2015 Recipients of CIBC Youthvision Scholarship:
Source CIBC Scholarship
|Saher Aslam||Mississauga, Ontario|
|Yaye Balde||Vancouver, British Columbia|
|Olivia Blevins||Barrie, Ontario|
|Olivia Blizzard||Fredricton, New Brunswick|
|Vea Katrina Capiral||Toronto, Ontario|
|Sydney Clayton||Toronto, Ontario|
|Madison Stokely||St. Thomas, Ontario|
|Amelia Coull||St. Catharines, Ontario|
|Angelica Coull||St. Catharines, Ontario|
|Michael Cross||St. Catharines, Ontario|
|Brandon DeSousa||Thorold, Ontario|
|Neala Edward||Scarborough, Ontario|
|Gabriella Ekman||Collingwood, Ontario|
|Quade Howald||Sudbury, Ontario|
|Shannon Humm||Burlington, Ontario|
|Bethany Jantz||Edmonton, Alberta|
|Chedi Mbaga||Toronto, Ontario|
|Preston Reed McInnis||Tecumseh, Ontario|
|Rheign Venisse Morales||Toronto, Ontario|
|Maryam Niaz Muhammad||Hamilton, Ontario|
|Donna Pham||Vancouver, British Columbia|
|Madison Pirie||Duncan, British Columbia|
|Kishan R**||Toronto, Ontario|
|Sangida Rahman||Toronto, Ontario|
|Shivani Sharma||Burnaby, British Columbia|
|Amy Speers||St. Thomas, Ontario|
|Sheena Stachura||Yorkton, Saskatchewan|
|Michelle Tyacke||Langley, British Columbia|
|Luca Whittaker Camaiani||Vancouver, British Columbia|
|Ananya Xavier||Scarborough, Ontario|
** Full name withheld by request
CIBC Youthvision, CIBC’s flagship education program, has been recognized by Imagine Canada as an outstanding partnership between the business and voluntary sectors.
Recognizing and Encouraging Potential
The CIBC Youthvision Scholarship Program Selection Committee selects 30 recipients each year. Each applicant is evaluated based on academic transcripts and input provided by a mentor, Big Brother or Big Sister, and a caseworker or YMCA youth workerThe Selection Committee also considers a candidate’s involvement in extra-curricular activities at home, at school and in the community, and their future aspirations. Universities Canada administers this program on behalf of CIBC.
This program is rooted in research that shows early intervention, combined with mentoring, are integral to academic and career success. A look back showed that most graduate recipients of the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship Program have gone on to continue or attain higher levels of education beyond their undergraduate or college degree. Many parents talk about the incredible relief the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship provided, giving their children a feasible avenue to post-secondary education that otherwise would not have been possible, or that otherwise would have been riddled with both parental and student debt.
Meet a Graduate
“There are a lot of scholarships out there, but this one is amazing because it pays a portion of tuition and includes a paid internship. The work helped me build a resume and get a job faster. It’s a game changer.”
Jennifer Atwell received the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship in 2001. She went on to receive an honours degree in Psychology from the University of Western Ontario and upon graduation became a Program Coordinator for the Big Big Brothers Big Sisters of Toronto.
“I wanted to go to university, but it wasn’t within my family’s means to save for me to go. I was always worried about loans and financing,” said Jennifer, remembering the worries that were a constant part of her earlier student life.
Fortunately, her Big Sister from Big Brothers Big Sisters of London helped her apply for the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship. “The award was a real gift that meant I didn’t have to worry about financing my way through university. I could concentrate on studying and getting the best grades,” said Jennifer.
“The fact that total strangers at a bank cared enough about the community to create Youthvision has really shaped the way I see people. I have always been drawn to the helping fields, like social work, but my experience with the CIBC Youthvision has influenced me to reciprocate and contribute to the wellbeing of others in my community now, as an adult.”
“Talk about a kick-start. The Youthvision scholarship opened my eyes to endless possibilities, motivated me to reach my true potential and let me know that there are people who genuinely care about the underdog.”
Liam LaTouche received the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship in 2001 and graduated in 2007 from the University of Western Ontario with an Honours Bachelor of Science Specialization in Kinesiology. Liam speaks positively about the comprehensive nature of the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship Program and the significant impact it had on his life.
From the beginning of their relationship, Liam’s Big Brother played a pivotal role in every stage of his life. “My mentor taught me the value of honesty and integrity. He has always been someone I can turn to for advice and has helped me understand my worth. We are still very involved in one another’s lives and consider each other to be family,” says Liam.
Through the summer internships at the Scarborough YMCA, Liam gained professional experience within the fitness industry, which he credits for building his confidence, leadership and interpersonal skills. Liam also expanded his network and built lasting relationships with people who were influential in coaching him as he pursued a career in the health and fitness industry.
Today, Liam owns and operates a business in the health and fitness industry. Liam’s academic and professional aspirations are still evolving. He is in the process of applying to Physical Therapy programs at several universities in the hopes of pursuing his dream of working as a physiotherapist with the ultimate career goal of opening a comprehensive, revolutionary wellness facility.
“I could have never foreseen it at the time, but the scholarship opened me up to opportunity after opportunity for personal and professional growth. I am so grateful to have been one of the very lucky recipients of the scholarship program.”
“If you would have asked me in grade 9, do you think that you are going to get this scholarship; do you think that you are going to be valedictorian, captain of the cheerleading squad and one of the principal roles in your high school play, I would have laughed. The scholarship was definitely a catalyst. It was the little light bulb that went off – I can reach the goals that I thought were only dreams.”
Ijeoma Emesowum received the CIBC Youthvision Scholarship in 2002 and graduated in 2008 from the University of Windsor with a Bachelor of Fine Arts.
Through the summer internships, Ijeoma had the opportunity to work at YMCA summer camps, which she credits with developing her organization, cooperation and teamwork skills. Ijeoma also speaks highly of her relationship with her mentor, who she says provided invaluable support and encouragement as she pursued her post-secondary education. “My Big Sister isn’t just a mentor. I consider her to be my sister, part of my family. She was always there to give an encouraging word and she was always someone I could look to for support.”