Hats off to our graduates

June 19, 2018 | Arts & Culture, Science, Society, Health, Business

Congratulations to our Class of 2018 student award recipients

This year’s student award winners worked hard and studied harder. They filled their days with classes, clubs and contributions that make us proud. Congratulations, students – a bright future awaits.

President’s Medal for Academic Excellence and Student Leadership

The President’s Medal recognizes an exemplary combination of academic achievement and contribution to the betterment of MacEwan University. Medal recipients are graduates who demonstrate the best qualities of a MacEwan University student by maintaining a high grade point average while providing leadership through active participation in university-wide committees, groups, organizations, or extra-curricular activities. One medal may be awarded to a graduating student in a certificate or diploma program and one medal to a graduating student in a degree program.



For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to save people’s lives. My dad was my role model. He found out he had MS in medical school and just pushed through. He was a psychiatrist for only eight years – he passed away in my first year at MacEwan – but he accomplished so much. He believed that making a difference was really important. He was a humanitarian and an educator. He never gave up. Every moment he had was precious.

Because of that, I never waste my time. I schedule every hour of my week, and I'm always thinking about what's next. There's always something else to do, something else to learn.

I was six or seven years old when I decided that I wanted to be a doctor, and about eight or nine when I knew I wanted to study space. I still want to do both – and more – become a physician, pursue space studies, be active in governance, serve for the armed forces and innovate using technology.

To me, everything is intertwined – health, politics, philosophy, economics, religion and social entrepreneurship. Even though my degree is in science, I’ve done research in sociology, I’m involved in politics, I’ve learned how to code. Finding the best solutions means being able to look at the problems from many different perspectives.

Graduating from MacEwan is really just the beginning. I’m going to pursue degrees in medicine, public policy and public health. It will probably be many years before I’m finished my education, but that’s fine. I’m excited. For me, this isn't about a job. It’s about being of service.  

– Ravina Anand, Bachelor of Science, Psychology, 2018 President’s Medal Recipient


I took a break for almost five years after high school and travelled through Central and South America and New Zealand. At first I tried a business program, but it didn’t feel like a good fit. So when I came to MacEwan, I had already decided that I wanted to find a way to use my creativity – I always loved art growing up – in a way that could change the world. Design felt like such a good way to do that.

So I looked for ways to learn about how design could make a difference. When a student from the School of Business came to one of our design classes to talk about business cases and clubs focused on being socially responsible, it sounded like a great way to get out of my design bubble. It really was.

There’s a whole web of people out there in different programs working and leading in different ways. Last summer I went to Europe for an interdisciplinary entrepreneurship competition where we created a startup from scratch. I learned so much and I got to help show people in other fields that designers are more than they often expect us to be – we don’t just come in at the end of the process and make things look pretty. We find creative solutions to problems. We’re part of teams that make everyone’s work stronger.

– Sharissa Johnson, Design Studies Diploma, 2018 President Medal Recipient

Know an exceptional student? Nomination them for the President's Medal.

Governor General’s Silver Medal (Degree)

The Governor General’s Silver Medal is awarded to the student who achieves the highest overall academic standing based on their Graduation Grade Point Average (GGPA) in a degree-level program. This medal is awarded at Spring Convocation.

  • Cassandra Janet Daniels, Bachelor of Applied Business Administration, Accounting

Governor General’s Bronze Medal (Diploma)

The Collegiate Bronze medal is awarded to the student who achieves the highest overall academic standing based on their Graduation Grade Point Average (GGPA) in a diploma-level program (minimum two-year, full-time duration). This medal is awarded at Spring Convocation.

  • Marissa Ashleigh Thomas, Therapist Assistant Diploma, Speech Language Pathologist Assistant

Dean’s Medal for Academic Excellence

The Dean’s Medal is each faculty or school’s highest academic honour. Each dean may award one medal to a graduating student in a certificate or diploma program and one medal to a graduating student in a degree program. Medal recipients are recognized by the dean for their exemplary success in meeting the learning challenges and academic requirements of their programs of study.

  • Taelina Marie Andreychuk, Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing
  • Jessica Elizabeth Brown, Bachelor of Science, Biological Sciences 
  • Cassandra Janet Daniels, Bachelor of Applied Business Administration, Accounting 
  • Virginia Jessie Dowdell, Bachelor of Communication Studies, Professional Communication 
  • Ashley Marie Hershey, Post-Basic Nursing Practice Post-Diploma Certificate, Hospice Palliative Care 
  • Colleen Samantha Knapp, Special Needs Educational Assistant Certificate 
  • Mark Andrew MacVicar, Theatre Production Diploma 
  • Kody Stephen Starling, Business Management Diploma 
  • Landon Jeffrey Turlock, Bachelor of Social Work  

Meet the Class of 2018

We're so proud to celebrate this year's graduates, medal recipients and distinguished award honourees.

Check out our graduate photo gallery and get to know more members of the Class of 2018. 


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