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Reflections from Loran Scholars

Sara Napier, President & CEO, United Way Halifax

“Loran has given me the opportunity to speak with incredible young people who are thoughtful, principled, and excited to grow in their leadership and community contribution. I am endlessly impressed and inspired by the character, empathy, and vision they all bring to the table, and in turn the massive, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for growth the Loran Award generously provides. Meeting and mentoring young people truly touches my heart, and knowing that Loran is committed to long-term support and growth of values-driven leaders is an incredible gift to the future of humanity.”

Mike Johnston, CEO, REDspace Inc. & Loran Board Chair

“I have served Loran in almost every volunteer role available for over 20 years, and each has brought me joy. With my volunteer and philanthropic pursuits, I’ve always been drawn to causes that foster potential, and Loran has proven successful at identifying and unlocking the potential of young Canadians who are capable of transforming our country for the better. Loran is a force multiplier for good, and I am grateful to play a part in its work.”

Naomi Gichungu, The Northpine Foundation

“The Loran Scholars Foundation is a remarkable opportunity for young impact leaders who are committed to making a difference in their communities, and an initiative that mirrors our vision at the Northpine Foundation. Like Loran, we invest in future paths of high impact and understand the exponential power of a strong, supportive network that collaborates to tackle societal challenges at scale. We hope our investment will support these exceptional individuals as they continue their collective efforts and spark transformative change in our shared vision of a better world.“

Naomi Azrieli, OC, The Azrieli Foundation

“Canada needs Loran—and if the Azrieli Foundation can make an impact by supporting these students in partnership with Loran, we’re very proud to play that role. We consider education to be the most important factor in empowering not only individuals but whole communities; it’s how we move forward as a unified society. Loran’s focus on finding and strengthening leaders of character means that an investment in Loran is an investment in potential, not only in young people but in our country and our global society.”

Rod & Robin MacLennan

“As some of Loran’s founding selections interviewers, we’ve been delighted to see so many exceptional young people from the East Coast apply for the Loran Award, be identified and nurtured, and ultimately commit to reinvesting their talents back into our community. We have donated to Loran for over 25 years because we’ve seen first-hand the real-world impact that Loran Scholars go on to make. It really pays off in the long term.”

Susan Scace 

“The Loran Scholars Foundation is crucial for Canada. It allows our best students to study here in Canada during their undergraduate years while providing them with the opportunities they need to grow and develop as leaders.”

Sabrina Akmal, BMO Capital Markets

“With Loran, we share organizational commitments to ensuring our communities are strengthened through a diversity of voices, experiences, and perspectives. Our partnership gets stronger, year after year, due to the commitment of both organizations to support and better young people’s lives.”

John and Marcy McCall MacBain, McCall MacBain Foundation

“We need strong, dedicated, and creative leadership to achieve positive outcomes. As Loran Scholars, young Canadians have the opportunity to learn, take meaningful risks, and determine how they can best contribute to society. By looking at their character, willingness to learn from failure, and genuine aspirations, Loran is able to discover young people with tremendous potential for a life of leadership and service.”

Jean and Sylvie Chagnon, Lallemand

“Philanthropy is not a choice, it is a duty. We firmly believe that education is the key to a better future, and it is for this reason that we support the Loran Scholars Foundation.”

Charles Achampong, Vice President, International Partnerships, Mitacs

“As a Loran board member, interviewer, and business leader who has hired alumni of the program, I am continually inspired and energized by the incredible talent, ambition, and dedication I see in Loran Scholars. Engaging with these exceptional young individuals not only enriches my own understanding of the world but also allows me to learn from their resilience, innovation, and drive.”

Louise Chagnon-Buchiet, President of Board of Directors, Festival Bach de Montreal

“Serving as a Loran interviewer and mentor is important to me because it gives me the opportunity to support and guide promising young Canadian students in their educational and personal growth. Interacting with these exceptional young individuals inspires me and keeps me connected to the aspirations and ambitions of the next generation.”

Judy Whitford, Indigenous Language and Culture Coordinator, Yellowknife Catholic School Board

“Hearing the stories and experiences of our youth is inspiring. It makes me commit to being part of a program and process that provides opportunities to further develop their skills, gifts, and talents. I believe my contribution to Loran is valuable because it is important for our youth to see themselves at every step in the interview process – a shared commonality is how we find place and belonging.”

Paul Larocque, President & CEO, Arts Umbrella

“From my first day of interviewing back in 2003, I was hooked. I remember calling someone immediately afterwards saying, ’I just had the most remarkable, inspirational day.’  Now more than ever, our world is truly in the hands of our youngest citizens, and given everything we are experiencing, we look to them with so much expectation. Loran volunteers, therefore, have a unique and powerful opportunity to make a difference in Canada and the world by finding and nurturing the promise of character in young Canadians.”

