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Mixing athletics and academics

The Patricia Dudar Athletic Award helps student athletes reach new heights
February 7, 2017

Three-time Concordia graduate Patricia Dudar, BSc 68, BEd 69, MSc 77, firmly believes that the key to success lies in combining sports with studies.

Patricia Dudar Patricia Dudar established the Patricia Dudar Athletic Award in 2008 to help student athletes lessen their financial load and focus on their abilities

It’s a convincing argument, especially coming from someone who in April 2016 alone completed two events — the iconic Boston Marathon and a four-mile run through New York’s Central Park to raise money to fight lung cancer — while simultaneously wrapping up an online course.

A science teacher by training, Dudar taught a wide range of subjects during her extensive career as an educator at various high schools in the Montreal area.

Now retired, she credits taking athletic and recreational courses with helping her avoid the burnout that plagues the notoriously stressful teaching profession. “It was a great way to relieve tension,” she says. Those brief moments of physical activity helped re-energize her body and centre her mind to take on the day’s challenges.

Dudar first discovered this winning combination of academics and athletics when she was a student herself.

After studying pre-med at Loyola College, one of Concordia’s founding institutions, she went on to earn a Master’s of Science degree at Concordia. “I enjoyed the topics enormously,” she says. 

While completing her MSc at the university, Dudar signed on for fitness classes — ranging from karate to ballet to fencing — in the pockets of free time between the end of her full-time workday and the start of her evening classes downtown.

“I loved taking those fitness courses,” she says. “It was how I relieved stress before class, how I made the mental transition from work to school. Athletics are a fabulous way to relax and refocus on a new subject.”

With those fond memories in mind, Dudar decided to give back to her alma mater in 2008, establishing the Patricia Dudar Athletic Award. The award gives Concordia students the opportunity and freedom to pursue their own athletic and academic dreams by lessening their financial stresses.

Dudar felt it important to shape her donation with her own Concordia experience in mind.

“You have to look back and think: What helped me succeed as a student?” she says. “You have to fund the things that helped you to flourish.”


Your generosity in action
Read more inspiring stories like this one in Momentum, Concordia's Donor and Student Awards newsletter.

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