Meet Mikala

MikalaMikala is a first-year Honours Business Co-op student at the University of Windsor. A 2016 Youth Bursary recipient and member of WFCU CU.

Winning numerous academic awards through high school, Mikala was accepted into the Outstanding Scholars Program at the University of Windsor. This is a program specially designed for the top one hundred students entering an honours degree undergraduate program. Through this program, the chosen students are given the opportunity to work closely with professors in their department in terms of their research, experiments and various other innovative projects.

On her application, Mikala wrote “If I know one thing about myself, it is that I have never fallen short of a goal that I have set for myself, and do not plan to do so in the future. In this case, my goal is to become a lawyer, in order to better the lives of those around me by fighting for them when they are unjustly treated. I have put a plan in place, involving an undergraduate degree in Honours Business with Co-op as my major with Political Science as my minor.”

Meet Marisa

MarisaMarisa is a first-year student at the University of Windsor in the Developmental Psychology program. She is a 2016 Youth Bursary Recipient and member of Motor City Community CU.

Marisa has been active in giving back to her community. She was a youth group leader, helped set up classrooms before school starts in September at
W. J Langlois Elementary School, was a route director at the Hospice Triathlon, and face painter for McDonald’s McHappy Day.

Some of her future career goals include graduating from the University of Windsor with a degree in Developmental Psychology and going on to get her Masters in Psychology. From there she wishes to become a child psychologist working either for the W.E.C.D.S.B or for the Children’s Aid Society.

Meet William

WilliamWilliam is a first-year student at the University of Ottawa studying Business. He is a 2016 Youth Bursary recipient and a member of DUCA CU.

William is an exceptional young man dealing with a life altering condition. With his permission, we are sharing his story.

In his application, he wrote, “I wasn’t always a visually impaired person, Stargardt’s Disease, the genetic disorder I have, only awakes at the onset of puberty. Up to grade 5, I had good vision and therefore I had a normal childhood in the vision department with most things, whether they be school, learning to shoot, or playing baseball, came easily to me. When Stargardt’s entered my life, it challenged me and my ability to succeed in ways that I never could have imagined. From learning how to advocate for myself, to developing a great visual memory, to mastering practical problem solving, my disability has not only hindered me but has also forced me to overcome some of my greatest weaknesses thereby giving me a drive and ability to succeed I didn’t know I had.”

William didn’t let his condition slow him down, he was a DECA (International Business Competition) Provincial Finalist in 2013, 2014, and 2015. He was the student council treasurer his last two years of high school managing a budget of $30,000. He has been involved with Sea Cadets for many years and currently holds the rank of Petty Officer Second Class. This put him second in command of the Guelph Sea Cadet Corp. He provided weekly instruction to a group of junior and intermediate cadets, created lesson plans and oversaw other instructors. He says “I lead by example and help the new recruits assimilate to the program.” He organized the drill and ceremonial team who perform in parades (Santa Claus Parade, Remembrance Day Parade) and commemorative ceremonies (Battle of the Atlantic, Colour Day) in Guelph throughout the year.

We have a section on our bursary application “Extenuating Circumstances.” We want to better understand the challenges applicants might be facing. William titled his “My Abilities vs. My Disability” and wrote a compelling essay, not to elicit sympathy, but to create understanding. He said he has become a relaxed and confident public speaker, and developed the ability to face unique problems with highly individualized problem solving skills.

William summed it up nicely, saying “Disability or ability; those are words. Stargardt’s, instead, has helped me to think beyond the idea of disability and to take action so that I can become the best person I can be.”

William, you are an inspiration!

Meet Tejas

TejasTejas is a 2nd year student studying Political Science at the University of Windsor. He is a 2016 Youth Bursary recipient and member of Motor City Community CU.

Tejas is the immediate past President of the Ontario Young Liberals (Windsor/Tecumseh) and an Executive Member of the Model United Nations (Univ. of Windsor). A tennis enthusiast he had the opportunity to volunteer with a couple of the International Tennis Wheelchair Tournaments and was a crew member for Rogers Cup Promotions. He has also volunteered with the Society of St. Vincent De Paul, the Ontario 55+ Summer Games, the International Children’s Games, and with numerous Gujarat Samaj events.

Academically Tejas holds a 94% major’s average in Political Science. He is a member of Outstanding Scholars, a prestigious organization within the University that allows research opportunities for the academically inclined. He is also on the President’s Honour Roll.

After he complete university Tejas plans to take legal studies in hopes of becoming a lawyer. He wrote, “Argumentation and honest debate in hopes of discerning the truth has always been important to me. I believe my passion for achieving the goal of becoming a lawyer coupled with my success in academics will allow me to become a successful and capable lawyer. Although I am not completely sure on what type of law I hope to study, international law currently interests me as global human rights issues are important to me.”

Meet Prakash

PrakashPrakash is a 4th year student at the University of Windsor in their Political Science program, specializing in Law and Politics. He is a 2016 Youth Bursary recipient and member of Motor City Community CU.

Prakash has a long list of volunteer activities giving back to his community. He is currently on United Way/Centraide Windsor-Essex as a Youth Board Director. The list is long so we will highlight a few of his past roles, Transit Windsor- Board Member, Mayors Youth Advisory Committee – Vice Chair, Undergraduate Society for International Relations, and Political Science- 1st Year Committee Member. He has helped at the Rogers Cup as a ball boy, International Children’s Games Official, Ontario Senior Games Official, Society of St. Vincent de Paul, International Wheelchair Tennis Tournament Official, and volunteer at the OSA Argumentation Conference and Ontario Math Association Conference.

We liked a comment on his application; my Grade 8 Volleyball coach taught me more lessons than I realized at the time, but one my favourite is this: “Hard work beats Talent. Unless Talent Works Hard.” We think Prakash you are in the talent works hard category.