You don’t have to look far to find strong leaders.

At IGNITE, we are always looking for new ways to celebrate the amazing students at Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber. That’s why we introduced the IGNITE Leadership Awards.

This new initiative is a way for us to acknowledge the leaders in our community and to provide recognition to students who have demonstrated their leadership qualities, both on and off campus.

We awarded a total of five Leadership Awards within the following three categories: Community Leader, Outstanding Leadership, and Student Staff.

And even though we can’t celebrate with the winners in person, we can help you get to know some of the amazing leaders right here, on your campus!

So, put your hands together for our first ever IGNITE Leadership Award winners!

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Christen Wong, Community Leader Award

“Many of the leaders in our community love to contribute to the lives of others because it’s fulfilling and meaningful to us. We don’t lead just for show, we do it because it’s in our hearts and we strive to use our social influence in positive ways to help others achieve their goals.” 

Elad Menahem, Community Leader Award

“My current plans to continue my on-campus and community involvement is to follow through on what I have already set in place, which is to take my spot in the Guelph Senate, representing the University of Guelph-Humber, and to volunteer with ACT (formerly the Aids Committee of Toronto). I would also like to expand my volunteering over the summer to more places in need of assistance, while hopefully getting more students involved with student government and other extracurriculars next semester.

“I hope to advocate and represent for all 2SLGBTQ+ students at UofGH, and be an example that we are just as capable to lead as anybody else. I am always looking for ways to get involved and am excited for the journey to follow.” 

Victoria Stancel, Outstanding Leadership Award

“My advice for those looking for ways to develop their own leadership skills is to be confident in their goal and to plan ahead. Additionally, to recognize that social media is a strong platform where you can easily reach out to others to support your initiative.

“For instance, I was able to connect with Indigenous families in need through a Facebook group called “Helping our Northern Neighbours.” In the beginning, I started to make my own donations and it wasn’t until I left donation boxes around local Starbucks cafes that I realized more people were willing to contribute to the good cause.” 

Heba Elgharbawy, Student Staff Award

“Since my first year at UofGH, I made it my personal mission to better my community, including the student body, so that other students can reach their goals and do the best they possibly can. I wanted to make sure that at the end of my four years, I could say that I left this university in a better place than when I first came.

Zainab Qamar, Student Staff Award

“I believe that awards like these encourage students to create meaningful change at Humber and UofGH and improve the lives of their peers for the better. They motivate student staff to excel at their work and deliver excellence in their projects. IGNITE’s initiative to offer these awards will highlight the efforts of leaders in our communities and inspire students to  assiduously work for the causes that they believe in.” 

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Thank you for being the amazing leaders that you are and congratulations on winning one of our Leadership Awards!

We know that our school community is filled with more great leaders than we have awards to give, but we would also like to thank you for all the work you have done! And if you didn’t win this year, keep leading, keep inspiring and nominate yourself (or someone you know) next year!

*These interviews have been edited for length and clarity*

Leading doesn’t stop after graduation. Take a look at some leaders who graduated from Humber College and UofGH!

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