Spotlight: 2023 Sharon Lamont Student Award winners

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

The Library is delighted to spotlight this year’s Sharon Lamont Student Award winners, Zoya Randhawa and Claire Reynolds. This is the second year the award is being given out to two students who have worked at the Library and have, through extracurricular involvement, supported equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives. 

Stuart and Sharon Lamont, Claire Reynolds, Zoya RandhawaBoth Zoya, a third-year English student, and Claire, a fourth-year anthropology student, began working at the Library in 2022 with the Collections Maintenance team. For each, the Library has been a place of community and support, especially during the pandemic. Through the encouragement of library staff, Claire has been able to take on additional responsibilities, such as working with the Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre on their book collection; and Zoya had the opportunity to transition her part-time role into a co-op experience, where she was able to expand her duties and develop her problem-solving and customer service skills.  

While at Waterloo, both Zoya and Claire were looking for other ways they could contribute to the campus community, to help make it a more inclusive space for all. Zoya volunteered with the WUSA Women’s Centre, starting out as the literature director before stepping into the coordinator role. In this position, she helped initiate support for equal access to menstruation products on campus, securing funding for a pilot project to provide free products in the Student Life Centre. As a member of Alpha Omicron Pi, Claire took on the role of President of the Waterloo Panhellenic Association, working with the national council to update the rules and bylaws governing sororities to be more inclusive and welcoming for all women and non-binary folks.  

The Library holds special meaning to Zoya and Claire so receiving this award was a wonderful surprise. For Claire, the financial support this award provides directly impacted the next steps in her future career goals: “I’m going on a dig in Jordan this summer so the news that I received this award came at just the right time. The experience I will gain with this project will help me to pursue my master's degree.” For Zoya, who has one more year until graduation, the money is going towards tuition and her future plans: “The Library has always been my go-to space to get involved in the community. And now, having worked at the Library, the sense of support and resources it provides people is inspiring my future career goal to become a librarian.” 

The Sharon Lamont Student Award was established with a generous gift by long-time library staff member and retiree Sharon Lamont. It opens annually for applications in the Winter term. 

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