McGill Alert / Alerte de McGill

Updated: Thu, 07/18/2024 - 18:12

Gradual reopening continues on downtown campus. See Campus Public Safety website for details.

La réouverture graduelle du campus du centre-ville se poursuit. Complément d'information : Direction de la protection et de la prévention.

Three McCall MacBain Scholars join 24-25 MPP

Three of the 30 newly selected McCall MacBain Scholars will enter the Max Bell School of Public Policy this fall 2024. Recipients were chosen based on exceptional character, community engagement, leadership potential, entrepreneurial spirit, academic strength, and intellectual curiosity.

Al-Amin Ahamed is a Doctor of Pharmacy candidate at the University of Toronto who established a student aid bursary for professional students as the elected vice-president of the University of Toronto Students' Union. They led the Undergraduate Pharmacy Society and served as president of the PharmaPride Club for two years to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion in healthcare. “Not seeing people like me represented in the spaces I found impactful motivated me to take on that role myself. By volunteering, I have been able to make meaningful differences in the community to promote representation through equity, diversity, and inclusion,” they said. “I hope to leverage my knowledge as a pharmacist to investigate the disproportionate impacts of illicit drug use in the 2SLGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities. By exploring international drug laws, I hope to develop a global framework for drug policy reform that shifts away from punishment in favour of alternatives that protect public health.”

Al co-founded a harm reduction venture, which secured first place at a pharmacy business competition, and also led the intramural dodgeball team. Previously, during their undergraduate studies at Innis College, they volunteered as a social innovation ambassador. 

“Words cannot articulate what this scholarship means to me. Being a queer, non-binary person of colour, I never felt that these types of opportunities were meant for people like me," said Al. "McCall MacBain not only acknowledges but also celebrates diversity in all its forms, so this scholarship truly is a testament to enriching the lives of others and leading with purpose.”

Harley Martin worked in forestry for 10 years and is now a history student at Concordia. As general coordinator of the student union, he works with the executive team, staff, and other community members to advocate for student rights and implement council directives. Two key initiatives Harley is overseeing are the planning and development process for a new student centre and the implementation of two new mental health services for students. He also serves as treasurer of a solidarity cooperative and previously volunteered at a community centre and at a shelter.

“I really enjoyed the whole final interview process!" said Harley. "It was wonderful to get the chance to meet so many interesting and interested people from around the world, and I am incredibly grateful to have been able to participate and to be selected as a McCall MacBain Scholar.”

Noémie Veilleux is a sexology student at Université du Québec à Montréal, and a sexual violence prevention specialist at Collectif social, a Quebec non-profit organization. Over the last few years, she coordinated the francophone activities of a pan-Canadian sexual and gender-based violence prevention plan on post-secondary campuses and, through her role as an intern with the Quebec Ministry of Higher Education, contributed to the implementation of the Quebec action plan to prevent and counter sexual violence in higher education establishments. Previously, she served as president of the Fédération étudiante collégiale du Québec and was an administrator of Forum jeunesse de l’Île de Montréal.

"It's so much more than a privilege, an honor or a mark of confidence. This scholarship gives me the opportunity to carry out projects that I didn't even dare consider," she said. "For me, the scholarship program represents a space where I can challenge myself, benefit from mentoring and share new insights in a compassionate, diverse and forward-thinking community."

The scholarships are the result of a landmark $200 million gift in 2019 by John and Marcy McCall MacBain, the then-largest single donation in the country’s history. In total, 277 candidates were interviewed worldwide and 91 attended the final round of interviews in Montreal. The final cohort consists of 20 Canadians and 10 international students.

The McCall MacBain Scholarships at McGill also offered entrance awards to top candidates who were not selected as scholars. We're excited to have these recipients join us as MPPs!

  • Isabella Coronado Doria, from Colombia
  • Juan Francisco Escalante Villar, from Peru
  • Suhanya Joseph de Saram, from Sri Lanka
  • Jacob Kates Rose, from University of Toronto
  • Bianca Mammarella, from McMaster University

Applications will open in June 2024 for the 2025 McCall MacBain Scholarships. More information can be found at mccallmacbainscholars.org.

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