Madison Fitzpatrick
The month of November is just around the corner and students can expect it to get a little hairy around Mohawk due to the efforts of the Beard Appreciation Society. The club’s goal is to promote awareness of prostate and testicular cancer on campus throughout the year. Thanks to the growing popularity of the Movember Movement, November is the busiest time of year.
The Beard Appreciation Society spreads its message through promotion and fundraising, both within Mohawk and through social media to raise awareness for the many health concerns that affect mainly men.
The club also encourages members to join for healthy discussion and tutorials on styling, grooming, and facial hair care. The club has around 40 members including most of the male Mohawk Student Association board members, as well as a few women.
Club founder Antonio Weiss de Vera says, “I am so glad such a diverse group is interested in our main mission of raising awareness for men’s health issues.”
After being diagnosed with cancer three years ago, de Vera decided to turn his life around. “When I was over 400 pounds, I realized that Movember was the only dominant male health initiative that received abundant amounts of interest internationally,” he says. “I felt that I would bring a little light and self-awareness wherever I could.”
Club member George McConnell joined the club to become more active in the school community. “I believe in the [club’s] message and the goal of promoting men’s health and removing stigma concerning proper preventative medicine for these diseases,” he says. “I think it’s a great goal and with the Movember movement becoming more popular it is a way to add a bit of fun to a serious issue.”
Mohawk students can look forward to a variety of events in November including a beard growing competition where they can donate to “bet” on their favourite beards. Local hair studios will also offer beard trims.
The club’s motto is, ”A club for those who have, want or simply appreciate”. De Vera jokes, “Whether your beard is on your face or in your heart, we welcome you equally, no matter your parts.”

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