Community Report 2015

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Community Report 2015



Building an even stronger community one future ready graduate at a time Students and learning are at the heart of all we do at Mohawk College. That’s why we’ve put students at the heart of our community report. We’re proud to introduce you to 14 remarkable students who made their mark at Mohawk and in our community during the past year. They’ve set a high bar for the incoming class of 2015-16. Mohawk is educating and serving a record number of students this year from across the region, province and around the world.

RON MCKERLIE’S EVERYDAY HERO: “Vanh Kalong survived five years in a refugee camp before her family made their way to Hamilton. She was 17-years-old when she started Grade 9 and was the first in her family to earn a postsecondary education when she graduated from Mohawk College. Today, Vanh employs more than 70 people as the successful owner of My Thai restaurants in Hamilton, Ancaster, Burlington, Brantford and Waterloo. For her resilience and entrepreneurial spirit, Vanh is my everyday hero and a deserving recipient of a Mohawk Alumni of Distinction award.” See more everyday heroes at

Student portraits by Jessica Tuck, graduate of Mohawk's Creative Photography program. Layout and design assistance by Karen Evans, graduate of Mohawk's Graphic Design program.

All of our students arrive at Mohawk wanting to hear the same two words – “you’re hired.” We’re committed to giving our students the quality education, hands-on experiences and unique opportunities that lead to great jobs and rewarding careers. More than 85 per cent of our students are working within six months of graduating. Our goal is to have the highest graduate employment rate of any college in Ontario. We’re well on our way thanks to a team of outstanding faculty and staff who are dedicated to helping every student realize their potential, achieve their dreams and graduate to success. Mohawk also has more than a thousand partners helping us transform students into job-ready graduates. Our partners offer students invaluable real-world

experiences through co-op work terms, field placements and applied research projects. Our partners generously invest in scholarships, bursaries and new places to learn on our campuses. Our partners help keep our programs relevant and our curriculum current so our students graduate with sought-after skills. Our partners also say those all-important words “you’re hired.” For a college president, the most important words are “thank you.” So thank you to everyone who supports our students and champions our college. Strong partnerships make for success students and future ready graduates. Educating and serving students is a great privilege and a constant source of inspiration. We’re honoured to be your community’s college and we are committed to making this great region an even better place to call home, one Mohawk graduate at a time. Here’s to another great year ahead for our students, our college and our community. Regards, Ron McKerlie President @RonMcKerlie


Luke Baylis AGE: 21 HOMETOWN: Barrie, Ontario PROGRAM: Business - Financial Services (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Financial advisor for high-net-worth clients. Luke finished his year as the top fundraiser in his Financial Services program and the top vote-getter in the Mohawk Students’ Association presidential election. Luke raised $5,400 while his classmates collected an additional $16,600 for Food4Kids, a nonprofit that provides backpacks of healthy food for children with little or no food at home over the weekends. Financial Services students have put their prospecting skills to work and

raised more than $43,000 in two years for Food4Kids. Luke will spend 2015-16 serving as president of the Mohawk Students’ Association, representing all full and part-time students and managing an operating budget of more than $6.5 million. The MSA offers a full range of services including an online used textbook sale, emergency loans, legal counselling, health and dental insurance and a food bank.

MY EVERYDAY HERO AT MOHAWK: “Professor Christine DiCarlo challenges students constantly but is always there for support. I would not be the person I am today if not for Christine’s influence. She is a role model and the reason I got involved with student government and leadership.”

Six Ways to Make a Difference at Mohawk College

Invest in a scholarship or bursary for a student

Offer a student on-the-job experience with a co-op work term or field placement

Put students to work on an applied research, capstone or community project

To connect with Mohawk contact Meaghan Drury at or call 905-575-1212 ext. 3719

Invest in new places and better spaces for students to learn on campus

Share your expertise on a program advisory committee

Hire a future ready Mohawk graduate


Amanda McManus AGE: 26 HOMETOWN: Grimsby, Ontario PROGRAM: Health, Wellness and Fitness CAREER GOAL: Start a nonprofit that promotes wellness, exercise and mental health. Amanda wore out her running shoes this summer raising awareness and money for mental health. While on her year-long co-op with the Integrated Health and Wellness Department at ArcelorMittal Dofasco, Amanda walked 400 kilometres over 10 days from the base of the CN Tower to the steps of Parliament Hill. At Mohawk, Amanda launched a club to offer fitness, nutrition and wellness

