YOUNG ADULT NOMINEES
For leading by example and being an inspiring role model to her peers.
Award Presented by:
Rogers Radio Group
Alivia Chanyi is a first-generation female pilot and recent Conestoga College General Arts and Science – Aviation Fast Track program graduate. Alivia is currently continuing her education through the Conestoga College pathway to Wilfrid Laurier University through its Bachelor of Arts – Humanities with Leadership Foundations Program. As an accomplished and awarded pilot at a young age, Alivia volunteers her time in hopes of inspiring young females to pursue careers in aviation. She was also selected as one of six finalists in Canada to compete in a pilot competition which she was selected for based on high marks in-flight and on paper.
Amina came to Canada in 2016 with her family to Kitchener. A few years later, she graduated with multiple academic and activity awards. Amina is currently in her fourth year of a Bachelor of Public Relations degree program and has devoted much of her free time to volunteering for a variety of causes. Amina is a very active youth in Waterloo Region working and volunteering in the non-for-profit sector such as KW Chamber Orchestra, the Mennonite Center committee's sponsoring group, Capstone Team Member with the Region of Waterloo, and fundraising team for Food4Kids.
Andrea Chakma is a fourth-year mechatronics engineering student at the University of Waterloo and is the president of the Women in Engineering (WiE) Undergraduate Committee. She is also currently a Director on the Girl Guides of Canada Board of Directors. Andrea has taken the initiative to volunteer an extensive amount of her personal time over the last three years to develop WiE programming for students at the University of Waterloo, but also for Youth in Grades 1-12. Andrea’s leadership and contributions to Women in Engineering has made a tremendous impact on current students as well as the next generation of girls and non-binary youth by encouraging them to explore STEM.
Ann Gordon is an Honours Arts and Business Co-op student at the University of Waterloo, majoring in Liberal Studies. She’s spent two terms working as an Engagement Co-op Student in the Arts Undergraduate Office, which serves an incredibly diverse group of undergraduate students. She’s approached this role with a high amount of empathy and insight, providing programming that specifically addresses the mental health challenges and learning gaps of young adults over the last few years, in order to help them make the most of their journey through university.
Breanna began her undergraduate education at the University of Waterloo in 2018, pursuing a Bachelor of Environmental Studies in Geography and Environmental Management, specializing in Climate Change and Environment. As an honours co-op student, she had the opportunity to represent the University at Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), the RCMP, and Evolugen by Brookfield Renewable, working on some of the greatest environmental challenges of today. Breanna has an infectious passion for the environment and bettering the world around her. She is just in the infancy of dedicating her life to this cause, but will no doubt have long-lasting impacts.
Claire Strong is focused on the importance of different educational perspectives and is pursuing an honours specialization in Business/Legal Studies and an Indigenous Studies Honour. Claire has been working towards the Memegwaanh Indigenous Honour to cultivate her curiosity and view of social justice. Claire works as a Western Law Library student assistant, is a member of Generocksity, a Canada-wide organization focused on giving back to the community, and is involved in University intramural basketball. Claire has lived her entire life in Waterloo and attended Laurel Heights Secondary School. She will be attending law school in September 2023.
Katie Traynor is a 3rd year planning undergraduate at the University of Waterloo pursuing a minor in legal studies and a specialization in urban design. Katie has been an active community volunteer both overseas and in the region for many years. She is a motivated leader who consistently dedicates her time to volunteer opportunities and works to inspire others to pursue their aspirations. Katie continues to make an impact on her community through participation in community groups, clubs, fundraising, student advocacy, entrepreneurship and more. Katie works as the new Vice-President elect at the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA).
Kaylie (Wing Nam) Tsang
Kaylie is a second-year University of Waterloo student who is passionate about rehabilitation and recreation, and has made many positive contributions to her community. She is working with UWaterloo Recreations to bring jump rope as a new program to the school community. Kaylie is an active volunteer, serving as a research assistant, teaching assistant, and Faculty of Health Ambassador, where she provides prospective students with guidance around post-secondary education options. The University of Waterloo has recognized Kaylie's efforts by presenting her with the Warren Lavery Memorial Award, The Hong Kong Alumni Association Entrance Award, and the President's Scholarship Distinction.
