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____ Friday January 8, 2015 ____



SHAD Alumni Continue to Shine in 2015

Waterloo - SHADs who completed one of Canada’s most prestigious programs and joined a community dedicated to helping high achieving high school students reach their full potential have selected the addition of three more Rhodes Scholars to their ranks as the top SHAD news story of 2015.

James Flynn of St. John’s, NL who established Code NL to enhance computer literacy in Newfoundland, Kaleem Hawa of Toronto, ON, the son of a refugee from Lebanon, and Zia Saleh of Edmonton, AB, who hopes to bring different experts together to help with International Development initiatives, bring to 30 the number of SHAD alumni who have become Rhodes Scholars.

2015 was another impressive year for SHADs which made the internal vote among SHAD alumni for top 15 news stories for 2015 a difficult choice.

2015 demonstrated the impact SHADs have in their communities in Canada and beyond.

SHAD President Barry Bisson says, “When you look at this list of SHAD alumni achievements, you see just how important it is we invest in our best and brightest young people the way SHAD is doing to help SHADs make this kind of global impact. In 2016, our hope is to increase awareness and accessibility of SHAD so more and more of Canada’s top students are able to reap these same rewards.”


Other honourees for top 15 SHAD news story of 2015 include SHAD '14, Tiffany Quon of Vancouver, BC and SHAD '14, Rishabh Nag of Mississauga, ON. They were recipients of the Vimy Pilgrimage Award and were given the chance to study Canada's tremendous First World War effort during a week-long educational program in Vimy, France.

SHAD '03, Michele Romanow, of Toronto, ON, became a Dragon on CBC's Dragon's Den in 2015. At only 29 and a serial entrepreneur, Romanow is the youngest Dragon to ever join one of CBC’s most popular television series.

SHAD '10, Rameez Virji of Calgary, AB, spoke at Calgary's WeDay. In front of 16,000 youth, Virji shared his story about the creation of a pill that can be used for vaccinations instead of needles. He is awaiting patent approval to use the method which he believes will help save lives in the developing world. He won a Top 20 Under 20 Award in part for this work which began initially with his group at SHAD where they devised a flu vaccination pill.

SHAD '14, Alex Gillis, of Halifax, NS, co-founder and CEO of, won the Startup Canada National Young Entrepreneur Award. Bitness uses smart phone technology to collect real time information for retailers.

Six SHADs were named among the Top 20 Under 20 in 2015. This includes SHAD '13, Nivatha Balendra of Montreal, QC, SHAD '14, Clement Cheng of Markham, ON, SHAD '13, Anjali Katta of Vancouver, BC, SHAD '12, Maike van Niekerk of Halifax, NS, SHAD '14, Xi Yuan (Cecilia) Pang of Surrey, BC, and SHAD '12, Maxwell Tran of Mississauga, ON who all received this award that honours the next generation of young leaders who are creating positive change.

Three SHAD alumni were named Loran Scholars: SHAD '14, Jenna D’Aurizio of Oakville, ON, SHAD '14, Hannah Lank of Winnipeg, MB, and SHAD '14, Darcy Taylor of St. John’s, NL. The three are recipients of Canada's largest undergraduate merit award valued at up to $100K, over four years.

SHAD ’98 Todd Reichert of Ottawa, ON, set a new World Human Powered Speed Record and made news headlines around the world going close to 140 kph on his human powered bike. See the record-breaking run.

SHAD '14, Austin Wang of Vancouver, BC, won the top prize, Best Project Award, among countless other accolades including Platinum Award - Best Senior Project and the Manning Innovation Achievement Award at Canada-Wide Science Fair. His project “A Novel Method to Identify Genes in Electron Transfer of Exoelectrogens” identified genes in bacteria that are responsible for generating power in a microbial fuel cell, shedding light on how the biology of these systems work.

SHAD '04, Devon Galloway's company, Vidyard received $18 million in funding to meet growing demand for its video marketing technology. Galloway is from St. Jacob’s, ON.

SHAD '99, Tony Brijpaul's Miovision, a leading innovator and provider of intelligent traffic data management, secured $30M in funding in 2015. Miovision uses its technology to reduce commute times. Brijpaul is from Waterloo, ON.

SHAD ’14, Selina Shivji of White Rock, BC, received Canada’s Governor General’s Caring Canadian Citizen Award. The award recognizes individuals who volunteer their time to help others and to build a smarter and more caring nation. Shivji was recognized at WE Day Vancouver and invited on stage in front of 20,000 youth.

SHAD '02, Gaurav Jain of Mississauga, ON, was named one of Forbes' Top 30 Under 30 in Venture Capital. As an early product manager for Google’s android platform, Jain won the Founders Award, Google’s top prize for employees. Now he’s focused on investment as a principal for the Founder Collective.

Seven SHAD alumni were named Schulich Leaders: SHAD '14, Melissa Cusack Striepe of Mount Albert, ON, SHAD '14, Mary Kathleen Hickox of Stratford, PE, SHAD '14, Rika Sugimoto Dimitrova of White Rock, BC, SHAD '13, Manpreet Deol of Vancouver, BC, SHAD '13, Min Ji Kim of Saint John, NB, SHAD '14, Madeline Shred of Nanaimo, BC, and SHAD '14, Ella Rasmussen of Oakville, ON were selected from a pool of 1,250 nominees and receive the prestigious scholarships to pursue studies in STEM fields at top Canadian universities.