services to students while also serving as a student leader with Mental Health in Motion. Launched in early 2015 by a team of students, faculty and staff, Mental Health in Motion aims to break down the stigma surrounding mental health and connect students with the resources and supports available at the college and in the community.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “My everyday heroes are Health, Wellness and Fitness professor Nick Petrella and Co-op specialist Trent Jarvis. Through Nick I have learned that it’s possible to stand up for what you believe in and I am grateful for Trent’s support of my Hiking for Happiness project this summer.”


Tyler Manns AGE: 20 HOMETOWN: Binbrook, Ontario PROGRAM: Construction Engineering Technician – Building Renovation (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Own and operate a renovation company. Tyler learned more than how to build and renovate homes while studying at Mohawk’s Stoney Creek campus for skilled trades. The recipient of the 2015 Hamilton Halton Homebuilders Association Award learned what it takes to build and run his own contracting business. Tyler and his classmates also helped build a stronger community through a first-of-its-kind partnership with the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF).

Mohawk is the first college in Ontario to work with the OTF on annual community building projects with nonprofits. The OTF provides the funding and Mohawk students and faculty supply the labour. Crews of Mohawk students have carried out major renovations at the Old Firehall Arts Centre in Ancaster, Delta United Church in east Hamilton and Indwell in the city’s north end.

MY EVERYDAY HERO AT MOHAWK: “My everyday hero is Building and Renovation professor Brad MacDonald. Brad helped me a lot during my time at Mohawk, kept our classes interesting and fun, and helped me start my own company.”

“To get ahead of a looming skills shortage and stay a North American leader in steel fabrication, Walters has worked with Mohawk College to offer a Mechanical Techniques Welding and Fabrication certificate program. Through our collaborative program, students learn and earn by studying at Mohawk’s Stoney Creek campus and working two days a week at our plant doing structural steel fitting. We also have a significant number of Mohawk technology graduates in our corporate office in Hamilton working on major construction projects with clients from across North America.” Marty Verhey Human Resources Manager, Walters Inc. Hamilton


Megan Bomberry AGE: 23 HOMETOWN: Six Nations of the Grand River Territory PROGRAM: Business - Marketing CAREER GOAL: Earn a Masters in Fine Arts and open an authentic native crafting company. Most students go to Mohawk to get hired. Megan’s at Mohawk to create her own job and build her own business fuelled by her passion for the arts. Megan, the recipient of the Aboriginal Education and Student Services’ Sara Smith Award and the Amos Key Jr. Award, is one of more than 400 Aboriginal students studying at Mohawk College. Megan is also a regular visitor to the Aboriginal Centre and Lounge at

Mohawk’s Fennell Campus. An illuminated floor to ceiling Wampum Wall welcomes everyone looking for a place to socialize and study. Students can also sign up for workshops, get peer tutoring and meet with Elders at the centre. Proudly hanging in the centre is a Friendship Wampum Belt presented earlier this year by long-time educational partner Six Nations Polytechnic.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “Mark Valvasori is an outstanding professor who teaches the way I learn and professor Carol Tristani was very helpful and inspiring during my first semester at Mohawk. The staff at Aboriginal Education Student Services have always been there to help me with anything I am having difficulty with; and Raymond Watkins is a great mentor and good friend who has helped me with our common course work.”

