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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Graduate Student Leadership Award

Student Leadership

The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (SGPS) established the Graduate Student Leadership Award in 2019 to recognize graduate students enrolled at Ontario Tech University who have displayed excellence in leadership.

  • About

    A maximum of one award will be presented annually. The winner will represent excellence in leadership in graduate education at Ontario Tech.

  • Eligibility

    The nominee should be enrolled as a graduate student in good standing at Ontario Tech. Nominees not selected to receive an award may be nominated in a subsequent year.

    Previous recipients are not eligible to be nominated for a period of 2 years following the year in which they received the award.

  • Nomination Process and Deadline

    Nomination packages may be submitted by any faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellow or currently enrolled graduate student. Nominations may not be completed by the nominee.

    A complete nomination package will contain:

    1. Letter from the nominator(s) describing the leadership attributes of the graduate student as they pertain to the criteria outlined below (maximum 2 pages).
    2. Two letters of support from Ontario Tech students, colleagues or other community members who have closely interacted with the nominees in the past year (maximum 2 pages).
    3. Letter of support from the graduate supervisor/advisor, if different from the nominator, including a rationale as to why the nominee qualifies for the award. If the supervisor is the nominator, another faculty member may complete the letter of support (maximum 2 pages).
    4. The nominee's abbreviated CV including a summary of relevant accomplishments, their academic qualifications and any awards or special recognitions (maximum 3 pages).

    *Supporting documentation may be submitted in one of two ways:


    The award will normally be given out annually and will typically correspond to the SGPS Excellence Awards cycle. As such, the submission deadline for nomination packages will normally be the last week of May. The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will announce the submission dates as part of the call for nominations.

    This year's nominations are open from April 18 through June 1, 2022.

    Proceed to Nomination Form

  • Selection Process and Award Criteria

    Excellence is broadly defined and judged on the quality of the nominee’s contribution and commitment to the Ontario Tech community. Nominees should demonstrate excellence in one or more of the following areas:

    1. Mentorship and guidance of undergraduate and graduate students;
    2. Inspirational leadership that contributes to the prosperity and well-being of the University and the broader community;
    3. Distinguished academic record;
    4. Contributions and initiatives that enhance the Ontario Tech mission as it pertains to graduate education;
    5. Significant community participation and volunteering.

    The selection committee will be chaired by the Dean of the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies or designate. The committee will consist of at least three members, including one graduate faculty member, one graduate student (which may be the Graduate Studies Committee representative) and one full-time continuing staff member from outside SGPS. A member of SGPS will participate at committee meetings as a resource. Committee membership should include at least one of the previous award winners when available. The committee will review the nomination packages and recommend the recipient to the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

    All nominees will be notified of their nomination and invited to the SGPS Excellence Awards event for the announcement of the winner.
  • Public Recognition and Value of the Award

    A maximum of one award will be presented annually. Each award consists of a recognition plaque from the Dean of the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. The award will be publicly announced during the annual SGPS Excellence Awards ceremony.

    The awards celebration for the 2020 and 2021 winners will be held on April 21, 2022. Please register to attend the virtual event.

    The celebration for the 2022 SGPS Excellence Awards cycle is TBD.

  • Winners and Nominees


    • Amna Hassan, Faculty of Energy Systems and Nuclear Science (FESNS)
    • Marta Kocemba, Faculty of Energy Systems and Nuclear Science (FESNS)
    • Parag Patel, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)
    • Sara Sharifi, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)*


    • Sandra Aragon Aviles, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)
    • Yashwanth Dasari, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)
    • Keisha Deoraj, Faculty of Education (FEd)
    • Stacey Hawkins, Faculty of Health Sciences (FHSc)
    • Apoorva Kelkar, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)
    • Phuoc Huynh Sang, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)
    • Delana Theiventhiran, Faculty of Health Sciences (FHSc)
    • Deepa Vincent, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science (FEAS)*
    • Susan Yousufzai, Faculty of Health Sciences (FHSc)

    *denotes winner