(SAULT STE. MARIE, ON – June 18, 2020): This past weekend, Algoma University celebrated the academic achievements of its graduating students in a unique and interactive Class of 2020 Virtual Celebration. A first for Algoma, this online event included student, staff and faculty videos, speeches, well wishes, memories and lasting connections as the university highlighted student success.
The event was not intended to replace a traditional Convocation ceremony, but rather served as a means to connect staff, faculty, students, their families, alumni and others to share in congratulating the Class of 2020 in a fun and less formal setting. A traditional convocation ceremony will be held when it is safe for our communities to come together.
Distinguished special guests Dr. Roberta Bondar and MPP Ross Romano, an Algoma University graduate and current Minister of Training and Colleges, surprised graduates with personal messages of encouragement and inspiration.
Anusha Kunasingam earned the Governor General’s Silver Medal for exceptional academic achievement in an undergraduate program. Established in 1873, the medal is one of the most prestigious awards that can be received by a student in a Canadian educational institution. The Silver Medal is awarded to the undergraduate student who achieves the highest academic standing upon graduation with distinction from a Bachelor’s degree program. Anusha has earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology [Honours] and a minor in Psychology, Cum Laude [with distinction].
“On behalf of Algoma University, we extend a hearty congratulations to the Class of 2020!” said President and Vice-Chancellor Asima Vezina. “Though the circumstances in which we find ourselves this year are not what we expected, our students have shown exceptional resilience and tenacity! To our students: as I reflect on everything you’ve accomplished during your time at Algoma, I am deeply touched by how you have all shown your strength of character and spirit; you are truly all Thunderbirds. You are strong, you are powerful, and you are resilient. I can’t wait until we can celebrate your achievements in person- Congratulations Class of 2020.”
Algoma University has created a tradition to send graduates off each year with a word pairing reflective of their shared experience. This year, the pairing was: RESILIENT. AYAAKWAAMIIWIN, which is an Anishinaabemowin word meaning “to be carefully prepared for and to handle any obstacle.”
To view the 45-minute celebration, please visit our website here. A full list of graduates is listed near the end of the celebration video and available here. Details on future in-person Convocation ceremonies in Sault Ste. Marie, Brampton and Timmins will be released when details are finalized.