Building pathways between college and university Postsecondary education was once an either-or proposition. You went to college or you went to university. Today, increasing numbers of students are choosing to graduate with the best of both worlds. To save students time and money, Mohawk has negotiated more than 200 articulation agreements with universities across Canada and around the world. Through these agreements, universities recognize credits earned at Mohawk. Mohawk’s newest agreement is with McMaster University. Graduates of Mohawk’s Business Administration advanced diploma program with a weighted grade point average (GPA) of at least 77% (B+) are now eligible to apply for the McMaster Bachelor of Commerce through the DeGroote School of Business. Students are required to have 4U maths or recognized equivalents. Eligible Mohawk graduates will receive 60 credits towards their degree and must complete an additional 60 credits as specified by McMaster. For more on articulation agreements, contact Linda Basso, Pathways Coordinator, Academic Operations, at 905-575-1212 ext. 3775 or


Avery Thomas AGE: 23 HOMETOWN: Grimsby, Ontario PROGRAM: Child and Youth Care (graduate) CAREER GOAL: To work in the field of Child and Youth Mental Health and to earn my Child and Youth Care university degree. Avery had a banner year at Mohawk. She was named Mohawk’s Outstanding Female Athlete after she skipped the women’s varsity curling team to a bronze medal in the provincial championships and a berth in the nationals. For the second year in a row, Avery and her crew earned the Vern Dow Women’s Fair Play Award in recognition of their outstanding sportsmanship during the

provincial championships. Individually, Avery earned a second team all-star award as well as provincial and national all-academic awards. Avery also won the Women’s Fair Play Award at nationals for the second year in a row. Avery graduated with honours and turned her 500-hour placement at the McMaster Children’s Hospital into a job with the hospital’s Child and Youth Mental Health Unit.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “The Child and Youth Worker faculty are my everyday heroes. All of my professors made it very easy to be successful in the program and I admire their efforts in teaching such a diverse group of students. They made me feel comfortable and I knew I was supported and could ask for help whenever I needed it.”

Work out at Mohawk`s award-winning Athletic & Recreation Centre Mohawk’s David Braley Athletic & Recreation Centre is now open to the community. The 64,000 square foot centre, which was awarded a 2014 Athletic Business Facility of Merit award from Athletic Business magazine, features three gymnasiums, a fitness centre, multi-purpose studio and indoor running track along with outdoor basketball and beach volleyball courts. Community memberships are $540 per year plus HST and a monthly payment plan is available. Membership includes group fitness classes with locker rentals and towel service available for a nominal fee. Members park free on weekends and between 6 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays.


Bianca Tonolo AGE: 21 HOMETOWN: Brantford, Ontario PROGRAM: Art and Design Foundations (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Work in the creative arts industry after graduating from Mohawk’s Graphic Design program. Bianca helps make Mohawk a more inclusive college. The recipient of the 2015 Linda Marshall Social Inc. Scholarship, Bianca serves as both a peer wellness worker with Social Inc. and president of the Butterfly Keepers, a support group for students who’ve dealt with suicide or self-injury. Social Inc. opened its doors in January 2013 to

create a safe and inclusive space on campus. Bianca is part of a team that’s welcomed more than 1,500 students, staff and community members. Social Inc. runs year-round awareness campaigns and events, including a sold-out talk in March of 2015 by Laverne Cox in the McIntyre Performing Arts Centre.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “Social Inc. coordinator and Social Services professor Marco Felvus and Louisa Drost, director of Counselling, Accessible Learning and Health Services. Marco and Louisa have both been there for me and have supported me in anything I do. They have motivated me to succeed in my education.”

Learning is just around the corner with Mohawk Mohawk is making it even easier for Hamiltonians to connect with their community college. Through City School by Mohawk, the college is setting up shop in neighbourhoods throughout Hamilton. Mohawk will consult with neighbours to decide what courses, workshops and training to offer. Mohawk opened its doors at The Eva Rothwell Resource Centre in North Hamilton in September 2015 for children, youth, adults and seniors living in the Keith, Sherman, Jamesville, Beasley, Crown Point, Gibson / Landsdale neighbourhoods. City School by Mohawk is part of Mohawk’s ongoing commitment to increase access to postsecondary education for all Hamiltonians.

Future ready. Learning for life... The Eva Rothwell Resource Centre at Robert Land donated a classroom for the first City School by Mohawk location.

