The name “Erindale” has a long and storied history on this campus, starting in 1967 when Erindale College opened as U of T’s western arts and science campus. And even though the campus officially changed its name to U of T Mississauga in 2002, the original name still lives on in a busy student residence and thriving theatre.
The legacy of the Erindale name certainly isn’t lost on one of this campus’ alumni, who serves as the community relations coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Peel. “People ask me about the name all the time,” says the former Erin Osselton. “In a way, it’s kind of a great icebreaker when I’m speaking at a public event.”
Osselton, it turns out, now has more in common with the campus than her alumni affiliation – as the married Erin Dale, she shares its former name.
Her parents, she notes, may have played an unwitting role in her destiny. When their daughter was born, they jokingly wondered about the odds of her marrying someone whose last name was Dale, matching that of Mississauga’s Erindale College?
It would seem that they tempted fate. In high school, Osselton met Sean Dale, and they became inseparable. She enrolled at U of T Mississauga in 2002, where she lived in Roy Ivor Hall and studied English and professional writing. After graduation, Erin and Sean decided to marry. And not surprisingly, her parents’ crib-side conversation came up in the wedding speeches on the day she officially became Erin Dale.
Given the shared moniker, it seems entirely appropriate that Dale is still connected to campus. Working with the Office of Student Affairs, she liaises with the UTM Group Mentoring Program. Students volunteer with local children in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program, enhancing their self-esteem by acting as role models and friends. Last year, the charity honoured U of T Mississauga as Community Partner of the Year.
And as for sharing her name with her alma mater, Dale has no doubts: “I’m very proud of my name—and I’m proud that I went to UTM.”