Lakehead University Alumni Magazine

Great Grads

Published April 14, 2011

Elizabeth Buset - Artist

Elizabeth Buset

Seven large-scale paintings like these two by Elizabeth Buset (HBFA’09) were on display in Thunder Bay as part of Research & Innovation Week 2011. Buset is the recipient of the Northern Arts Grant from the Ontario Arts Council and the Ambassadorial Scholarship from the Rotary Foundation, an international humanitarian scholarship that will fund her master’s degree studies. She says that her work “engages viewers both visually and intellectually by re-contextualizing mundane objects, creating an alternative lexicon in which to articulate contemporary issues.”  Buset’s first solo exhibition was held in Thunder Bay last summer at Definitely Superior Art Gallery. Her most recent exhibition, entitled Icons of Everyday Life, was sponsored by Lakehead’s Advanced Institute for Globalization & Culture (aig+c).

Merit, oil on canvas, 130 x 140 cm, 2011

Kevin Page - Parliamentary Budget Officer

Kevin Page

During a public lecture at Lakehead’s Thunder Bay campus last fall, Kevin Page recalled how important Lakehead was in his development as an economist. “Lakehead was the right place at the right time for me,” he said of his time studying with professors Rick Anderson, Norm Bonsor, Tom Harris, and the late Chris Jecchinis. “My fellow students were amazing. We had great discussions back in the days when inflation was skyrocketing. It was a great learning environment.”

Page studied at Simon Fraser University and graduated from Lakehead in 1980 with an HBA majoring in Economics before completing a master’s degree in Economics at Queen’s University. He has 27 years of experience in the federal public service and was appointed to the position of Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in March 2008.

The mandate of the PBO is to provide independent analysis to Parliament on trends in the Canadian economy and the state of the nation’s finances.  Upon request from a committee or parliamentarian, the PBO will estimate the financial cost of any proposal for matters over which Parliament has jurisdiction.

“Today is a wonderful time to be studying economics,” he told the students in the audience. “Having experienced (in 2008) the most serious  economic crisis since the great Depression, we are now entering a period where ideas matter, where democracy and government transparency are at stake, and where economic systems, theories, and institutions all need to change.

I encourage all Lakehead students to play a leadership role in resolving some of the political and economic challenges we face in Canada and abroad.”  

When asked about the challenge of taking on the job of being Canada’s first-ever Parliamentary Budget Officer, Kevin answered with a quote he attributed to author Ray Bradbury: “Sometimes you just have to jump off the cliff and grow wings on the way down.”

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