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May 11, 2016

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Laurier’s sense of community and purpose were on full display at the recent Wilfrid Laurier University Alumni Association (WLUAA) Awards of Excellence ceremony in Waterloo.

From students giving back to their local communities to an alumnus who is changing how Wall Street works – the annual celebration demonstrated the diversity and dedication of Laurier’s alumni, faculty, staff and students.

The recipients this year were:

  • Student Alumnus of the Year – Chris Chung
  • Student Alumna of the Year – Shielarose Gandhi
  • Schaus Award for Staff – Jennifer Casey (BA ’89)
  • Hoffmann-Little Award for Faculty – M. Kristiina Montero
  • Faculty Mentoring Award – Laurie Barclay
  • Honorary Alumnus of the Year – Jim Butler
  • Young Alumna of the Year – Michelle Gould (BSc ’12)
  • Alumnus of the Year – Brad Katsuyama (BBA ’01)

Alumnus of the Year, Brad Katsuyama (BBA ’01) has become the catalyst of Wall Street reform since uncovering and solving a systemic high-frequency trading problem in the stock market, affecting millions of people. He received international recognition and was the protagonist in a best-selling book: Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt.

“Our mission in the Alumni Association is to engage and represent a community that supports and enriches our alumni, students and the university,” said WLUAA President, Marc Richardson (BA ’94). “Brad and the other recipients of the Awards of Excellence bring honour to Laurier. All of our winners this year have made significant, and often selfless, contributions to Laurier, and the local, provincial, national or international communities.”

Selflessness and service were overriding themes for all of the award recipients.

Young Alumna of the Year, Michelle Gould (BSc ’12), enrolled in Laurier’s inaugural Health Sciences program when she was just 15. Now at age 22, she is a first-year pediatric resident at Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto, where she is studying celiac disease, a condition that affects approximately one in 100 Canadian children.

One of her nominators, Bruce McKay, associate dean in the Faculty of Science, was also one of Gould’s professors. He wrote in his letter, “For Michelle, her personal success in medicine, and the contribution it allows her to make to society, is truly about the betterment of society. She is selfless in her pursuit of helping others.”

The event also included presentation of the Tom Berczi Campus Citizenship Scholarships to seven students. The awards honour former Alumni Association president Tom Berczi and recognize students who combine academic achievement with generous volunteer involvement within the Laurier community.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Erika Lade – Faculty of Music
  • Annalise Yundt – Lazaridis School of Business and Economics
  • Laura Ferguson – Faculty of Science
  • Danielle Jacobson – Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
  • Rochelle Adamiak – Faculty of Arts
  • Temitope Makanju – Faculty of Liberal Arts
  • Claudia Volpe – Faculty of Human And Social Sciences

“One of Laurier’s greatest assets is its vibrant sense of community,” said Max Blouw, president and vice-chancellor. “Our people are engaged members of society who get involved and make a positive difference in the communities they touch. Events like the Awards of Excellence affirm that our institutional proposition of inspiring lives of leadership and purpose is being fulfilled by our alumni, students, faculty and staff.”

Learn more about the Awards of Excellence program and past recipients.


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