May's Volunteers of the Month
Debbie Fan and Maggie Mai
Debbie Fan and Maggie Mai are Group Facilitators with the International Peer Community (IPC). They have done a fantastic job creating a sense of community within their group through planning a variety of activities. Some highlights include taking their group to the Kitchener Colour Vibe 5K Run, spending a day in downtown Toronto at the Harbour Front, and visiting Canada’s Wonderland.
Congratulations on being the volunteers of the month Debbie and Maggie! We appreciate your commitment and enthusiasm.
Past Volunteer of the Month features
March 2017 - Lian Hickey
Lian Hickey is a Group Facilitator with the International Peer Community (IPC). She went above and beyond this month to support all of the participants in her group. Together with her co-facilitator Ritika, they planned a colourful month of activities that included rock climbing, working out at the gym, individual check-ins, and cooking an Indian meal. She also helped set-up and make students feel welcome at the End of Term Community Event.
Lian, congratulations on being the volunteer of the month and thanks for all your efforts to support IPC!
February 2017 - Mahak Sharma and Shaked Waismark
Mahak Sharma and Shaked Waismark are Group Facilitators with the International Peer Community. Their dedication and enthusiasm in group and during events has made a huge difference in building a sense of community. In particular, they pay special attention to the concerns of every student in their group, maintain regular communication with everyone, and plan awesome events.
Thank you both for being great role models and friends to IPC participants. Congratulations on being the volunteers of the month!
January 2017 - Katrine Led
Katrine Led is a Group Facilitator with the International Peer Community and is a Masters student in Civil and Environmental Engineering. From the beginning, Katrine has been enthusiastic to support the transition of international students to Waterloo. In her role as Group Facilitator, she fosters a sense of community and belonging within her group and, along with her facilitation partner Yvonne, she has planned events for her group members to get to know one another. Katrine’s biggest strength is her friendly and approachable attitude, which allows her to connect with her group members.
Thank you for sharing your time with the International Peer Community Katrine and congratulations on being Volunteer of the Month!
November 2016 - Ritika Bhargo
Ritika Bhargo is a volunteer group facilitator with the International Peer Community. During this term she has made students feel comfortable and welcomed, and she went above and beyond in organizing the End of Term Celebration. Ritika took a leadership role in assisting her Community Leader with event preparation and set up. She also actively engaged students during the event. Ritika will return to the international peer community in Winter 2017 in the same role.
Ritika, we are very happy to have you back! Congratulations on being Volunteer of the Month.
October 2016 - Bushra Rahman and James Xin
Bushra Rahman and James Xin are facilitators with the International Peer Community. They are both 3A students studying International Development. Despite having a busy October, they worked well together to create the best experiences for their students. For example, they organized a Thanksgiving dinner where they cooked for their entire group and hosted a games night afterwards. Towards the end of the month Bushra and James also supported their Community Leader by sharing event ideas and helping with event logistics for their Community Halloween social event.
Bushra and James, congratulations on being the Volunteers of the Month!
September 2016 - Helen Peng and Simon Liu
Helen Peng and Simon Liu are facilitators with the International Peer Community. They have been exemplary mentors to their students in September. In their first group activity, they played board games and shared their experiences about university life, co-op, and getting involved on campus. They also participated in the East Asian Festival during Reunion Weekend and helped one of their students set up Instagram and Snapchat accounts. In addition, they took initiative to help their Community Leader set up the monthly community event.
Congratulations on being our Volunteers of the Month! Keep up the great work!
July 2016 - Aaron Leung and Candy Lee
Aaron Leung and Candy Lee are facilitators with the International Peer Community. They have consistently planned meaningful activities for their group throughout the term. They even organized a surprise birthday celebration for one of their students! In July, Aaron and Candy won the inaugural End of Term IPC Scavenger Hunt by completing the most tasks.
Aaron and Candy will be returning to their volunteer roles in the fall term. We are lucky to have you both. Keep up the good work!
June 2016 - Cathy Zhang and Jahanzeb Meghani
Cathy and Jahanzeb are Group Facilitators with the International Peer Community. They have done a tremendous job taking their students to a variety of on- and off-campus events in the month of June. They also displayed great team work by having regular meetings between themselves to discuss the best way of helping their group members.
Thank you both for leading by example!
May 2016 - Connie Lan and Vaidehi Chavan
Connie and Vaidehi are Group Facilitators with the International Peer Community program this term. They have been consistently innovative in planning their weekly events and providing mentorship to their students. Some of the most memorable events they have done with their students include a trip to St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market and a group Study session.
