Indigenous Graduate Spotlight: Leon Picha (BCom’23)
"I want there to be a day where there’s more than just two red scarves [at the Faculty of Management convocation] and that’s what I’m going to continue to work to achieve," says Leon Picha (BCom’23).
A member of the Kwantlen Nation and a 2019 McCall MacBain Loran Scholar, Leon proudly crossed the stage to receive his degree at the Spring 2023 ceremony, graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce with a Major in Strategic Management, a Concentration in Information Systems, and a Minor in Indigenous Studies. He was also recognized with this year’s BCom Class of 1986 Activity Award for Leadership.
A proud member of the McGill Desautels Indigenous Working Group, Leon has always sought to give back to the Indigenous community and increase Indigenous student success. He was one of 71 Indigenous graduates recognized for their accomplishments at this year’s Scarf Ceremony, hosted by McGill’s First Peoples’ House, the School of Continuing Studies, and the Office of First Nations and Inuit Education. In recognition of their achievements, Indigenous graduates receive a special scarf designed by Tammy Beauvais, a Mohawk designer from Kahnawake.
In June, celebrated as National Indigenous History Month in Canada, the Office of Indigenous Initiatives sat down to chat with Leon. When asked what his advice would be for Indigenous students, he advocated for doing what you love and staying true to yourself. He states, "stand in your strength," even when things get difficult.
We wish Leon the best in all his future endeavours!