TRU welcomes students back with 30th annual BBQ

By Adam Donnelly
September 8, 2017 - 5:09pm Updated: September 8, 2017 - 5:41pm

KAMLOOPS — September means it’s back to the books for thousands of post secondary students at Thompson Rivers University - and what better way to celebrate the new school year than with the annual Back to School barbecue. This year marks the 30th edition of the event, meant to give students and staff a chance to celebrate the new school year.

Free lunch! If there’s one thing that brings people together, it’s the promise of food they don’t have to buy or cook themselves. Which is likely one of the reasons the TRU Back to School BBQ is such a popular event.

“Our students are hungry,” TRU VP Advancement Christopher Seguin said with a smile, as he manned the grill at today’s cookout. “It’s a big day for them… between the music and the food, and all these people coming out to help our students, it’s just an amazing afternoon.”

This year marks the 30th annual back to school BBQ at Thompson Rivers University. For TRU Student’s Union Vice-President Internal Janelle Lapointe, this marks her fourth Back to School BBQ.

“My first year I was very, very shy. I didn’t know anyone in the city,” Lapointe explained. “This just became the perfect way for me to get to know what Kamloops was about [and] get to know the services we have at Thompson Rivers University.”

The event is a collaboration between the university administration, and the Thompson Rivers University Students Union.

“Today is TRUSU’s eproject,” Sequin explained. “The arranged [the vendor fair]. All admin does it show up and supplies 7,000 hamburgers and gets to work serving them.”

For the students who come, it’s a great opportunity to learn more about what college life can be like.
“Engaging in clubs, extracurriculars, exchanges, jobs and opportunities,” Sequin said. “If you come [to the BBQ] and you engage, you go far beyond the normal [post-secondary] experience.”

All while ensuring those students are aware of the services and supports that are available to them, should they come to need it throughout the school year.

“The biggest thing is just to make sure students feel welcome and supported as we start the new year,” Lapointe said.

Estimates show close to 300 more students throughout school district this year