Huge financial support for students to pursue higher education
September 27, 2018
Architecture is still a male-dominated field even though 139 years have elapsed since Mary Page broke the gender barrier as the first woman in North America to graduate with an accredited degree.
First-year university student Brianna Brown is seeking to be part of the movement hoping to change the narrative while making her mark.
The teenager is enrolled in the University of Waterloo architectural program that offers premier co-op opportunities while allowing students to learn from some of the best in the global architectural community.
“It’s a profession where you have to be versatile and architecture is always evolving,” she said. “That’s what I really love about this field and the reason I have gravitated to it.”
Brown is in the right place honing and developing her skills.
Regarded as a breeding ground for innovative architectural minds and home to world-changing research and inspired teaching, University of Waterloo graduates include Jamaican-born Brigitte Shim who is a member of the Order of Canada and Camille Mitchell who is with KPMB which is a leading Canadian studio.
A graduate of St. Thomas Aquinas Secondary School regional arts program, Brown was among 15 Peel region university/college freshmen honoured with United Achievers Club of Brampton (UACB) scholarships on September 15.
St. Augustine Secondary School valedictorian Joseph Ogunnupe graciously accepted the recognition.
“Outside our close family members, people don’t see the hard work we put in and sleepless nights we endure to get to this point,” he said. “It’s so fulfilling when a community organization says ‘you have done well’ and we are going to help you with financial assistance through the next stage of your academic journey.”
Ogunnupe, 18, is pursuing business management studies at York University.
“The University of Guelph-Humber and Ryerson were also on my radar, but I chose York because it offers a program that allows me to study business and technology at the same time,” he added.
The aspiring entrepreneur, whose family brought him from England a few months after birth, is also an accomplished musician. He plays the piano, trumpet, guitar and drums and is a bandleader.
Scholarships were also presented to St. Thomas Aquinas graduates Maysun Arcand and Gavin Crawford who are enrolled in York University’s social sciences & concurrent education and the University of Guelph criminal justice & public policy programs respectively.
An honour roll student through high school and a soccer camp counsellor, Arcand intends to become a high school teacher. Crawford, who captained the volleyball team and was the most valuable player in his last two years, plans to attend law school and fulfil his dream of becoming a criminal lawyer.
Other recipients were North Park Secondary School graduate and Trent University student Ranice Cumberbatch who aspires to be a forensic biologist, Kristian Francis who is in Ryerson University’s engineering program, Cornelia Gillespie who is at Algonquin College studying travel & tourism, aspiring paediatrician Ebonee Leonard who is in the University of Ottawa’s biomedical science program, Nwaefidoh Amarachukwu who is in Sheridan College’s nursing program, University of Waterloo actuarial science student Joshua Tulloch, Andrew Skerritt whose long-term goal is to become a TSN sports broadcaster after graduating from the University of Toronto (U of T) journalism program, Ontario scholar Rajay Pyne who is in U of T’s finance program and Brock University students Jalen David, Breanna Jeremiah and Alexis Knowles.
David, who excelled at soccer and football at St. Marcellinus Secondary School, is in the biological science program, Jeremiah is enrolled in the sports management program and Knowles – who hopes to become a paediatrician – is pursuing medical sciences studies.
A total of 380 students have been awarded scholarships worth nearly $375,000 since the scholarship program was launched in 1985.
In choosing Ingrid Berkeley-Brown to be the keynote speaker, the organizers selection was sound given that the event’s theme was, ‘A Tribute to Excellence’.
Last February, she made history when promoted to deputy chief in Peel region making her the first Black female law enforcement officer to attain the rank in Canada.
“In reading your bios, I must say that your achievements so far have been nothing short of excellent and it’s a privilege to be part of this event to celebrate your outstanding work in high school and your significant community contributions,” Berkeley-Brown told the scholarship recipients.
She encouraged the young achievers to frame obstacles as opportunities, expand their networks, seek mentors and be mentors and stay the course when challenges surface.
“There are naysayers that will come before you and try to redirect you,” said Berkeley-Brown. “I am here as proof that if you are steadfast and persistent, you will achieve your goals.”
She and Toronto Police inspector Sonia Thomas were the only Black female recruits in an Ontario Police College 1986 class of 300.