FCT Charitable Foundation Announces Second Annual Scholarship Recipients

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FCT Charitable Foundation Announces Second Annual Scholarship Recipients
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Michelle Antunes

Michelle Antunes

Michelle Antunes is the Corporate Affairs Manager at First Canadian Title (FCT). She has been working with FCT since March 2015. She has a Bachelor of Arts from York University, and a post graduate certificate from Sheridan College.

The FCT Charitable Foundation (FCTCF) announced the five recipients of The Honourable William G. Davis Scholarship Thursday, August 18, 2016, at a celebratory event at the Foundation’s home office. Five successful students were each awarded a $1,000 scholarship to be applied to their post-secondary education.

“Thank you to all of the students who applied to The Honourable William G. Davis Scholarship and to the selection committee members for dedicating their time to this process,” said Michael LeBlanc, chair, FCTCF and chief executive officer, FCT. “We saw an overwhelming number of applicants this year with more than 600 applications, compared to 60 in our first year. The quality of these applications was undeniable. The FCTCF is proud to be able to offer these scholarships to these deserving students, and hope that we can play a small role in their continued success. Congratulations again to the scholarship recipients. We wish you the best of luck during this upcoming school year.”

The 2016 William G. Davis Scholarship recipients (listed in no particular order):

  1. Nichole Reid from St. Vincent, Alberta will be attending the University of Alberta, majoring in education. She volunteers most of her time to a local youth group, where she works with many kids who come from foster and broken homes. Nichole and her husband have actually taken two of the boys in to give them the support they need to attend school, and get proper meals. In February of this year, she volunteered at an orphanage in Guatemala that took care of orphans with HIV, which gave her insight into how lucky we are as Canadians to have a government that supports us and mandates that all children are taken care of and get a proper healthcare and education. She also has dedicated her time to volunteering at youth centres that support aboriginal children near her home – this experience really helped open her eyes on what needs to be done to truly support these communities.
  2. Liam Ma from Milton, Ontario will be attending McGill University in Montreal and is pursuing his Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering degree. Among his many volunteer opportunities (like his Mission of Hope trip to Haiti), Liam is also the founder of IronTalk, which is an organization that provides an opportunity for community members to share their experiences and support one another in dealing with mental health issues. He is also an Executive Member of Free The Children and has been working towards very tangible fundraising goals of building schools and providing for water purification projects in developing countries. In 2016, Liam won the Milton Youth Award for Community Leadership for his work in Haiti and volunteer initiatives.
  3. Zoe Chan from Markham, Ontario will be attending McGill University in Montreal completing a double major in Music and Psychology. She volunteers weekly at a laboratory in Montréal, where she assist at an international brain, memory and sound research facility. She also is a music volunteer at a Montréal Neurological Hospital where she plays music for the many patients. At school, even though she is in a different city than home here in Ontario, Zoe is the Vice President Events for the International Student Ministry where she welcomes international students to McGill, Concordia University and the University of Montréal. She hosts weekly events to help her fellow students become more comfortable with being away from home. Zoe’s goal once done school is to treat neuronal and psychiatric disorders.
  4. Bernice Ho from Markham, Ontario who is studying to become a paediatrician at Queen’s University. Among her volunteer experience, Bernice has volunteered with children at the YMCA, she tutored elementary students in York Region, and was an Art Cart assistance at the Markham Stouffville hospital in the diagnostic imaging wing, where she would draw and colour with the young patients or other children at the hospital with family. She is also a Best Buddy with the Best Buddy Queen’s Chapter that pairs university students with individuals with special needs. She is also the co-founder of the Sick Kids Foundations Club. Bernice founded this club to empower students to become leaders and collaborate together to effect beneficial changes through organizing fundraising and awareness events throughout the year. Bernice is also the co-chair of the Markham Teen Arts Council and the sponsorship coordinator at MEDLife, Queen’s Chapter.
  5. Vincent Nguyen from Edmonton, Alberta will be attending the University of Alberta studying to become a pediatric doctor. He has always had a passion for helping children succeed and grow. And for the past five years has volunteered with the Students for Learning Organization – which assists academically struggling elementary and high school students, as well as underprivileged youth. His mission is to empower youth with the tools to succeed, advocate for underprivileged youth, and tear down the barriers to education. He eventually became president of the non-profit organization and oversaw the allocation of volunteer tutors to schools, organized fundraisers to provide for underprivileged youth, and established a non-profit organization partnership that coordinated joint-events that engaged/inspired vulnerable youth through sports and crafts. He is also a Global Health Researcher with Edmonton WHO, where he collaborates with delegates, professors, and experts to present conferences that educated the public with regards to global health issues.

At this year’s event, the FCTCF welcomed back past scholarship recipient Muluba Habanyama to speak about her story as an HIV advocate. She spoke to the audience of more than 200 employees and special guests about how last year’s scholarship has helped her in her post-secondary journey, where she became valedictorian of her graduating class.

About the Honourable William G. Davis Scholarship Program
The scholarship program is named after The Honourable William G. Davis, the 18th Premier of Ontario, whose passion for education contributed to his work in building Ontario’s community college system. For the past decade, Mr. Davis has served as the Chair of FCT’s board of directors. He also served on the board of directors for FCT’s parent company, First American, from 1997-2013.

Students were asked to fill out an application form, which included their community and volunteer involvement, any extra-curricular activities, and an essay explaining to the committee why they deserve the scholarship. Each application was then reviewed by a panel of teaching professionals who advised the FCTCF on their selections in August 2016. In order to qualify for the scholarships, each recipient must be accepted or currently enrolled at a post-secondary Canadian institution.

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