This holiday season, we’re celebrating donors and their spirit of generosity. Thanks to their generosity, Waterloo students, faculty members and alumni can make their mark on the world. Read on to see 12 reasons why donors give to the Waterloo community.

1. To build a community

As a student, Michael Robson (BA ’13) found support among African, Caribbean and Black student groups. As an alumnus, he’s building a community of giving that rewards students who volunteer with the same student groups that he enjoyed.

2. To support a global mission

When local Rotarians created the Rotary Peace Scholarship Awards, they found a way to support individual students while furthering their peace-building mission. Since 2015, 16 graduate students have received the awards.

3. Because your gifts make a difference

What kind of impact do scholarships and bursaries really have? According to Zaynab Malik, they can open a world of possibility.

My dream to become an optometrist just requires a pinch more work, a touch less sleep, and the kindness of those who generously invest in students.


4. To get involved and stay connected

Katie Lewis (BA ’07) found her true niche working with organizations that improve people’s lives. As an executive member of the Waterloo Region Alumni Chapter, she found yet another way to make an impact and connect with fellow alumni.

5. To remember the past and support the future

Given her passion for helping others, Leah Drost was a fitting first recipient of the Dr. Stanley F. Leavine Scholarship – an award that memorializes the prominent public servant and recognizes students who emulated his character.

6. To prepare students for the world of work

Sara Kannan (BA ’16) didn’t expect her love of writing to result in a job at an engineering firm. But her role as a technical writer strengthened her passion for communications – and inspired her to give back to students.

7. To leave a legacy

As a proud Waterloo alumnus, Karen Wilkinson (BA ’90, MAcc ’90) wanted to support future students. As an accountant, she recognized the impact she could have through a gift in her will.

8. To support the place you call home

After more than 40 years on campus, Tina Roberts (BSc ’80) has created an interesting career and fulfilling life at Waterloo. Inspired by talented students and the effect Waterloo has on the local community, Tina wanted to make her own contribution.

If I’m going to contribute and make a difference in the world I’m living in, then I wanted to start giving to scholarships.

TINA ROBERTS, Alumnus, staff member & donor

9. To give a great experience

Through the Global Citizen Internship Program, Jaclyn Iezzi got the opportunity to work for a non-profit organization – allowing her to gain real-world skill and serve her local community.

10. Because Waterloo is more than academics

Wellness is crucial to academic success – and the student experience in general.  Thanks to donors, Waterloo students have more support than ever to improve their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.

11. To pay it forward

When Joseph Liu (MMath '72, PhD '76) chose to study computer science at Waterloo, his future seemed uncertain. He had never been to Canada before, or used a computer. Today, Joseph celebrates his Waterloo experience with a scholarship for graduate students in the Faculty of Math.

When I met the students – what they told me about how the scholarship has helped them – it was beyond my imagination. I didn’t realize it would make such an impact.

JOSEPH LIU, Alumnus & donor

12. To drive an entrepreneurial mission

For Martin Basiri (MASc ’13), signing the Startup Pledge is a way to commit to his entrepreneurial mission. The co-founder and CEO at Applyboard hope that his future donation will give back to international and entrepreneurial students.