2 Billion Auto Theft Crisis in Canada

he Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) has teamed up with Équité Association, a not-for-profit focused on combating insurance crime, to launch Project Attire, an initiative targeting auto thefts in the Region of Durham. This collaboration, bolstered by a significant $900,000 investment from the Ontario government, aims to drastically reduce insurance fraud and vehicle theft through sophisticated data analysis, vehicle identification, and coordinated investigations.

Équité Association emphasizes the importance of a multi-layered approach to prevent auto theft, suggesting measures such as keeping doors locked, installing anti-theft devices, vehicle immobilizers, and investing in tracking systems.

The DRPS is contributing to this joint effort by establishing a new Auto Theft Unit dedicated to handling auto theft cases and vehicle recovery. This initiative is crucial as stolen vehicles severely impact residents, affecting their daily routines and livelihoods.

Bryan Gast from Équité Association remarks on the severity of auto theft in Canada, highlighting the financial losses amounting to over $1.2 billion nationally and $700 million in Ontario alone. He stresses the need for collaboration between public and private sectors to tackle this issue effectively.

Deputy Chief Dean Bertrim of the DRPS notes the alarming rate of vehicle theft in Durham Region, with over 1500 cases this year. Project Attire represents a proactive approach to safeguarding community vehicles and enhancing overall safety.

The public is encouraged to provide anonymous information to Durham Regional Crime Stoppers, with potential rewards for valuable tips. Read more.

Dr. Carolyn McGregor Takes Helm as New Dean of FBIT at Ontario Tech University

Ontario Tech University proudly announces Dr. Carolyn McGregor AM as the new Dean of the Faculty of Business and Information Technology (FBIT), effective January 1, 2024. A prominent figure in the field of Big Data analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), and edge computing, Dr. McGregor joined Ontario Tech in 2007 as the Canada Research Chair (Health Informatics).

Her tenure at Ontario Tech has been marked by significant achievements, including her role as the Research Chair in AI for Health and Wellness and the founding co-Director of the Joint Research Centre in AI for Health and Wellness in collaboration with the University of Technology Sydney, Australia.

Dr. McGregor's administrative contributions within FBIT have been substantial, serving as Interim Dean since July 2023 and previously as Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies. Her research, especially in critical care, astronaut health, and resilience training, has gained international recognition through the Artemis and Athena AI platforms, receiving extensive media coverage and documentary profiling.

With over 200 refereed publications, more than $15 million in research funding, and three patents, her work has had a significant impact. Notable projects include the deployment of the Artemis platform in Ontario hospitals, leading research for the Canadian Department of National Defence, and her involvement in the Axiom Ax-1 astronaut mission and the Space Health study on the International Space Station.

Her international recognition includes being named to the Order of Australia (AM) in 2014 and featuring in the 150 Stories series for Ontario’s 150th anniversary in 2017. Additionally, she was acknowledged as one of Digital Health Canada’s Women Leaders in Digital Health in 2018.

Beyond her academic achievements, Dr. McGregor has extensive business experience, having developed business analytics strategies for major corporations in Australia. Her vision to apply her expertise in AI and analytics to healthcare reflects her commitment to improving health outcomes. Read more.

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Urgent Manhunt in Courtice: Police Seek Anthony Oliveira in Critical Injury Case

Photo credit: https://twitter.com/DRPS

Following a critical incident in Courtice, emergency responders rushed to a scene on Cousins Street after a report of a severely injured man. The authorities are now actively searching for a suspect named Anthony Oliveira, believed to be driving a Grey Chevrolet Uplander. The public is urged to remain vigilant and contact 911 immediately if they spot Oliveira or the vehicle in question. Read more.

Oshawa Police Crackdown: Third Raid on Illegal Mushroom Sales at 'Fun Guyz'

Fly Agaric

In a recent operation, Oshawa police conducted their third search warrant on a business suspected of illegal drug sales. The raid took place at 'Fun Guyz,' a business located at 9 Simcoe Street South, known for selling psilocybin, commonly known as magic mushrooms. During the operation, a female employee was arrested without any complications. The authorities confiscated a significant amount of narcotics and Canadian currency.

Claudia Rodriguez, a 51-year-old from Whitby, faces charges including possession of a controlled drug or substance for the purpose of trafficking, and possession of proceeds obtained by crime under $5000. She has since been released on an Undertaking.

The police are encouraging anyone with additional information regarding these incidents to contact the Central East Division Community Response Team. Furthermore, anonymous tips can be directed to Durham Regional Crime Stoppers, where informants may qualify for a cash reward of up to $2,000. Read more.

Ontario Tech University Marks 20 Years with Major Achievements and Recognitions

Ontario Tech University, celebrating its 20th anniversary, has had an outstanding year marked by numerous achievements, signifying its growth as a premier education institution. Key highlights from 2023 include:

  • 20th Anniversary Celebration: The year-long celebration started with a barbecue, featuring various events to commemorate the university's journey.

