BY BRANDON ROLLO AND NOAH SHEPPARD
On Friday, April 5, over 200 people gathered at the Mississauga Grand Banquet Hall to celebrate the work and achievements of students in Sheridan College’s Athletic Therapy program.
The evening started with dinner and some emotional speeches from faculty as they handed out the awards. The night was upbeat with some comedic moments, like calling a professor to the dancefloor to face off against a student in a limbo competition.
Third-year student Omer Suhrawardy was one of the night’s winners. He took home the CATA Student Leadership Award, as well as the coveted Toronto Blue Jays Sports Medicine Scholarship. Suhrawardy shared how it felt to be recognized.
“I feel quite honoured and humbled to be honest with you. I find myself a little lucky just because a lot of things have to fall in place in order to get that, but with that being said that hard work is something that will get you places,” he said. “I’m not one of those students where I work to get the awards. I put in a body of work that I think needs to be put in to get a job done and if that deserves recognition than I am completely lucky.”
Paul Brisebois, the program coordinator of Sheridan College’s Athletic Therapy, stressed that the event was for the entire program, not just the few winners.
“Today’s always a tricky day for the program because we give out 18-20 awards, but there’s 55 or so students or so in fourth year that all deserve to be recognized, so this is just recognizing a small sample of the program that have been fortunate enough to win these awards,” he said.
Student Emma Pringle echoed Brisebois’ thoughts.
“It’s really nice because we put in really long hours and a lot of us can’t afford to do what we’re doing, but we still do it anyway for the athletes that we work with and for the experience that we gain,” she said. “It’s nice to have a night off where we can all just appreciate the hard work that we’re all putting in and see how far we’ve come and see the successes between all of us.”
Fourth-year-student Alexandra Aiello won the Dr. Bob Jackson Award for her research into an alternative treatment for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS). She had some advice for incoming students.
“Not only just work hard, but take care of yourself. It’s really easy to get lost in the program and just like go go go until all of a sudden, you’re burnt out. And you just need to remember selfcare is super important, it’s just as important as taking care of your athletes. As they say on airplanes, ‘put on your own oxygen mask before you put on someone else’s,’” said Aiello.
2019 Athletic Therapy banquet award winners:
KINEMEDICS AWARD: Robert Paris
OATA 1 and 2: Eleanor Miller and Dana Renfrew
CANADA BASKETBALL: Samantha Brownlee
TORONTO BLUE JAYS SPORTS MEDICINE SCHOLARSHIP: Omer Suhrawardy
DR. TAYLOR AWARD: Jennifer Love
DR. MICHAEL REIERSON AWARD OF EXCELLENCE: Alice Sobiesiak
EVB MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP: Dana Renfrew
NATIONAL BALLET OF CANADA: Whitney Gallant
CATA Student Leadership Award: Omer Suhrawardy
TOM FRIED AWARD: Monika Cule and Craig Cuizon
RAPTORS 905 Internship: Lacey Purdy
MICHELLE KUKTA MEMORIAL AWARD: Shaunice Terrelonge
LOI QUACH MEMORIAL: Wade Sadoway
ROBERT FIRTH MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP: Meagan Anstruther
Dr. BOB JACKSON: Alexandra Aiello
ANNE HARTLEY Award of Excellence: Meagan Anstruther and Spencer Dungey