ICA and our Board of Directors would like to congratulate the 2016 Diversity Scholarship recipients! Congratulations to Amalee Danister for receiving a $1000 scholarship in the undergraduate category and Mehdi Hashemi for receiving a $1000 scholarship in the graduate category. Each year ICA receives scholarship applications from students who exemplify inclusivity and diversity within their communities, and we would like to acknowledge all applicants for the incredible work that you do!
Amalee Danister is a full time Business student at Camosun College. She is in her second year of a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Finance/Accounting. Amalee immigrated to Canada in 2011. She was born and raised in Sri Lanka. She was a Primary school Teacher and Indian Dancing Teacher in Sri Lanka. After her marriage, she went to Japan and lived there for 7 years. During her time in Japan, she enjoyed the rich Japanese culture and taught English to Japanese kids. Whenever she gets time, she tries to help her community. She has volunteered at James Bay Community Closet for 1.5 years and now she is a volunteer at Victoria Police department.
Amalee is a single mother of a 7 years old daughter. Her beautiful daughter means everything to her. Her career goal is to become self-sufficient and work in a financial institution as a financial planner.
Mehdi Hashemi was born and raised in Tehran, Iran where he went to high school (2004) and completed a BA degree in Political Science at the Azad University of Tehran (2008). Following his BA, he started a MA in International Relations at the Azad University of Tehran. However, before defending his thesis, he was forced to leave the country and seek asylum Turkey in 2010. After going through the UNHCR resettlement process, Mehdi landed in Canada in April 2012 and joined his family in Victoria, British Columbia. Upon his arrival, he started to learn English at the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria and then at Camosun College. As an ESL student at the college, Mehdi had several awards and accomplishments. He was one of the winners of Diversity (short story) Challenge Award (2013), and his story titled ‘The Only Way to My Dream’ was published in an especial publication by the college named Voices of Diversity. He was also the nominated student speaker for School of Access Annual Awards (2013) and the winner of Annual ESL Student Writer Award (2013).
In 2014, he started his MA in Political Science at the University of Victoria and dedicated his research to issues of identity, integration, and inclusion. Mehdi completed his MA in April 2016, and has just started his PhD in political science at the University of Victoria, and is excited to continue his involvement in the promotion of cultural diversity of his community.