For more on City School by Mohawk, please contact Emily Ecker at 905-575-2329 or email


IN 2014-15,

Mohawk educated and served



of our students are the first in their families to earn a postsecondary education

#1 COL

full-time, part-time and apprenticeship students



Student Sa

Aboriginal students


International Students from more than 70 countries


academically at-risk high school students earned dual credits

More than 105,000 students have graduated from Mohawk since the college opened its doors in 1967

85.7% of graduates


30% 46%

of our students arrive at Mohawk directly from high school

of our students have previous postsecondary education

IN 2014-15,

STUDENTS RECEIVED 267 scholarships 383 bursaries


Graduate employment

Graduate satisfaction

^2014-2015 Student Key Performance Indicator (KPI) Student, Graduate

88% of employers report being satisfied or very satisfied with the Mohawk graduates that they’ve hired^

are working within 6 months of graduating^ Students who moved to Hamilton to attend Mohawk generated $36.8 million in new income while graduates generated $1.5 billion in added income.†

Every $1 invested by our students in their Mohawk education generates $3.80 in lifetime income.†

Totalling $481,678 More than half of Mohawk students rely on the Ontario Student Assistance Program and received $54.6 million in grants and loans in 2014-15

Every $1 invested in Mohawk by the provincial government generates $6.50 in added taxes and public sector savings.† † Economic Modeling Specialists Intl 2012-13

One of Canada’s Greenest Employers for two consecutive years

One of Niagara-Hamilton’s Top Employers for two consecutive years

Mohawk is the first college in Ontario to adopt an environmental management plan


3 Campuses


150+ programs






Overall quality of facilities

Overall quality of services

and Employer Satisfaction Surveys.

Stoney Creek Campus

28 certificate programs

88 diploma programs

for Skilled Trades

Institute for Applied Health Sciences at McMaster for Health


apprenticeship programs

Top 5 programs with the most applications in 2014-15: • Child and Youth Worker • Social Service Worker • Pre-health • Bachelor of Science in Nursing • Practical Nursing


post-graduate certificate programs collaborative 8 degree programs

Pathways and Credit Transfer 200 articulation agreements with universities and colleges in Canada and around the world including McMaster, Brock, Wilfrid Laurier and Waterloo

Top 3 revenue sources in 2014-15*

Fennell Campus McKeil School of Business, Technology, Community Services, Preparatory Studies and Communication Arts

More than $90 million in construction and renovation projects have been completed on time, on budget and accident-free at our three campuses since 2010

Class sizes (1st year courses)




$91.1 million

$70.9 million

$13.9 million

Total Revenue: $197.7 million

Top 3 expenditures in 2014-15*

Less than 30 students:

32.8% of courses 30 to 60 students:

$56,820.12 raised for the United Way by students, faculty and staff

Mohawk is the first college in Ontario and second in Canada to be a chapter of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship

Mohawk has hosted the annual Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair – one of Canada’s largest and oldest science fairs – since 2011

Salaries & benefits:

Contracted services:

$118.6 million

$14.6 million

Supplies: $12.4 million

Total Expenditures: $194 million *Complete financials posted at


61 to 100 students:


More then 101 students:



Cory Hansen AGE: 21 HOMETOWN: Paris, Ontario PROGRAM: Advertising and Marketing Communications Management (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Creative director with an advertising agency. Cory helped keep the streak alive for Mohawk College. Cory was part of the student team who won gold at the 2014 Canadian Marketing Association Awards. It’s the seventh gold medal in seven years for Mohawk Advertising students. Mohawk teams also won silver and bronze at Canada’s largest marketing awards event. To date, Mohawk

Advertising students have won 31 CMA awards. While at Mohawk, Cory served as creative director with The Agency, a one-of-a-kind living lab in the McKeil School of Business. Teams of students put their education to work in creating real-world advertising, marketing and public relations campaigns for dozens of nonprofits and start-ups every year.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “I have two. Professor Jef Petrossi introduced me to the world of creative advertising and mentored me through the process of applying for advertising competitions. The other is volleyball coach Matt Schnarr. Without the strong academic program that Matt put in place for his players, I would not have been as dedicated to my program in the beginning and may have never found my passion for creative advertising.”

