September 14, 2016

Remembering Jenni Rempel

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By Andrea Williamson

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Jenni Rempel, recent graduate from the School of Interactive Arts and Technology program. Jenni was an amazing student, volunteer and friend to many. She had a wonderful personality - always eager to help, make people feel welcome and comfortable, and challenge their thinking. She worked on a number of projects at the SFU's Surrey Campus. She was a talented and ambitious young creative. Our thoughts go out to her family, friends, colleagues and mentors.

A few words from those who know her capture the person she was, the energy she brought to the room, and the courage she took in living a life that she could be proud of.

“I knew Jenni as a student, a volunteer and as a teaching assistant. When asked to write a few words about Jenni, I took a moment and went back through the e-mail correspondence I had with her. The person that emerged was detailed, passionate, held strong opinions and worked well as part of a team but was most importantly young, growing and becoming. Jenni volunteered her time, went beyond what was expected of her in any given role and was involved in a number of creative pursuits. She made a mark on our community and I feel lucky to have known her. Jenni will be missed by all those who knew her.” – Susan Clements-Vivian, Senior Lecturer, SIAT

“Jenni showed general creative courage, wasn't afraid of taking risks, and had a clear sense of purpose and vision in her work. She was the kind of student any instructor would want to have in the way she took up the course material and made it her own. In her directed study with me, she made documentary films of musicians' live performances, which I think underscores her general passion for creativity.” – Michael Filimowicz, Senior Lecturer, SIAT

“I had the pleasure of working with Jenni on numerous projects at SFU. She had one of the kindest, most compassionate souls. Her impact at SFU, in theatre and in the community was great and her legacy will live on. God bless her and may she rest in peace.” Lynne Jamieson, Director of Administration, FCAT

“Today I found out that a wonderful friend passed away. Jenni Rempel was more than a classmate, teammate, FroshOne and Orientation leader. We spent a lot of time volunteering at SFU together and she always tried to bring positive energy into the room with her personality and smile. Her dance moves and introduction to laughter yoga was unforgettable. I'll always remember and miss you, Jenni.” – Chi Hsi, SIAT graduate and fellow classmate

“Jenni and I grew up together, we went to the same high school. I will always remember that time when I was living in New York and I saw her amidst a sea of people in Times Square. I tried to get her attention, but couldn’t catch up. 2 years later, I bumped into her again in IAT 110 where she was my peer tutor for the semester. She was one of those people who was super involved and engaged. She was an incredibly inspiring, creative, vibrant, kind individual. I will always remember her and her impact, and will miss bumping into her. RIP Jenni.” Alisha Pillay, Communications Associate, FCAT

On the gofundme page dedicated to help her mother with the costs of her funeral, there are even more words that describe Jenni:

“I never got to know Jenni as well as I wish I had, but she still had a profound impact on me. She was an incredible person and a dear friend, and I miss her.” – Scott Cowan

“I taught Jenni at Matheson and she was a compassionate, hardworking and a bright soul. I am still trying to come to terms with this sad news. Her zest for life and willingness to help others will never be forgotten. RIP Jenni! You will be deeply missed.” - Gurpreet Kaur Bains

You will be missed Jenni. I am hoping that the last comment rings true:

“A part of me will always believe you're out there on a great journey, meeting artists, finding treasure, and saving dragons from castles. I'll always appreciate how much passion and creativity you brought to life. It’s hard for me to say goodbye... In the next adventure we meet.” - G Singh

CLICK TO WATCH SOME OF JENNI'S WORK.