Glendon Campus
York University
2275 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M4N 3M6
Top Scholars Choose Glendon

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It’s no mystery: the best students have the chance to choose the best universities. So it’s really exciting for Glendon to demonstrate its high educational standards by the number of outstanding scholars it is attracting. This year’s Scholarship Reception on September 20th was a clear illustration of this fact, with the largest number of award recipients in the college’s history.

Close to 160 people attended the reception – primarily students and their family members. In addition to the greatest number of recipients, the total amount disbursed also added up to a new high: over $800,000 in scholarships and bursaries so far, and September isn’t even over yet!

“We have scholarship winners from across Canada, indeed from around the world”, says Glendon Student Financial Services manager Fiona Kay. “We are very pleased to welcome the recipient of an International Circle of Scholars award from Trinidad and Tobago, as well as the winner of an International Scholarship for the Caribbean, and an International Scholar from Africa.”

In his welcoming speech, Glendon principal Kenneth McRoberts underlined the excellence of Glendon’s international and interdisciplinary community and was proud to announce that one of only four York President’s Awards has gone to a Glendon applicant, along with other important scholarships. “We congratulate the seven Harris Steel Entrance Scholarship winners – three from the west and four from Quebec, and the nine BMO winners from across the country. Add these to the several hundred scholarship winners from Ontario, and you can see that Glendon is a vibrant community of intellectually minded individuals!” McRoberts challenged these students to continue to excel in their first year on their own, and to make the most of the unique bilingual, multicultural environment which Glendon has to offer. “Now that you are at university, you will realize that there are no right answers; it’s the questions you ask that really matter”, added McRoberts.

Jaclyn Volkhammer is the winner of the prestigious President’s Award. She is a French immersion graduate from Langstaff Secondary School in Richmond Hill, with a graduating average of 96.3%. Volkhammer has been considering Glendon ever since her first visit in grade 11. Since then, she has attended several open houses, academic coffee houses and other recruitment events. By the time it was the moment to choose, she had no doubts. “I chose Glendon for many reasons”, says Volkhammer. “I like its size and the friendliness of the community. The bilingual opportunity and the beauty of the campus were other reasons why I was sure that this was where I wanted to study.”

French immersion graduate Kristen Pennington from LaSalle, ON (near Windsor) received the Betty and John Banks Award, recognizing her high marks and community work. She is choosing Canadian Studies with a view to continuing on to Osgoode Hall to study criminal law. “I come from an Anglophone family but I am determined to continue developing my French proficiency”, says Pennington. “Glendon offers me a great opportunity to do so. It’s my first time away from home and a big adjustment, but orientation and the residence environment have made me feel right at home. I love the big city and all that it has to offer.”

Jarvis Collegiate graduate Saeeda God is not yet fully bilingual, but hopes to get there through her studies at Glendon. As part of her Service Bursary, she has received a placement at John Fisher Public School where she will be working with grade 6 French immersion students. “I chose to come to Glendon because the great environment, the opportunity to study in French and the beautiful campus really appealed to me,” says God.

Karine Dubois hails from Trois Rivières, Qué. and is planning to take International Studies in both English and French. She has received both a Bourse d’entrée du Québec (a Quebec Entrance Scholarship) and a Harris Steel Award. “I live off-campus sharing with a friend, but I enjoy both the campus and the city, everything about my Glendon experience so far”, says Dubois.

As the M.C. of the reception, Associate Principal (Student Affairs) Louise Lewin next introduced Polina Kukar , a top student who has just returned after a year overseas, for her 4th year of a double major in International Studies and Psychology, in addition to being enrolled in the concurrent education program. Kukar is a scholarship winner who continues to receive numerous awards at York, and has lots of extracurricular activities under her belt. She encouraged students to take every opportunity that is offered to them. She confirmed that it is possible to do well at university while working in the community and pursuing other interests as well.

Glendon alumnus Ian Roberge, Political Science professor and coordinator of the Bilingual Certificate in Public Administration and Public Policy, was the next to take the floor. Roberge is president of Friends of Glendon (FoG), a volunteer organization within the college dedicated to offering financial help to students in need. He gave recognition to the continued outstanding contribution of members of LLIR (Living and Learning in Retirement, ), a continuing education program for retired people, which is housed at Glendon since its inception in 1973. The program’s members donate generously each year to student bursaries and awards; they also open their homes and their hearts to students away from home during holiday times. Al Johnston, LLIR’s current president, and past president Margaret Gibson were on hand to underline the importance of this event.

Roberge next announced the creation of two new scholarships funded by FoG: the Bourse Louise Lewin en études françaises, and the Gilles Fortin Scholarship in Business Economics. They honour two pillars of Glendon’s administration: Dr. Lewin, a long-standing faculty member and Associate Principal for Student Affairs; and Fortin, a York graduate and Glendon’s executive officer for many years. “These new awards were named after these two members of the Glendon community in order to recognize the outstanding work they have done and continue to do to help students and the FoG”, said Roberge. In an emotional ceremony, Lewin and Fortin received framed certificates representing the awards named after them.

Article by Glendon communications officer Marika Kemeny

Published on September 26, 2007