Faculty of Humanities celebrates "leaders of today and tomorrow"

By Erica Balch , February 15, 2017
    (From left) Dean of Humanities KenCruikshank, McMaster President Patrick Deane, and McMaster alumna and Executive Director of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, Diana Weir, present students with a range of academic and research awards at the Faculty of Humanities 36th Annual Award Assembly, held recently in Convocation Hall.

More than 250 Humanities students, faculty, family and friends, gathered recently in Convocation Hall for the Faculty of Humanities 36th Annual Award Assembly.

During the ceremony, over 160 academic and research awards were presented to students from all disciplines across the Faculty of Humanities. About 230 students who were named to the Deans’ Honour List were also recognized.

Student award recipient, Sadaf Rahmanian, spoke during the ceremony.

Student award recipient, Sadaf Rahmanian, spoke during the ceremony.

Dean of Humanities, Ken Cruikshank, offered congratulations to all awards recipients, commending them for their hard work and commitment to excellence.

“You are the leaders of today and tomorrow,” said Cruikshank. “The passionate, tolerant and rational agents of change that communities here and around the world so desperately need. I am proud to share in this celebration of achievement, and of promise."

Sadaf Rahmanian, a fourth year student in the Honours Cognitive Science Program and recipient of an Undergraduate Student Research Award (USRA), spoke to the audience about the impact the USRA– an award that provides undergraduate students with an opportunity to participate in research – has had on her, both personally and academically.

“Applying for an undergraduate research award was a defining moment in my undergraduate career. Research wasn’t what I had planned – I came to McMaster expecting to become a speech therapist – but straying away from my plans ended up being one of the best decisions I’ve made," said Rahmanian who worked under the supervision of Victor Kuperman, an associate professor in the Department of Linguistics and Languages, to complete her project which was funded by a  Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) grant and focused on spelling and reading fluency.

The ceremony also featured guest speaker and distinguished McMaster alumna, Diana Weir who was recently named Executive Director of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra and holds a degree in music and cultural studies, as well as a piano performance by Kate Garcia, a student in School of the Arts and the winner of the Reginald Bedford Award for Excellence in Piano Playing.

A range of academic and research awards were presented at the ceremony including in-course awards, grants, community contribution awards, departmental awards, scholarships, and Faculty awards and prizes.