News at the University of New Brunswick

12 UNB students become newest Sir Howard Douglas Scholars

Author: Communications

Posted on Mar 20, 2012

Category: UNB Saint John , UNB Fredericton

Involvement in their university and community, plus excellent grades, have earned 12 University of New Brunswick students the distinction of being inducted into the Sir Howard Douglas Society.

The award recipients volunteer their time and talent in a number of ways, both locally and internationally, and are all dean’s list students.

“Our students are the problem solvers of today and tomorrow,” said UNB President Eddy Campbell. “The Sir Howard Douglas Scholars are a shining example of what can be achieved through dedication, compassion, and a willingness to help others. At an early stage in their lives, these students are already making a difference.”

Nominated by their faculties, the scholars must have completed two years of their bachelor’s degree program, achieved academic excellence and actively participated in co-curricular or extracurricular activities.  Recipients are inducted into the Sir Howard Douglas Society of Scholars.

At a dinner in their honour, the 2012 scholars were addressed by UNB alumnus Gerry Pond, chairman of Mariner Partners Inc.

Members of the Sir Howard Douglas Society have the opportunity to participate in special university events and become part of a network of outstanding students. As the honour society grows each year, newmembers will have the opportunity to meet and interact with past recipients of the Sir Howard Douglas Award.

Born in Scotland, Sir Howard Douglas served as lieutenant-governor of New Brunswick from 1823 to 1831. During his term, heencouraged development, sought support for native peoples, improved communications and promoted education. Sir Howard was a founder and the first chancellor of King’s College Fredericton, predecessor to UNB.

Established in 2006, the Sir Howard Douglas Society of Scholars has 138 members including this year’s inductees.

UNB’s 2012 Sir Howard Douglas Scholars are:

Cody Alderson, Westville, N.S., Bachelor of Science (Biology-Math), UNB Fredericton, is committed to helping his fellow students have a positive university experience. He has taken on a number of student leadership roles at UNB, including peermentor, co-organizer of the Neville-Jones House bed push, and chair of the Board of Proctors.  In 2010 - 11, Cody received the UNB Residential Life Community Leadership Award.

Michelle Bendrich, Fredericton, N.B., Bachelor of Science in Engineering (Chemical), UNB Fredericton, knows the importance of being involved in university life and has made it her mission to encourage as many students as possible to take part in activities, both on and off campus.  For her part, Michelle holds seats on a number of committees within the faculty of engineering, including, the Engineering Undergraduate Society and the Chemical Engineering Undergraduate Society.

Eima Hajizadeh, Rothesay, N.B., Bachelor of Arts, Honours in Psychology, UNB Saint John, is giving back to her community and to the university. She volunteers her time and conversation to patients at the Saint John Regional Hospital. On campus, she is president of the Psychology Society, vice-president of the Student Volunteer Unit and president of the Campus Association of Bahá’i Studies.

Allan Kember, Summerside, P.E.I., Bachelor of Science in Engineering (Mechanical), UNB Fredericton, is making a difference at home and abroad. Internationally, his work as a missionary took him to Zambia where he worked with a team of villagers to build a frame for a ferry.

Nicholas LeBlanc, Moncton, N.B., Bachelor of Science in Engineering (Civil), UNB Fredericton, has been putting his engineering training to good use. Seeing a need for a more efficient approach to building affordable houses, Nicholas developed standardized housing designs for Fredericton’s Habitat for Humanity, allowing Habitat to build more houses at a lower cost. Academically, his engineering insights have garnered him several Atlantic and Canadian engineering awards.

Saira Mahmud, Moncton, N.B., Bachelor of Nursing, UNB Fredericton, has a vested interest in the health and well being of people. She is a health promotion coordinator for the Moncton area Relay for Life and volunteers with the Canadian Red Cross Meals on Wheels program.  Saira studies nursing on the Moncton campus and is a member of the UNB Moncton Nursing Society. In 2009, she placed second in the Monique Begin Nursing Advancement Award Competition with her topic Power Politics and Change in Nursing.

Devin O’Brien, Saint John, N.B., Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology, UNB Fredericton, has the goal of becoming a heart surgeon and knows the importance of physical activity to a healthy lifestyle. He is a Kin Kids leader and healthy living mentor, working with children to help them develop social skills and adopt a healthy way of living. His role as the UNB’s Women’s Volleyball athletic trainer and his volunteer work in a cardiac unit, are preparing him for his future in the health profession.

Russell Pollard, Kingston, N.S., Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership Studies, UNB Fredericton, wants to empower youth so that they can affect change.  He is a member of Youth Matters Network, a group of young people who organize forums and participate in policy discussions. Last spring, Russell travelled to Bhutan where he was part of an internship group who developed an activity-based leadership education workshop for the region’s high school students. 

Eric Rideout, Fredericton, N.B., Bachelor of Science, Honours in Biology, UNB Fredericton, is motivated by his desire to have a positive impact on the lives of others. He volunteers in a rehabilitation unit and has organized day camps for youth in aboriginal communities throughout New Brunswick. He also worked in Belize as a doctor’s aid in a local hospital and raised funds to provide children in three Belizian villages with a month supply of vitamins.

Amy Shannon, Saint John, N.B., Bachelor of Arts, Honours in Psychology, UNB Saint John, has a passion for helping people. She is a member of the Best Buddies Saint John chapter, mentors students at Hazen-White/St. Francis School, is a UNB Orientation leader, and volunteers with the Saint John Branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.

Emma Sumner, Fredericton, N.B., Bachelor of Science, Honours in Biology and Chemistry, UNB Fredericton, is making her mark on the world. She was part of a group that travelled to Tanzania to supply free medical care to some of the country’s most vulnerable citizens, she volunteers in both the pediatrics ward and Veterans Health Unit at her local hospital, and she is an executive member of Engineers Without Borders.

Catherine Wilson, Sundre, A.B., Bachelor of Science in Engineering (Civil) and Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership Studies, UNB Fredericton, has her sights set on international development. She is a member of the UNB Chapter of Engineers Without Borders, was part of a grass-roots conservation initiative in her native country of South Africa, and has been a member of UNB’s African Students’ Union where she helped African students adjust to life in Canada.


For more information, contact: 

Jennifer Gavin
UNB Communications & Marketing