At only seventeen years of age, Kenzy continues to strike the balance between academic excellence and exemplary leadership. She has excelled in the International Baccalaureate Programme, was one of forty-four students selected worldwide for UW’s 2022 QSYS, and is enrolled in IBM’s 2022-2023 QubitxQubit program. Showing incredible dedication to advocacy, she is serving her second term as elected WRDSB Student Trustee. Outside of school, Kenzy has promoted well-being as the co-founder and VP at the JA company YOÜ (2021), and promoted financial literacy in Canadian schools as the co-founder and Outreach Director of the non-profit Canadian Young Investors Society (2022).
As an Honours Art and Business student at the University of Waterloo, Leah is an Academic All Canadian athlete. She currently represents the Women’s Varsity Hockey team after returning from playing in the NCAA D1 hockey program and Union College in New York. Among her many accomplishments, Leah was selected for Team Canada at the FISU Winter University Games 2023, where her team won gold. She was awarded Player of the Year for women’s hockey - Ontario University Athletics, and has surpassed the University of Waterloo record for regular season goals and total points. This summer, Leah will coach young girls at the University of Waterloo hockey camp and give back to the sport she grew up playing. Leah exemplifies, “if you see her, you can be her”. As a female athletic role model, Leah inspires the next generation of women’s hockey.
As a first-generation Canadian, Rachel is currently completing her undergraduate degree in health studies with a minor in gerontology at the University of Waterloo. Rachel is an exceptional role model who consistently uses her talents and time to volunteer in her local and international communities. Among her many accomplishments, Rachel is known in her communities for creating belonging, advocating for equality, and advancing opportunities for health and wellness. In 2021, Rachel received the prestigious Okafor-Ogbujiagba Award at the University of Waterloo, recognizing her leadership and advocacy around African equity on and off campus. She is currently the Director of Advocacy and Education for the Racial Advocacy for Inclusion, Solidarity and Equity (RAISE) group at the University of Waterloo.
Sara Terier is a Sudanese Grade 12 student at Laurel Heights Secondary School (LHSS). She runs her school’s Black Student Union (BSU), Affinity Roundtable meetings and has helped plan several Black Brilliance events. She is passionate about social justice, animal welfare, the arts, and science and frequently keynotes at events to speak about her journey. Her empathetic nature and community-oriented mindset drive her to get involved in causes she cares about. In her free time, she volunteers at her local Humane Society, working towards her goal of becoming a Veterinarian.
A second-year Computer Science Student at the University of Waterloo, Sarah is a young woman with a clear vision and an authentic spirit, fully determined to make the future a better place. She served as a Student Trustee of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board, where she represented and advocated for more than 38,000 students across 5 high schools and 43 elementary schools. She served as the Ontario Student Voice Awards Chair for the Ontario Student Trustee Association, amplifying the voices of 2.4 million Ontario students. Sarah’s advocacy for menstrual equity within Waterloo Region and alongside the Ontario Student Trustee Association resulted in the Ministry of Education's partnership with Shoppers Mart Drug to provide 18 million free menstrual products to high schools across Ontario.
Shreya is a fierce advocate, a strong community leader, and an excellent role model for other youth in our community. Shreya demonstrates a strong passion for sustainability and equity. Shreya is highly involved in her community and as a student at the University of Waterloo, as demonstrated through her commitment to service in both employment and volunteer capacities. As the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA)’s Sustainability Commissioner, Shreya inspires her peers to consider sustainability in all her work. Shreya is also the manager of their on campus Thrift Store WUSA Thrift! Her work in sustainability led her to being selected as a panellist at the University of Waterloo’s Eco Summit, where she spoke about youth leadership and engagement in environmental justice, and encouraged her peers to engage in this important advocacy work.
Sylvia is a Kinesiology student at the University of Waterloo. She is on track to graduate a term early, in December of this year. After her undergraduate degree, she plans to attend medical school and pursue a career in sports medicine. She is the trainer for the Kitchener-Waterloo Siskins Junior B Hockey Team. This year she was also the trainer for the Huron Perth Laker Major Midget AAA Hockey Team and the University of Waterloo Varsity Field Hockey Team. When she’s not at a hockey rink she tutors first year students in physics and acts as an ambassador for Kinesiology.
Tia VanDerGulik is the current Miss Canada Globe and uses her title to promote mental health. Tia experienced challenges with mental health, which empowered her to create her blog www.loveitall.ca, which focuses on the importance of coping strategies and prioritizing your mental health. Tia hosts interactive workshops on mental health and will continue teaching others as she represents Canada at Miss Globe 2023. As an environmental engineering student, Tia mentors young women in engineering. Tia works as a Head Lifeguard for the City of Waterloo, where she is proud to interact with the community while mentoring young lifeguards.