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Dean Gilliam outside 3M facilityCo-op Rising Star recipient Dean Gilliam, fourth-year business co-op student, completed a 12-month marketing internship at 3M in London.

Students and partners honoured for excellence in experiential learning

After a year when a global pandemic forced organizations to make hard decisions about hiring and bringing students on board, the offices of Co-op & Workplace Partnerships and Career Development & Experiential Learning are honouring participants who overcame these challenges.

“Last March, we held our breath as some of our long-standing employer partners were forced to cancel or reduce placements, but we feel grateful that so many organizations were able to successfully pivot and continue to recruit students and offer opportunities for them to work safely,” says Kristen Morris, manager of co-operative education and workplace partnerships.

“At a time when we know budgets and time are tight, as organizations continue to deal with the uncertainties of COVID-19, we feel that more than ever it is important to recognize the deserving students who persevered and our employer partners for their dedication to continuing to provide quality opportunities to students.”

Career Development & Experiential Learning Award winners are:

Mackenzie Stanley, former community needs assessment assistant at the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, who is receiving the Rising Star Student Award – VIP-CSL, recognizing one Volunteer Internship Program-Community Service Learning student each year who has experienced personal growth while making a positive impact in the local community, and who has done an exemplary job of representing the program within the broader community;

Canadian Transportation Museum and Heritage Village, which is receiving the Community Partner Award as an organization which has had a long-standing partnership with the University of Windsor, has consistently supported VIP-CSL student placements, and has created exceptional experiential opportunities through the year.

Co-operative Education & Workplace Partnerships Award winners are:

Dean Gilliam, business co-op student and former marketing intern at 3M Canada; Andrew Ng, engineering co-op student who spent a year overseas at the Schaeffler Group in Germany; and Khushbu Nakum, Master of Applied Computer student and former technical systems analyst at RBC Canada; are all receiving the Rising Star Student Award – Co-op/Internship, for making a unique contribution in the workplace and doing an exemplary job of representing the Cooperative Education and Workplace Partnerships department within the broader community; Mosaic and Bridging North America are each receiving New Employer Co-op/Internship Employer Awards for hiring more than 10 students throughout 2020 in one discipline or more, being actively engaged with on-campus activities to the benefit of student learning, and having created exceptional work term experiences throughout the year;

Nokia, CIBC, and Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority, all recognized with the Co-op/Internship Employers of the Year Award, for meeting criteria which includes a long-standing partnership with the University, having hired more than 10 students throughout 2020, actively engaging with on-campus activities to the benefit of student learning, and having created exceptional work term experiences throughout the year.

UWindsor’s own Office of Open Learning won the first-ever Unsung Hero of 2020 in recognition of the University of Windsor department or faculty that met one or more of the following criteria: having hired more than 10 students throughout 2020 in one discipline or more, having efficiently transitioned from in-person to virtual work term experiences to help provide a consistent learning opportunity for students, and having created exceptional work term experiences throughout the year.

“Partnerships truly enrich and strengthen our communities. Learning together allows innovation to flourish providing valued mentoring of the next generation of leaders,” said Judy Bornais, executive director of the Office of Experiential Learning. “Significant contributions to the economic, environmental, social and cultural development of the region is enhanced through partnerships and collaboration with the private and not-for-profit sector.

“We are proud, UWindsor Proud, of the 2020 Student Award recipients for their continued excellence and ambassadorship. It is also with a tremendous amount of gratitude that we acknowledge and celebrate our employer recipients for their support and commitment to student learning.”