My name is Elizabeth Maki (nee Elliott) and I graduated from Renison College in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Religious Studies and minoring in Social Development Studies. I not only studied at Renison, I also lived there for four years and worked as a Residence Don for two. Renison became my home away from home and the residents and staff, my family. I have been lucky to be able to stay in touch with many friends from Renison and continue to grow our friendships. Living, working and studying at Renison gave me the chance to see and be a part of many of the programs and services offered through Renison and the University of Waterloo. I met a lot of great people that work hard to make these programs successful and beneficial to the students.
I was always willing to help out when needed. It gave me the opportunity to help others and meet new people. I have always believed in giving back and helping when you can. I am very active in my community doing a variety of volunteer work. Helping others and giving back is part of what I liked about being a Residence Don. I was able to take an active role in student life at Renison and I really enjoyed giving back my time and energy to the college that gave it to me when I needed it.
When I graduated, I lived in Waterloo for a year and was able to stay connected with Renison. When I got married and moved away I was no longer able to donate my time to Renison so I started donating my money. I was always raised to give some of my hard-earned money back to different organizations that mean something to me. I have always donated to my local church and to Guiding and Scouting. It just seemed natural to me to donate to Renison to help support the programs and services offered.
I now live in Alberta and on a trip home to Ontario this summer I was able to visit Renison and see all the changes. It was such a surreal experience. It was wonderful to see lots of familiar faces and meet many new ones. It is amazing how much has changed but yet remains the same. It still has the same feeling of home and family. It makes me happy to know that the money I have been able to donate to Renison has helped move the college forward, but continues to maintain the same supportive and welcoming atmosphere that makes Renison unique. I am excited to see what Renison has in the plans for the future. I am sure that generous donations from alumni like myself will help make those plans a reality.