University of Regina celebrates 42nd Spring Convocation

News Release Release Date: June 1, 2016 9:00 a.m.

The University of Regina’s 42nd annual spring convocation on June 1, 2 and 3 will celebrate the outstanding achievements of its newest graduates at the Conexus Arts Centre in Regina, starting at 2 p.m. each day.

This spring 2,162 students will graduate making it the largest convocation in the history of the University. The number of University of Regina alumni now totals more than 68,000.

In all, 17 students will be presented with awards for academic excellence and commitment to community service.

The University of Regina's President's Medal is awarded at each Convocation to a student receiving a first degree who has shown academic excellence as well as major leadership in, and commitment to, extra-curricular activities. The recipient of the medal for the 2016 Spring Convocation is  Avnee Paranjape who is graduating today with two degrees; a Bachelor of Arts Honours in English and a Bachelor of Science in Biology.

Paranjape graduates with a CGPA of 87.7 per cent. Earning the President’s Medal in two very different disciplines exemplifies the University’s commitment to interdisciplinary scholarship. Paranjape has an impressive list of accomplishments. She has earned a place on the Dean’s Honours List every semester since her second year, earned a 90 per cent on an Honours paper and shared her findings at an international conference – a rare accomplishment for an undergraduate student. One of her instructors ranks her in the top 1 per cent of students she’s ever taught in her two-decade career of teaching.

In addition to her impressive and significant academic achievements, Paranjape has also shown exemplary service to the University community since her first year. She has served as treasurer of the University of Regina World Vision club, a judge for the 2012 Shumiatcher Cup debate, and for several years was a University Ambassador. Paranjape has also been co-president and held two directorships with Engineers Without Borders, a role that brought her into conversation with local Members of Parliament to discuss Canadian foreign aid assistance. Her contributions to campus political life continued as lead organizer and moderator for the Get Out and Vote campaign, for which she organized three candidate forums.

Paranjape has also devoted countless hours to enhancing Regina’s cultural life. She served as a board member for the Saskatchewan Book Awards and volunteered with the Regina Association of Middle Eastern Dance and the Regina Folk Festival. She has raised funds for important organizations including the Alzheimer’s Society of Saskatchewan, the Kidney Foundation, the Canadian Diabetes Association, and the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

In recognition of her accomplishments Paranjape has received a major scholarship from the University of Toronto to start studies toward a Master of Arts degree.

The recipient of the Governor General's Academic Gold Medal, which recognizes the most outstanding academic performance of a graduate student, is Dr. Xiaoli Li, who graduates with a Doctor of Philosophy in Petroleum Systems Engineering. She has been the recipient of numerous graduate scholarships and awards, including being awarded a Government Award for Outstanding Students Abroad from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Canada.

The Governor General's Academic Silver Medal is awarded to the undergraduate student who achieves the highest academic standing in a bachelor's degree program. The recipient is Lenard Paul Arnold who earns a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) with Great Distinction, and a major in Accounting. In addition to his BBA degree, Arnold is also receiving a Certificate in Economics with Distinction from the Faculty of Arts.

Additional student award winners who demonstrated high academic achievement and a deep commitment to their community are:

Lenard Paul Arnold – Leon Goldman Scholarship

Raquel Renee Bellefleur – Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation Prize

Kyla Jean Collins – University Prize in Kinesiology and Health Studies

Katherine Mckenzie Cotter – Faculty of Nursing/Saskatchewan  Polytechnic Deans’ Medal

Jennifer Lynn Dmitruk – University Prize in Social Work

Caleb Vaughn Friedrick – Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan Gold Medal in Engineering

Caleb Vaughn Friedrick – Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science Dean’s Medal

Kristen Leanne Gray – Faculty of Science Dean’s Medal

Miranda Ashley Gudereit – S.E Stewart Award in Arts

Amy Myrra Hahto – Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association Gold Medal for Excellence in Clinical Practice

Shina Jane Hom – W.A. Riddell Award in Media, Art, and Performance

Zachary Kyle Horvath – University Prize in Science

Amira Anwar Muftah – University Medal

Avnee Raman Paranjape – Faculty of Arts Dean’s Medal

Teresa Marie Puglia – Faculty of Media, Art, and Performance Dean’s Medal

Brenda Faye Thiessen – Faculty of Business Administration Dean’s Medal

Michelle Vera Wall – Bachelor of Education After Degree (BEAD) Convocation Prize