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UPEI Student Union creates award to recognize engaged, returning students

UPEI Student Union.
UPEI Student Union.

The UPEI Student Union has created a new $500 award to be granted to one returning UPEI student per year in any level of full-time study who has demonstrated dedicated and extraordinary campus involvement.

The UPEI Student Union Campus Leadership Award was created through a unique set of circumstances.

Student union president Hammad Ahmed approached the union’s general manager and vice-president finance William McGuigan to discuss the possibility of an endowed award, funded by the student union. Stephanie Cairns, the UPEI student council representative for the School of Mathematical and Computational Sciences (SMCS), also contacted McGuigan with an interest in creating an award. McGuigan connected the two, and the award was set in motion.

“UPEI has hundreds of wonderful donor awards, but I noticed in my own applications for the fall awards cycle that the vast majority have strict criteria that can limit students from being eligible,” Cairns said.

“As SMCS rep, I want to ensure that students in my program, and in all programs, have the ability to reduce the burden of tuition fees, regardless of their field of study or their particular background or interests. Their hard work and their involvement on campus is what matters most.”

Academic achievement will not be a defining factor. The award is also unavailable to current student union employees and elected officials.

“We are thrilled that the award has been approved and that it is accessible to all students who take on leadership roles in the school, including international students, graduate students, and students in any major who may not already have access to specific awards,” said Ahmed.

“With increasing costs of living for post-secondary students, it is important for our organization to help students in whatever capacity we can.”

The award will be presented through the winter awards cycle in February 2018. However, in future years, the award will be part of the fall award cycle.

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