Four SHAD alumni are named Next 36: SHAD '08, Adam Hueniken of Chatham, ON, SHAD '10, Taylor Quinn of Halifax, NS, SHAD '09, Joshua Segeren of Chatham, ON, and SHAD '11, James Sun of Toronto, ON are selected for this program that strives to grow Canada’s long-term prosperity by fast-tracking the development of the country’s most talented young innovators.

SHAD '09, Derek Jouppi of Guelph, ON and his team Suncayr won a $25,000 prize at the Velocity Fund Finals. Suncayr aims to prevent pesky sunburns via their UV responsive indicator. Suncayr has also won many additional competitions and awards in 2015 including Ontario Engineering Competition (Innovative Design) 1st place, Canadian Engineering Competition (Innovative Design) 1st place, Baylis Medical Capstone Award, AC Jumpstart, and NASDAQ Entrepreneurship Award. Suncayr has raised $151,000 cash and $191,000 in kind / reimbursements for a total of over $300,000.

SHAD '10, Max Brodie's Kaizena, an online platform, raised $900K in seed funding to bring “good change” to students worldwide. Brodie is from Kelowna, BC. Kaizena's mission is scaling high quality feedback on student work. After students finish a draft of an essay or project, they use Kaizena to request feedback from peers and teachers.

SHAD '13, Cindy Kao of Richmond Hill, ON, received the 2015 Celebrating Student Success award, an honour highlighting York Region District School Board students who achieve success each day.

SHAD '14, Lovdeep Singh and SHAD '14, Cecilia Pang, both from Surrey, BC, were honoured with Service Above Self Surrey Youth (“SASSY”) awards, awarded to youth making a difference in their communities by demonstrating “Service Above Self”.

Two female SHAD alumni are among the first recipients of University of Waterloo’s HeForShe IMPACT scholarships. SHAD '13, Anya Forestell and SHAD '14, Anqi Yang were awarded $12,000 scholarships which support ongoing efforts to achieve comprehensive, long-term and sustainable gender equality.

Two SHAD alumni, SHAD ’14 Jonathan Chow of Ottawa, ON and SHAD '14, Malini Hu of Richmond Hill, ON made it to the finals of Young Entrepreneur's Make Your Pitch competition, a two-minute video pitch challenge with online public voting and expert judges’ scores. Hu went on to be named one of the six final winners.


SHAD '14, Jonathan Chow, received the Mayor’s City Builder Award from the City of Ottawa recognizing his role as a volunteer, fundraiser, innovator and role model for youth

SHAD '10, Tara Gholami of Calgary, AB, became the first recipient of the Order of the White Rose Scholarship, a $30,000 scholarship established by the École Polytechnique and awarded to a female graduate student of engineering. The school, renowned for its engineering and science programs, established the scholarship to pay tribute to the victims and families of what has become known as the Montreal Massacre.

SHAD '05, Joshua Liu's SeamlessMD was the recipient of the SHAD Angel Network's second investment. SeamlessMD is bringing technology to the health care field and is now in place in several hospitals in Canada. It provides a solution on smartphones, tablets and computers to guide patients through surgery while enabling healthcare providers to keep an eye on their patients outside the hospital. Liu is from Toronto, ON.

SHAD '13, Chloé St. Amand of Pembroke, ON won the Outstanding Student Citizenship award, recognizing responsibility, scholarship, citizenship, leadership and effort from the town of Petawawa.

SHAD '13, Divya Santhanam of Mississauga, ON and SHAD '14, Hannah Lank of Winnipeg, MB, are named 2015 Global Citizen Scholarship recipients. The pair received trips to Paris, Tolouse and finally, Barcelona where they participated in EF’s Leadership & Innovation summit, meeting many change makers just like themselves.

SHAD '14, Justin Low’s team competed against 129 secondary school and university teams from 22 countries across the world, at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) Innovation and Entrepreneurship Global Student Challenge, receiving the Bronze Award for third place in the world and the Theme Award for Environment and Sustainability. Low is from Vancouver, BC.

SHAD '14, Andy Samman of Halifax, NS, won 2nd place in the Canadian National French Essay contest, hosted by French for the Future.

SHAD '12, Alice (Xia) Zhu of Toronto, ON, was chosen as a student delegate from the University of Toronto to attend the Paris Climate Summit, COP21, hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Zhu and five other delegates from her university hosted rallies and campaigns at the negotiations to represent their generation in tackling climate change, and engaged Canadians back home through their videos, blogs, and research.

SHAD ’15, Jessica Wei of Markham, ON, became concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra. Jessica was also named the Dave Black Award for Excellence in Innovation and Entrepreneurship winner for SHAD 2015. This award was created by the Black family in 2001 to honour SHADs who display greatness during their time at SHAD and leave a lasting imprint on their fellow SHADs. Wei was selected for her outstanding leadership, impressive aptitude for entrepreneurship and profound teamwork.

“As you can see from this list, it was another fantastic year for SHAD alumni,” says SHAD President Bisson. He adds, “We look forward to more of the same in 2016.”

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