By Managing Editor Molly Barrieau

This issue, The Nav was inspired by NASA’s recent findings of exoplanets in another solar system. Thus we have decided to incorporate the extra-terrestrial into our stories. But what about Earth?

Here in the True North (Canada), we are fortunate to have one of the highest land mass per person ratio. According to, who provided me with a snazzy infographic showing major countries and their land versus the population, compared to China and India, Canadians have almost three times as much space.

My sister moved to heavily-populated China last year to teach, unironically to pay off her unreasonable Canadian loans, and I was thinking about what it must be like to never feel alone. It takes concentrated effort to seek solitude in a country so densely packed with people.

Canadians have driveways long enough to have several moments all to themselves.

In the last few years I’ve begun to really cherish my alone time, amidst usually being surrounded by roommates, friends or colleagues. As I never intend to leave Canada for too long, I like knowing I‘ll always be able to get away from the crowd.

I mean, just look at Nunavut, an amazing and vast snowy wonderland for wolves and polar bears, but humans can’t even get to it by road. Our country is so big, we can’t even access it all on foot. Hell, Churchill, Manitoba has one road into it, and a few ferries. Canada is foreign to Canadians.

I mean, we’re talking about getting off Earth to avoid the inevitable destroying factors of global warming and climate change, yet I haven’t even seen all of my own country.

And then NASA found those planets. At least three that could be habitable. How cool, to be all by yourself, on a planet, alone.

But would we really be? I mean, habitable planets—could mean *uses quote fingers* Aliens. Hey, if the planets have livable land, who says there aren’t new neighbours to hang out with.

So, if you feel out of place, unrelatable, or just plain different, maybe TRAPPIST 9 is the solar system for you. And as you’ll see on page 22, there could be a new frontier in space dating. Tinder might have a hard time getting your location, but we’ll get satellites there soon.

Look for our full coverage of the findings from NASA, including an interview with a VIU Astronomy professor, on page 12, written by our resident space expert, Aislinn Cottell.

Also, if you’ve made it to the bottom, look for our Call for Resumes, we will be hiring next year’s staff soon. If you have any questions, email me

Molly is a creative writing major with a modern languages minor, has a love for editing, publishing and linguistics. She is in her fifth and final year at VIU. She hopes to land a job in Montreal and open a poutine truck with her partner when she retires.