Maryam Akhtar KhanMaryam Akhtar Khan, Program Assistant, LEAD Pakistan. BES '12 Geography

Environmentalist, advocate and mentor; Maryam Akhtar Kham is working to create social change in Pakistan. Combining her passion for environmental sustainability and interest in social justice initiatives, she is striving to bring attention to these issues in her Pakistani community.

Maryam is a Program Assistant for LEAD Pakistan (Leadership for Environment and Development), a non-governmental organization in Pakistan focused on improving sustainable development in the country. In this role, she presents updates and policy briefs to the Federal Government related to food and water security in the context of climate change.

Outside her day to day work, Maryam is also working to end shadism and racism in her community, working with other local activists on a campaign called Dark is Lovely. She also collaborates with local universities and colleges, as well as federal authorities and civil groups to draw attention to workplace harassment against women, coordinating educational sessions to spread awareness and increase tolerance.

A true mentor at heart, Maryam continues to speak with University of Waterloo students considering The Green Program in Iceland. As a former participant, Maryam spent time at Reykjavik University developing skills to evaluate social and environmental feasibility of energy projects. 

Majoring in Geography and Environmental Management, Maryam graduated with a Bachelor of Environmental Studies in 2013. She spent time working as a teaching assistant and graduated on the Dean’s honours list. In 2014 Maryam was nominated for the Young Alumni Award.