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AUCC-Scotiabank Award Ceremony for Glendon’s International Studies Symposium on India


Representatives from the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) and the Bank of Nova Scotia presented the 2004 Award for Excellence in Internationalization to members of the student organizing committee of this year’s Glendon International Studies Symposium on India. In a formal ceremony on November 29th, hosted by Glendon Associate Principal (Student Affairs) Louise Lewin, Shulamit Yemane and Zac Fillingham accepted the award on behalf of the entire team responsible for creating and organizing this entirely student-run event.

“In the life of every institution, there are moments of great pride, not just ideals. This event is one of those moments for Glendon and for York”, said Glendon acting principal Françoise Boudreau, in her opening address. In a fully bilingual speech, AUCC president Claire Morris stated that “…the objective of this prize, in existence since 1996, is to provide support to students in their trans-cultural efforts. The prize promotes the development of the next generation of our leaders, and the acquisition of knowledge and skills needed for this fast-paced international world.” Morris added that the jury had to choose from an impressive range of studies and activities in the field of internationalization. She commented that two aspects made the Glendon event stand out among its worthy competitors: the fact that it was the most transformative initiative, with a strong positive impact on the students, and that it was the only project completely conceived and mounted by students. Morris then praised Scotiabank’s partnership and dedication to “preparing students for a planetary career” and added that Scotiabank was an important, active partner in selecting the winners.

District vice president Mike Henry, representing Scotiabank at the award ceremony, expressed the bank’s great pride in supporting the efforts of the students. “Scotiabank recognizes the great benefit of cultural and intellectual diversity among future professionals to employers in this country. We must help create a workforce that can compete at home and abroad in a truly ‘global village’.”

In accepting the award on behalf of their team, students Yemeni and Fillingham thanked the AUCC and Scotiabank for the recognition and financial support this award represents, supporting every step in this comprehensive study project, including last summer’s research trip to India and the upcoming publication of the papers presented at the Symposium. Yemeni and Fillingham expressed great praise for all those at Glendon who worked with them to make the project a success, including associate principal Louise Lewin, manager of student financial services Fiona Kay, Glendon principal Kenneth McRoberts and Glendon international studies professor Arthur Rubinoff, a specialist on India, who supervised the fall term courses in preparation for the symposium and accompanied the group on their field trip to India. The highest praise went to the coordinator of the international studies programme, Domenico Mazzeo, “… the spiritual head of this project and the advisor to the members of the study group, now working and studying all over the globe”, said Fillingham.

The concluding speaker at the award ceremony, York’s associate vice president (International) Adrian Shubert confirmed that “International Studies is at the heart of Glendon’s mandate and now at the heart of what we are trying to accomplish across the university.” He outlined the increasing numbers of international opportunities at Glendon and York. “Clearly, something wonderful is happening [at Glendon], demonstrating unparalleled enthusiasm”, added Shubert.

The Glendon International Studies Symposium was initiated in 1995 by Glendon students wishing to deepen their knowledge and experience of foreign countries and regions, and to gain a better understanding of the relationships of these with Canada. Other countries and regions explored in previous years include South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, Southeast Asia and Russia (which won the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE)’s prestigious Student Leadership in Internationalization Award in 2003).

Glendon’s was one of only four Canadian projects to be honoured with the Scotiabank-AUCC Awards for Excellence in Internationalization, in recognition of innovative programs that help students prepare for a more global world. The awards recognize institutions for their excellence in forming a future generation of political, social, cultural and business leaders able to understand and make the most of a world increasingly interconnected by technology, trade and travel.

Article submitted by Glendon communications officer Marika Kemeny

Published on December 2, 2004