Georgian ignites passion to help students at fundraising gala

When Paul Dyck decided to launch into a new career, one of the realities he faced entering Georgian’s Marine Engineering Technology program was how to cover all the related costs.

His burden was eased through the support he found through donor-funded scholarships and other financial assistance available at Georgian.

I’ve been the beneficiary of several of your gracious awards and I can say they’ve helped me immeasurably. They’ve put safety boots on my feet, safety glasses on my face and helped pay for the medical training I need to get on ship and pursue my dream.

– Paul Dyck, Marine Engineering Technology student

Dyck, who is set to graduate in 2024, expressed his immense gratitude for the support he received in a video he made aboard a ship on the Panama Canal during a work experience for school. The video was shown at Georgian’s Ignite the Night: An Unrivaled Gala Experience presented by BMO.

Gala in support of students brings together 300 people

The event, held at Casino Rama Resort on Nov. 3, brought together 300 members of the Georgian community, including sponsors, donors and friends, to raise funds to help students like Dyck.

The volunteer gala committee was co-chaired by two Georgian graduates: Ali Khonsari (class of 1997), who is a past chair of Georgian’s Board of Governors, and Addison Wallwin (classes of 2015 and 2019).

Three people dressed formally hold up an oversized cheque for $410,000.
Georgian graduates and gala co-chairs Ali Khonsari (class of 1997), left, and Addison Wallwin (classes of 2015 and 2019) present a cheque for $410,000 to Georgian President and CEO Kevin Weaver.

$410,000 raised to ‘help make dreams come true’

A total of $410,000 was raised and will go toward scholarships, awards and bursaries, as well as the Georgian Food Locker, which provides emergency groceries to students in need. The goal of raising $25,000 for the student food bank was matched, dollar for dollar, by gala sponsor belairdirect and was exceeded quickly that evening thanks to generous donors.

“Awards, scholarships and bursaries open doors, create access and help make dreams come true. Every day, I see the difference that donor support has on our students and the Georgian experience,” said Kevin Weaver, President and CEO, Georgian College. “I want to thank all of our guests, sponsors, donors and volunteers for their generous support of Georgian and helping us deliver truly unrivaled experiences.”

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