Pictured above (L-R): Ian Kurtz, Angela Dufour, Adele LeBlanc, Carolyn Nobes and Shannon Kehoe

What does the Mount and the 2010 Olympics have in common? The pursuit of excellence, a celebration of cultures, visionary goals, a desire to inspire others, and dedicated people. Five of these dedicated people are Ian Kurtz, Angela Dufour, Adele LeBlanc, Carolyn Nobes and Shannon Kehoe; all Mount graduates with special Olympic connections.    

Ian Kurtz, a Tourism & Hospitality Management graduate, is helping to build a team of close to 200 people as the Manager of Human Resources for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies in Vancouver. “The discipline, hard work and co-operative education experiences that I gained through my program at the Mount helped instill a strong work ethic in me,” said Ian. 

When the ceremonies are over Ian will be hopping on a plane to an exotic location to get some much deserved rest. When he returns, it’s right back to business as usual. “The Games environment can get into your blood and I may pursue similar opportunities in the future.”

Feeding thousands of athletes is no easy task, but Angela Dufour, one of the Olympic Sports Dieticians, is up for the challenge. She’s equipped with a Nutrition degree and Masters of Education from the Mount, is a Credentialed Food Service Executive, and to top it all off earned an International Olympics Committee Sports Nutrition Diploma. She will be reviewing menus to make sure the athletes are getting proper nutrition and energy, so they can give their best performance. She will also be educating athletes on general nutritional facts and information.

When Angela isn’t busy contributing nutritious and delicious meal ideas for aspiring Olympic athletes, she’s operating her Bedford based business Nutrition in Action. She also works as a Regional (Nutrition) Marketing Manager with Compass Group Canada; food services management. 

Almost nine months ago, Adele LeBlanc was standing on stage in a Mount auditorium receiving her Bachelor of Tourism & Hospitality Management. Now she’s making her mark on the world stage as a Banquet Supervisor with Whistler Cooks Catering, an official catering company for the duration of the 2010 Olympic Games.

“I realize how fortunate I am to have been offered this position and I don’t take it for granted. I’m positive that the thing’s I’ve learned at the Mount, such as how to work with others and how to adapt to new environments while always showing professionalism and maturity, will benefit me in this position.” 

Carolyn Nobes brought a piece of history to Nova Scotia on November 20, 2009 when she ran through Windsor with the Olympic torch.

“It was an extremely moving experience. This was an opportunity of a lifetime for me and the pride of being a Canadian and the humility of being one small link in a mammoth event was extraordinary,” said Carolyn, a former employee of the Mount for nearly 20 years. She has a Masters of Arts in Education with a concentration in Distance Education from the Mount.

Shannon Kehoe, a Bachelor of Public Relations graduate, will be living out one of her dreams for two weeks as a volunteer in the main media centre. Shannon, an Admissions/Liaison Officer at the Mount, has been anticipating this opportunity since the day she found out that Canada won the Olympic bid. “Since that day, I have always said I would work at the event somehow, and I’m thrilled to be realizing my own Olympic dream,” said Shannon. “The energy in these venues is almost indescribable – in the run of a day you can meet a journalist from anywhere around the world or meet a top ranked athlete who just won their event, and by being there you get to share in their experience.”

These Mount graduates are wonderful examples of what hard work, dedication and following your dreams can lead to. All the best to these graduates as they embark on their Olympic journey.