Connie and Vaidehi, we appreciate your commitment, initiative, leadership and thoughtfulness. Keep up the good work!
April 2016 - Vincent (Can) Cui
Vincent was a Graduate Volunteer for the International Peer Community during the winter term. Vincent's passion and enthusiasm for international student programming has earned him the title of Volunteer of the Month for April. His commitment to the International Peer Community beams through every event that he plans as well as every interaction he has with our international student population.
March 2016 - Rebecca Lin and Keira Soutar
Rebecca Lin and Keira Soutar have been instrumental in ensuring that March's Community event went without a hitch! Keira planned a fun and engaging trip to Toronto even though she was unable to attend the event. Rebecca was able to take the lead and successfully facilitate the event for our students. Both volunteers have continued to show support for the IPC program and are therefore being recognized together!
February 2016 - Maria Pham
Maria is a Group Facilitator with the International Peer Community Program this term.
Maria is an enthusiastic and hardworking facilitator who has taken her volunteer position to the next level! Maria has been supporting not only her Community Leader, but has perfected her time management skills to balance her studies and her commitment to the participants of the program.
Maria – we look forward to watching you grow as a leader this term and moving forward! Congratulations on being selected Volunteer of the Month!
January 2016 - Alanna Wilson
Alanna is a Group Facilitator with the International Peer Community for the Winter 2016 term.
Alanna has proven to be a dedicated volunteer who takes initiative within her community. Alanna not only ensures that the logistics of events are executed flawlessly, but she also goes out of her way to assist her Community Leader with organizing and coordinating larger events.
Congratulations on your nomination and win as January's Volunteer of the Month, Alanna!
April 2015 - Emily Sutherland
Arts and Business student Emily Sutherland is our April Volunteer of the Month.
March 2015 - Erin Reid
Meet Erin Reid, our March Volunteer of the Month. Erin is in her 1B term from Applied Health Sciences. She joined the English Conversation Partner volunteer program to help international students feel comfortable practicing English and learn Canadian culture. Erin aspires to develop a better appreciation for cultures other than her own.
So far my experience as an English Conversation Partner has been a very positive one! I have two eager partners who are a pleasure to work with. I am finding that I have learned just as much - if not more - from them, in terms of their culture, values and views of Canada, as I have taught them English. One thing that we did together outside of our regular conversation meet-ups was see a hockey game. It was both of my partners' first time being in an arena and seeing hockey. As a hockey player myself it was an eye-opening experience to see their amazement at not only the ice rink but when the Zamboni came out!
To help them understand what was happening during the game, I had them read a "Beginner's Guide to Hockey" document that I made (with the help of the Internet of course) prior to our trip to CIF. When we were at the game, I had a vocabulary sheet with pictures so they could practice the words and connect it to what was happening in the game, what to call the equipment, etc. It was a fun way to practice new vocabulary while learning about a classic Canadian sport. They really seemed to enjoy the day - and the best part was that it was a free activity! Both of them even got to have their own puck as a keepsake from the game.
- Erin Reid
February 2015 - Farrah Chow
Farrah Chow is a third-year Therapeutic Recreation student in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences at UWaterloo. She joined the English Conversation Partner Volunteer Program because she wanted to help ease the transition of international students into their campus community. Her volunteer experience reflects the essence of building a welcoming and diverse community for all students.
I can't believe January flew right by and it's already been a month since I met my English Conversation Partner, Yuer from China. Being born in Canada, it was a great opportunity to learn more about her hometown and culture, and to teach and show her about Canadian culture.
It wasn't long before we both realized that we had similar interests in not only our academic studies but also recreation activities. We often had long discussions on our psychology courses - it was easy talking to her about my minor in psychology when she's doing a major in psychology! I feel that I am able to learn from her just as much as she learns from me.
I took Yuer to a couple of on-campus events including Winter Welcome Week's Winter Wonderland and Burst Your Bubble's Games Night. At the Federation of Students-run event, we took photo booth pictures together, saw the ice sculpture, and our highlight of the night was drinking juice from a glass made of ice! At Games Night, we played Scrabble and it was a great board game for Yuer to practice her English skills. I think she really enjoyed learning more about student life on campus and exploring what services our student body has to offer.
I think the best meetings I've had with Yuer were the ones where I was able to sit down in a quiet place and have a conversation with her. We were both able to open up to each other about problems we face throughout our university experience as well as our goals for the future. The best moment was when Yuer told me that it was her first time opening up and sharing her thoughts and experiences to someone in English.
I am looking
forward to getting to know her more and continuing our weekly meetings. We have already planned to go to a local restaurant this weekend to further explore Canadian culture!
- Farrah Chow