Press release

Calgary students get Olympic mentors for the school year

Six classrooms paired with two Olympians with the support of Shaw Communications

October 20, 2016

Calgary, AB (October 20, 2016) – Six classrooms in Calgary are particularly excited about school this year—they will be mentored by two Calgary-born Olympians, thanks to the commitment of Classroom Champions’ longstanding community partner Shaw Communications Inc.

Four classrooms in Keeler Elementary have been paired with Rio Olympian and Track Cyclist Monique Sullivan, and two classrooms in Langevin Science School have been paired with National Champion Skeleton Racer Barrett Martineau. This special virtual mentorship program allows the athletes to spend the full school year giving video lessons and Skype chatting with participating students.

“Having an Olympian or Paralympian speak to a classroom can motivate and inspire kids in unique ways,” said Chethan Lakshman, Vice President, Communications and Public Relations, Shaw Communications. “Being able to bring these athletes and role models to classrooms in Calgary provides students with examples of what can be achieved with hard work and determination.”

Classroom Champions connects Olympians and Paralympians with local schools across North America for ongoing virtual mentorship. Using video lessons and live video chats, students are motivated to recognize their potential, set goals and dream big. It’s the first and only in-school program that brings Olympians and Paralympians into the classroom to provide ongoing mentorship. As part of the program, participating classrooms are equipped with the latest technology tools - tablets, televisions, laptops – to help teachers incorporate digital literacy into their curriculum.

“The commitment Shaw has shown to Calgary’s students and teachers is wonderful,” said Steve Mesler, Olympic and World Champion, and President and CEO of Classroom Champions. “Having a Rio Olympian as well as a young Olympic hopeful giving different perspectives on goal setting, fair play, and giving back to their communities is something we can all learn valuable lessons from.”

“I am so excited to get started and to meet the students,” says Monique Sullivan. “The reason I joined [Classroom Champions] was to share some of my experience to help them achieve their goals, and have some fun along the way.”

“I’m really excited to continue the program,” says Carole Ware, who is a returning Classroom Champions teacher at Langevin Science School. “It gives the students an excellent mentor to look up to, allows us to look closely at the science behind sports, and gives interesting ways to teach important life skills.”


About Shaw Communications
Shaw is an enhanced connectivity provider. Shaw serves consumers with broadband Internet, WiFi, video, digital phone and, through WIND Mobile, wireless services. Shaw Business Network Services provides business customers with Internet, data, WiFi, telephony, video and fleet tracking services. Shaw Business Infrastructure Services provides enterprises colocation, cloud and managed services through ViaWest. Shaw is traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges and is included in the S&P/TSX 60 Index (Symbol: TSX - SJR.B, NYSE - SJR). For more information, please visit

About Classroom Champions
Classroom Champions is a non-profit organization founded by 2010 Olympic bobsled gold-medalist Steve Mesler and Leigh Mesler Parise, PhD, and is the first and only in-school program to connect Olympic and Paralympic athletes with K-8 students in underserved schools on an ongoing basis. Leveraging the latest technology and donating it to participating schools, Classroom Champions’ Athlete Mentors partner with classrooms for the full school year, establishing a relationship that allows them to help students recognize their potential, set goals, and dream big. Current and past Athlete Mentors include Haley Wickenheiser, Lucas Makowsky, Sam Edney, and Brittany Schussler among many more.

Classroom Champions has grown from its U.S. beginnings to reaching tens of thousands of students in schools and classrooms in the U.S.A., Canada and Costa Rica. Classroom Champions is the only North American organization to be awarded the 2012 World Fair Play Diploma for Promotion of Fair Play by the International Fair Play Committee, established by UNESCO. For more information on the program and participating Athlete Mentors, as well as a view of Classroom Champions at work in the schools, please visit or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google-Plus.

For more information, please contact:
Rhiannon MacDonnell