“You have changed my life”: Kirsten's Story

Friday, January 31, 2020

Kirsten and her dog, near the plaque with Eva Leflar's name on it. "This award has changed my life. I have nothing but sincere gratitude and hope that you understand the immense impact you have made not only on my life in university, but the opportunities you have afforded me that will follow me the rest of my life." - Kirsten

Renison has many exceptional students, it is difficult to pick just one to feature in a newsletter. Kirsten Wirkunnen, now in her final semester of a 4-year Social Development Studies degree, chose Renison because of the atmosphere. Coming from a small town, Kirsten was intimidated by the thought of attending university at a large school with classes containing hundreds of students. Renison was the perfect fit, with smaller classes and a community atmosphere. Finances were a big consideration, and Kirsten received a scholarship each year of her studies.

Kirsten will soon move on to continue her education and pursue a teaching degree, though she says that leaving the community of Renison is bittersweet. The impact of Renison can be heard in her own words, “I have said it before, and I will say it again, you have changed my life. I was able to plant roots in an amazing community that I hope to call my home for years to come.”

You can make a difference in the life of a Renison student like Kirsten by donating to the new 60x60 Fund. This fund, named in honour of Renison's 60th anniversary, supports students in three ways:

  1. Student research fund : supports a stipend to assist students who are conducting primary research under the supervision of Renison faculty.
  2. Non-profit co-op placement: supports the co-op placement of a Social Development Studies (SDS) Co-op student working in the non-profit sector.
  3. Renison student priority fund: supports the greatest current needs of our students – such as tuition for single parents returning to school, traditionally marginalized groups, refugee students and other pressing needs.

To learn more, visit Renison.ca/support, or contact Cort Egan, Director External Relations and Communications.

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