Sparks team member Neha Puri with Julie Nguyen.

uWaterloo student founds youth engagement organization

Julie Nguyen, a second-year Biotechnology/Chartered Accountancy student, has been involved in her community for as long as she can remember. It comes as no surprise then that in February 2012, Julie founded Sparks Youth Enrichment Group to educate and introduce students to local opportunities, and to empower them to reach their maximum potential.

With the guidance of mentors and support from her friends and family, Julie has been able to start closing the gap between high school students and the many opportunities available to them. Sparks facilitates two annual events; an Opportunities Fair that invites organizations to showcase their volunteer, scholarship, and enrichment programs to students; and the Illuminate All Girls Conference in co-operation with the Because I am a Girl campaign.

Julie says, “It’s really a great feeling knowing that you are contributing to the developments of others, even if it’s just a minor stepping stone.”

She is currently working to bring Sparks Youth Enrichment Group together with several similar organizations to create a larger network that students can access to find opportunities in their communities.

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