Students raise profile of nonprofits and start-ups Students in the McKeil School of Business apply what they learn in the classroom to create advertising, marketing and public relations campaigns for nonprofits and entrepreneurs. The Agency at Mohawk brings together faculty-supervised teams of Advertising, Marketing, Public Relations and Graphic Design students to work with clients over the course of a semester. Depending on the project, students from Mohawk’s Journalism, Broadcast Media and Software Development programs may also be brought in to work on campaigns. Clients are selected following a call for proposals in the fall and spring. At the end of the semester, nonprofits and start-ups get agency-quality work while students gain invaluable real world experience and make a difference in the community. To connect with The Agency, email or call 905-575-1212 ext. 4188.


Grace Visser AGE: 19 HOMETOWN: Simcoe, Ontario PROGRAM: Educational Support CAREER GOAL: Work with people who have communication needs, specifically in the field of speech therapy and audiology. Learning by doing is one of the hallmarks of a Mohawk education. Grace, an ABB Inc. Bursary recipient, is putting her education to work by helping a fellow student succeed at Mohawk. During her first semester, Grace served as a mentor and friend to Dagel Lewis, a student in Mohawk’s Community Integration Through Continuing Education (CICE) program. The program offers a college

experience and education to individuals with intellectual disabilities and other learning challenges. As a mentor, Grace helped Dagel make a successful transition to Mohawk. In her final year in the Educational Support Worker program, Grace and her classmates will help CICE students make an equally successful transition back into the community and the workforce.

MY EVERYDAY HERO AT MOHAWK: “Classmate Alyssa Holder has a passion for helping children that is off the charts and she’s great at finding the positive in everything she does. Alyssa makes the time to volunteer while keeping good grades. She is the kind of person I want to become.”

“I’m proud to work at City Hall alongside so many fellow Mohawk College alumni who are committed to serving the citizens of Hamilton. Mohawk graduates, students, faculty and staff are working to make our city the best place in Canada to raise a child, promote innovation, engage citizens and provide diverse economic opportunities.” Mayor Fred Eisenberger Graduate of Mohawk’s Community Planning and Development program (class of 1983)


Jillianne King-Goddard AGE: 22 HOMETOWN: Windsor, Ontario PROGRAM: Journalism CAREER GOAL: Work in public relations for a non-government organization or as a producer of children’s programming. Jillianne is a journalism student with a passion for paying it forward. In 2012, she was admitted to hospital and diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Jillianne became an even more active volunteer in the community as a way to thank everyone who helped her during her recovery and journey to Mohawk. The Ontario Association of Broadcasters presented Jillianne with the 2015 Michael

Monty Scholarship in recognition of her academic excellence and her volunteer work in the community. With the highest key performance indicator scores of any journalism program at an Ontario college, Jillianne and her classmates hone their reporting and storytelling skills in a journalism lab, television studio and radio station and gain invaluable on-the-job experience with industry leaders.

MY EVERYDAY HERO AT MOHAWK: “Alex Baker was the producer for Ignite News at Mohawk. Alex used his resources as a broadcast student to shine the spotlight on underrated local talent while also being an advocate on social media for public awareness and community issues.”

Meeting the needs of employers with customized training Mohawk College Enterprise (MCE) delivers training and workshops to small, medium and large employers. Our industry-experienced trainers work with you to meet your specific workforce development needs and maximize your investment in your people. MCE offers programs in leadership, technology, health and community services. For more information on how MCE can help your business contact: Phone: 905-575-2534 Toll free: 877-269-1422 Email:


Idris Hassan AGE: 30 HOMETOWN: Kitchener, Ontario PROGRAM: Community and Justice Services CAREER GOAL: Work with troubled youth and become a probation officer with the Ministry of Child and Youth Services. Idris looks to add to an impressive resume when he graduates from Mohawk next year. The first recipient of the School of Justice and Wellness Studies Award has already worked as a program coordinator with an HIV / AIDS association in Ethiopia. Idris has also worked as a youth outreach worker, case worker, youth leadership project facilitator and settlement officer. Idris serves on the Mohawk Students’

Association as a director for the School of Community and Urban Studies. Outside of Mohawk, Idris serves on the Somali Canadian Association of Waterloo Region Board of Directors and organizes an annual soccer tournament for the community. Idris is among the 1,200 Justice and Wellness students learning in custom-built space at the Fennell Campus.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “Justice and Wellness Studies professors Marc Laferriere, Michael Pearson and Ed Gies for their dedication to helping every student realize their full potential. Also my good friends Aman Ahmed, Mohamed Momahed, and Ayan Kayd Abdulahi for their encouragement and support every day.”

