Three to receive student leadership awards this spring


Three McMaster students will each receive a President's Award of Excellence in Student Leadership during their graduating ceremonies at the Spring Convocations. Arun Gupta, Sachin Aggarwal and Eric Tam were selected from among 12 candidates to be recognized for their leadership contributions during their time at the University.

A graduate of the honours biology and psychology program, Arun Gupta has an impressive record of assuming responsibilities both at McMaster and in the wider community. He has been actively involved in the Science Society, serving for two terms as its president, and has also been newsletter editor and Web page co-ordinator. He's been involved in Welcome Week events and volunteered as an upper-year buddy for the McMaster Science Mentor Program. He has also volunteered at the McMaster-Chedoke Hospital, the Rygiel Homes for the mentally disabled, and at Hess Street School, where he tutors second-language children in English.

A Dean's Honour List science student, Gupta tutors in the first-year Introductory Psychology class, and students consistently rate his work high in the areas of initiative, reliability and responsibility.

Biochemistry graduate Sachin Aggarwal is being recognized for fostering a renewed sense of campus spirit. He is a founding member of the revived McMaster Maroons Society and held the position of senior vice-president from 1999 to spring 2000. As chair of the MSU Millennium Committee, he worked successfully to involve various university departments, persuading them to pool resources and work together on this special event.

During his first year, Aggarwal won a McMaster Students Union (MSU) bi-election for science representative on the Student Representative Assembly, a seat he held in each of his three years at McMaster. He has been a member of a number of MSU committees, and has been both vice-chair of the Student Academic Council and associate vice- president of MSU-University Affairs.

During his second year, Aggarwal organized a three-day Creating Leadership Among Youth leadership conference that attracted high school students from all over the province. Other community involvement includes volunteering at the Chedoke Hospital's infant care program, and as a team member for St. Johns Ambulance and as a coach for the Dalewood elementary school basketball team.

Eric Tam graduates with a combine honours degree in Arts & Science and philosophy. One of the two nominees for a Rhodes Scholarship, he has been involved in McMaster community life as an elected representative, peer helper and teaching assistant.

He served for two years as an elected undergraduate representative on the University's Board of Governors and, most recently, was speaker of the Student Representative Assembly and chaired a number of its committees.

From 1997 to 1998, Tam acted as production manager for the Silhouette. He is also a founding member of the student monthly magazine, Incite, created to promote social and community issues, politics, student culture and the arts.

He has been a teaching assistant for two history courses and a writing clinic tutor, and is the recipient of the Gary Lautens Memorial Scholarship for Journalism in 1997, 1998 and 1999.