Alum Natasha Jovanovic talks about her favourite volunteer placements with the Canadian Wildlife Federation and Tree Fest Ottawa and the skills she acquired while volunteering.
"I wanted to volunteer to give back to my community and meet new people. I also knew that I wanted to work in the environmental field so I wanted to try and get as much experience as possible before graduating."
The Pathy Foundation Fellowship provides community-focused experiential learning opportunities for graduating students to become active and effective change-makers, bringing new ideas and working closely with communities to foster sustainable and positive social change in Canada and around the world.
This year, three students from the University of Ottawa have been selected by the Pathy Foundation and have received $40,000 towards their project. With that money, Daniella Gallardo, Nayaelah Siddiqui and Samantha Elizabeth Dignam will be able to affect real change in communities that are important to them.
(...) Zoé Boirin eventually returned to the University of Ottawa, to undertake a PhD in law. The research for her thesis focuses on the right of Indigenous peoples to be consulted about mining projects that would affect them. She also puts her advocacy skills to good use during her community engagement placements to help Indigenous community organizations. She has also travelled to Siberia and India to do field work with different Indigenous groups.
Maria Gomez Regalado, a translation and music bachelor’s student from the University of Grenada, in Spain, wanted to get involved with the aged because of her grandmother in Spain, who was in need of company. When, as an exchange student at uOttawa during the 2018–2019 academic year, she registered for FLS2791, a course on learning French as a second language through community volunteering, she chose a placement as a French-language friendly visitor at the Garry J. Armstrong long-term care facility.
On February 6, a panel discussion titled “Dialogue on the Importance and Impact of Local and International Community Engagement” took place, to raise awareness of the added value of community engagement for students. Panel members included Rebecca Tiessen, a full professor in the Faculty of Social Sciences, Gwen Madiba Moubouyi, 2019 Aeroplan campaign ambassador, three students who have experienced community engagement here or abroad, as well as Stéphane Cardinal, former director of the Michaëlle Jean Centre for Global and Community Engagement, who served as facilitator. The event, organized by the Centre and the International Office, was also meant to encourage people to donate their Aeroplan Miles to help cover travel costs for students planning to volunteer abroad.