“L-3 Wescam has built a strong and mutually rewarding partnership with Mohawk College, offering co-op work terms to students and rewarding careers for graduates. Our company is a world leader in the design and manufacturing of stabilized, multi-spectral imaging systems. We count on highly skilled, job-ready graduates to serve our customers, drive innovation, grow our business and sustain our industry leadership. Mohawk consistently delivers.” Roman Turchyn VP Human Resources, L-3 Wescam, Burlington


Ross Mogridge AGE: 28 HOMETOWN: Mount Hope, Ontario PROGRAM: Mechanical Engineering Technology CAREER GOAL: Director of an aerospace company’s additive manufacturing division. No other college or university student in Ontario gets to do what Ross does every day at Mohawk. Ross works with faculty and industry partners in the college’s Additive Manufacturing and Resource Centre (AMRC) at the Fennell Campus. The centre, with two industrial metal 3D printers, is the first of its kind in Ontario and one of only three in Canada. The centre turns digital files into models, prototypes and parts for advanced

manufacturers in automotive, aerospace and healthcare industries. The AMRC, together with the mHealth and eHealth Development and Innovation Centre and Mohawk Energy and Advanced Power Systems Laboratory, are Mohawk’s three centres of excellence in applied research. Ross used his experience in the centre to win the first entrepreneurship award from SURGE, Mohawk’s incubator for student entrepreneurs.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “Dean Tony Thoma and professor Robert Gerritsen. Tony and Robert work tirelessly to perfect the educational experience for Mohawk students so when we graduate, we’ll have the skills and experience to take on roles as leaders and innovators. I would not be where I am today without them and for that I am grateful.”

Applied Research 2014-15






Mohawk students

faculty and staff

industry partners

college and university partners

applied research projects

Together we generated $3.4 million in research income To learn more about partnership opportunities contact Andrea Johnson at or 905-575-1212 ext. 4082


Hyemin Kim AGE: 39 HOMETOWN: Busan, South Korea PROGRAM: Business - Marketing CAREER GOAL: Put my prior work experience and marketing skills to work. Hyemin is helping to welcome other newcomers to Mohawk and Hamilton. As a volunteer with Global Hamilton Connect, Hyemin is strengthening the bonds between international students, young newcomers and the city. The recipient of the college’s 2015 International Student Scholarship of Excellence Award, Hyemin is one of more than 1,200 international students from over 70 countries studying at Mohawk.

In February of 2015, Mohawk president Ron McKerlie launched a year-long project with industry, business, government and education partners to make the college even more welcoming for newcomers and to encourage more students like Hyemin to continue living and working in Hamilton once they graduate. Mohawk will host a Welcoming Communities conference in October and release an action plan in early 2016.

MY EVERYDAY HERO AT MOHAWK: “Linda Epplett, co-ordinator of New Canadian and International Student Services has been my rock in tough times and an inspiration for me time and time again. She is a fantastic guide, mentor and role model.”

Welcoming newcomers to Mohawk and Hamilton As a hub for International information sharing, the Language & Culture Centre at Mohawk’s Fennell Campus offers year-round programs, services, workshops and events that focus on the promotion and exchange of culture and language. These programs and services are for all staff and students at the college including newcomers and students who speak English as their second language. The centre also helps Mohawk’s 1,200 international students integrate into the college and Hamilton community. Programs offered at Mohawk’s International Language & Culture Centre include: • • • • • • For more information about Mohawk’s International Language & Culture Centre, contact Erica Fagan at or 905-575-1212 ext. 4064.