  • Canadian Research University of the Year: Ontario Tech was recognized for its research excellence and growth in industry-sponsored research income.

  • High Ranking Among Young Universities: The university ranked second in Canada's young universities, according to Times Higher Education.

  • Improvement in Maclean’s Rankings: It moved up to No. 8 nationally in the ‘overall/combined’ category in Maclean’s university rankings.

  • Project Arrow Connection: Ontario Tech played a key role in this all-Canadian zero-emission vehicle project.

  • Growth in Applications: Leading Ontario universities in year-over-year application growth for Fall enrollment.

  • Increased High School Graduate Enrollments: The university saw a record number of confirmations from Ontario high school applicants.

  • Introduction of Fall Convocation: This new tradition celebrates Summer-semester graduates within the same calendar year.

  • Moose Hide Campaign Ambassador Campus: Recognizing Ontario Tech's commitment to creating a safer society.

  • Men’s Soccer Team Success: Achieved a Top-10 national ranking and advanced to the provincial semi-finals.

  • Naming of Mitch and Leslie Frazer Faculty of Education: Following a significant donation from the Frazer family.

  • Fair Trade Campus Designation: Awarded by Fairtrade Canada for sustainable practices.

  • Subcritical Assembly Project: Enhancing nuclear laboratory facilities for student learning.

  • Engineering Outreach Funding: Received a grant to support Indigenous and Black youth in STEM education.

  • Partnership with Kinectrics Inc.: To advance nuclear research and innovation.

  • Healthy Transportation Strategies: Research on active transportation in urban spaces.

  • Global Partnerships Expansion: With Japanese, Thai, and Egyptian institutions.

  • AI Chatbots Research: Symposium on AI implications in education and workplaces.

  • CNIB Partnership for AI Accessibility: Developing XAI accessibility standards.

  • Brilliant Farm Project: Securing a grant to innovate in controlled environment agriculture for winter food production.

    Read more.

Whitby Area Trivia

Trivia GIF by Quiz Meisters

What unique historical significance does Whitby, Ontario hold?

  • a) It was the first town in Canada to establish a public library.

  • b) It was named after a seaport town in Yorkshire, England and is also home to Trafalgar Castle School, a notable architectural landmark.

  • c) It was the birthplace of the first Canadian Prime Minister.

  • d) It served as the location for a secret World War II spy training facility known as Camp X.

Answer posted below

We are seeking Amazing Stories

About our Local Businesses!

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Help us celebrate our Community’s Achievements!

Got a Favourite Whitby Business? Nominate Them to be Featured in Whitby Thrive!

Whitby Thrive, your local community newsletter, is on the lookout for remarkable businesses to feature in our upcoming editions! We're calling on our readers to help us in this endeavour. If you know a local business in Whitby that deserves some recognition, we would love to hear from you. Nominate your favourite local business by sending us an email. This is a fantastic opportunity to shine a light on those businesses that make our community special. Don't miss the chance to help a local business get the spotlight it deserves!

Record-Breaking Season for Durham Lords Under New Coaches

Durham College Athletics has witnessed a remarkable season with the addition of two new coaches: Scott Cawker for men's baseball and Bruce Cullen for women's soccer. Both have led their teams to podium finishes in their debut seasons, marking a significant achievement for the college's sports programs.

Scott Cawker, stepping in as the third head coach in the over three-decade history of the collegiate baseball program, brought extensive experience and a strong network within Ontario's baseball community. The Lords baseball team showcased their prowess early on with impressive exhibition game performances against university teams and continued their dominance in the regular OCAA season, achieving a record-breaking 86 runs in just six games.

The team's success was highlighted by their exceptional performance against the defending champions, St. Clair Saints, and a significant victory over the Humber Hawks. Finishing the season with a stellar 15-3 record, the Lords secured their first OCAA medal since 2019 and their fourth overall, alongside breaking several records, including most hits in a single season.

On the soccer field, Bruce Cullen, a former assistant coach and Durham College's male athlete of the year in 2018, was appointed as the seventh coach for the women's soccer program. Under his guidance, the women's team had a strong preseason, followed by a remarkable regular season, scoring 60 goals and conceding only seven in 10 games.

The Lords' journey to success included an 8-1-1 record and a triumphant qualifying match against St. Lawrence Surge. Despite a narrow semifinal loss to the undefeated Humber Hawks, the team clinched a bronze medal, their first OCAA medal since 2018 and the 12th overall in the program's history.

Both Cawker and Cullen are committed to further developing their respective teams, with the women's soccer team eagerly anticipating the OCAA Indoor Soccer regionals in February. Read more.

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Correct Answer: b) It was named after a seaport town in Yorkshire, England and is also home to Trafalgar Castle School, a notable architectural landmark.

Whitby was named after a seaport town in Yorkshire, England and is also home to Trafalgar Castle School, a notable architectural landmark