Yesterday, June 23, Nova Scotia marked two weeks since its last confirmed case of COVID-19. “We have gone two weeks without a new case of COVID-19 and that is because of the efforts of Nova Scotians,” says Premier Stephen McNeil in a recent press release. “But we can’t get complacent. Please continue to follow the public health measures and stay safe.” 

Even as the province emerges from lockdown, the pandemic continues to surge worldwide, with this week seeing record growth in cases. On Sunday alone, the World Health Organization tallied 183,020 new cases around the globe, including 116,000 in North and South America.

School’s in at St. FX
While just about every other post-secondary school in the province plan to do most of their teaching online this fall, officials at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish still intend to have most classes in person. “It will take the effort of the entire community to ensure our collective health and safety,” says interim president Kevin Wamsley. “We are confident we can create a safe environment.”

He says the university has been working with government and public-health officials to develop screening, cleaning, and distancing plans, but doesn’t say when they’ll share details. Drake Lowthers has the story in The Reporter.

Patience pays off
For some 14 years, Patience Mpenzi lived in an African refugee camp. Ten months ago, she arrived in New Glasgow with her parents and four siblings. Since then, she’s thrown herself into her studies. She plans to study nursing at Nova Scotia Community College and now she has help with that goal. Recently, she won a $1,000 award from Lucrative Apparel, a program started by owner Travis Francis to help Black and First Nations students from his home community.

Francis explains that he feels obligated to use his clothing business as a force for change. Mpenzi appreciates the support. “Although I didn’t meet the person who made this possible, may God bless him,” she says. Jackie Jardine has more in The Pictou Advocate.

Solitha Shortte

Changing the face of fashion
As a 15-year-old, Solitha Shortte began fashion modelling in her native Saint Vincent and Grenadines as a hobby. After attending university in Halifax, she tried to turn it into a career, but rarely got meaningful work. “My agent said… the industry in this city is racist, so you’ll never get picked,” she recalls.

Discouraged, she left Halifax to make inroads in the industry. And now she’s back, operating her own management company and determined to make the path easier for other people of colour. “So they have a platform for representation, and in doing that it represents the community,” she says, “that’s why I created Soli productions. It adds a level of reality to a world that has always been so exclusive to what we look like.” She tells Gabbie Douglas about her journey in this new Halifax Magazine feature.

The future of fishing
Despite a pandemic slowdown in business, Dartmouth’s Aleksandr Stabenow sees a lot of promise in fisheries and aquaculture technology. His company, Sedna Technologies, provides supply-chain software for clients around the world. “We’re putting a lot of focus into Europe right now,” he says. “There are huge applications for the aquaculture industry there.”

He believes the company can help local fish harvesters make more profit. “There are lots of examples where harvesters have lost a good portion of their shipment because something went wrong [in the supply chain] and they weren’t notified,” he says. Gayle Wilson reports for LighthouseNow.

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