International English language testing English language instruction Culture inclusion and diversity workshops and celebrations Student exchange opportunities for overseas study Foreign language tutoring exchanges Student and staff exchanges with other countries


Maria de Castro Santos De Tina AGE: 37 HOMETOWN: Fortaleza, Brazil PROGRAM: Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Become an accomplished OTA/PTA, helping patients, clients and their families live their lives as fully as possible with a great quality of life. Maria is a new Canadian with a new career. After working as a music teacher in Brazil and earning degrees in music, physiotherapy, and a master of science, Maria moved to Canada in June 2011, and enrolled in Mohawk’s Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant program in 2013. Maria’s work as a student leader and community volunteer was recognized with the Halyna Pierce-Fenn OTA/PTA Award and the

Mohawk College School of Medical Radiation and Allied Health Award. Outside of Mohawk, Maria volunteers with Brain Injury Services. Maria attended the Institute for Applied Health Sciences, a campus shared by Mohawk and McMaster University. The institute is home to Mohawk-McMaster collaborative Nursing and Medical Radiation Sciences programs that consistently earn the highest third party levels of accreditation.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “My professors are my everyday heroes. I would highlight professors Michael Chan, Brooke Malstrom and Adele Martin (former OTA/PTA course coordinator) for their professionalism, ethics and commitment to student learning.”

Grow with us at Mohawk’s community garden Mohawk joined forces with Hamilton Victory Gardens in 2015 to help stock food banks with locally grown fruits and vegetables. Twenty plots at Mohawk’s community garden were tended by volunteers with Hamilton Victory Gardens. The nonprofit team of community volunteers is dedicated to alleviating hunger and food insecurity in our communities by transforming empty city lots into places of community, education and growth. Mohawk now has 47 raised lots and a rainwater harvesting system at its Fennell Campus for students, faculty, staff and college partners. The community garden also includes a farm bed that supplies the Mohawk Students’ Association-run on campus restaurants. The community garden is one of the many projects of Mohawk’s Sustainability Office. To preregister for a plot at Mohawk’s community garden, please email gogreen@mohawkcollege


Lydia Tupper AGE: 20 HOMETOWN: Cayuga, Ontario PROGRAM: Industrial Woodworking Technician (graduate) CAREER GOAL: Head back to Mohawk’s Stoney Creek campus in September to complete the Construction Engineering Technician program. Eventually I would like to teach students woodworking skills and encourage other women to consider careers in non-traditional trades. Lydia made history this year at the largest skilled trades competition in Canada. Lydia became the first woman to win gold in the cabinetmaking category at the 2015 Ontario Technological Skills Competition and also won the award for highest marks for a woman in her trade group. The annual competition features

67 skilled trades and technologies contests, with more than 2,000 competitors from high schools and colleges across Ontario. Mohawk students won two gold, three silver and five bronze medals at the competition, with Mohawk’s Tyler Bukenberger posting the highest grade of any college student.

MY EVERYDAY HEROES AT MOHAWK: “Professors Ken Mercer and Sheri Martin. Ken always saw potential in me and didn’t hesitate to challenge my skills which helped me learn and grow into a better woodworker. And Sheri inspired me with her story. Sheri was in a serious accident when she was a student in the same program. She showed me that no matter what circumstances you’re in, if you really want it, you can do it.”

“Today’s Family Early Learning and Child Care has a long-standing partnership with Mohawk College. As a Mohawk graduate, I know exactly what to expect when fellow alumni join our agency to serve more than 4,000 children and families. Quality programs require quality people and many of our people are highly skilled Mohawk graduates committed to helping children every step of the way.” Marni Flaherty, Graduate of Mohawk’s Early Childhood Education program (class of 1982) Chief Executive Officer, Today’s Family Early Learning and Child Care


Alumni of Distinction Recipients

Mohawk proudly recognizes graduates who make their mark at work and make a difference in our communities. Back row left to right: Derek Doyle, Vanh Kalong, Rocco Passero, Mayor Fred Eisenberger, Honourable Ted McMeekin, M.P.P., Megan MacLeod, Brian Jonker. Front row left to right: Daniel Popowich, Barbara Shea.

Know an outstanding Mohawk grad? Go to