Patti Pon, President & CEO, Calgary Arts Development

“Loran is a unique organization because it is not just about a scholarship—it’s very much about connecting and creating a community of changemakers. My involvement with Loran leaves me feeling inspired and hopeful because I can see that there are so many amazing young people in our country who want to make a difference. Serving as a Loran interviewer restores my faith in people.”

Rafael Escalante Franco

“As a future legal expert with visions of challenging and reassessing inequitable legal structures, my research experience has prepared me to diligently understand the complexity of issues embedded within certain communities. Loran inspires me to let empathy and determination guide my future undertakings. Through the support of my fellow scholars, mentor, and Loran community members, I know that I have all the tools I need to make my future goals reality.”

Sofie Fournier

“Loran inspires me to be the change I want to see and to take initiative, even in new and perhaps uncomfortable environments. I was dissatisfied with the systems in place and pursued an active role in student advocacy during my first year of undegrad, including reforming the university’s sexual violence services and resources for students.“

Kyran Alikamik

“Becoming a Loran Scholar has shown me the possibilities of meaningful leadership in effectuating lasting change, and helped bring to light what personally imbues my everyday life with a sense of purpose. I’m passionate about showing other Inuit, among other Indigenous people, the value of breaking cycles and taking charge of one’s educational path, and I seek to elevate my community by being a positive role model.“

Emma Harris

“Joining the Loran community has given me plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the future of our world. I have been inspired to give back to my community through Sprouts, a volunteer-run food cooperative with multiple programs that combat food insecurity on campus. Food security has been a passion of mine for nearly a decade, and it is because of Loran, and their commitment to giving back to the community, that I am able to continue this work in British Columbia. The people I have met through my work with Sprouts Cafe and Community Fridge Initiatives make me strive for a world in which food security is something attainable for all. I’m passionate about creating and living in communities that foster care, and I actively seek to elevate my community by being unapologetically myself.“

Kayleigh Bowes

“The Loran community has enabled me to see things through new perspectives and challenge my limits. I’m passionate about food insecurity, youth mental health, and social entrepreneurship, so I actively serve my community, planning and running programming, offering skill-building workshops, and working one-on-one with youth to inspire them to reach their full potential. I am driven to build up those around me and provide local youth with the tools and resources they need to succeed in whatever areas they are passionate about, as well as letting them know that it’s okay to ask for help when needed.“

Kevin Wang

“Building a welcoming and supportive community has always been a key passion of mine because I believe that strong communities have the power to do great good in the world. As an orientation executive, I was able to help first-years find their place in a new campus community and create memories and friendships that will last a lifetime. The opportunities and network being a Loran Scholar provide have pushed me to take on meaningful responsibilities, dream bigger, and work harder to make a positive difference in this world.”

Justina Marianayagam

“From a young age, I have witnessed the gaps in healthcare in the North—from being born via air ambulance to witnessing family and friends travel hundreds of kilometres for routine medical care. My time as a Loran Scholar taught me the importance of community development and sustainability, which is what drew me back to the North. Southern approaches to medicine cannot always be applied in the North and must involve local input from community members. That’s why I completed my MD at one of the only medical schools in Canada that tailors to the unique needs of rural/remote communities. I am now a Resident Physician training to become a Pediatrician at BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver, BC. After my training, I plan to return to my hometown: Yellowknife, Northwest Territories to practice. I look forward to reducing the health inequalities faced every day in the North.“

Julianna Tan

“Being selected as a Loran Scholar pushed me to step outside of my comfort zone and realize my true passions and potential in entrepreneurship.  As the owner and co-creator of Chocolate by Those Girls at The Market and co-owner of The Little Market Box, I am dedicated to sharing the stories and passions of local food producers across Saskatchewan. I get to spend every day connecting with fellow foodie entrepreneurs and changing the way our community gets food onto their families’ plates. Loran has encouraged me to find growth opportunities in every challenge I face and inspired me to take meaningful risks.“

Alex Mitchell

“As CEO of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce, I am a  fierce advocate for small business, economic development, and the potential of the Fraser Valley. I strive to live out the Loran values in my day-to-day, giving back to the community and working to empower the next generation of leaders to engage in civic life, service, and entrepreneurship.”

David-Martin Milot

“The Loran Scholars Foundation has given me the skills and help, but most importantly, the confidence I need both personally and professionally to reach my goals. Thanks to my community development and public health policy summers in Senegal, India, and Argentina, I have developed a true understanding of international development and international cooperation issues. This has led me to explore a variety of environments and projects and to climb the ranks to my current position as President of the Board of Directors of Doctors of the World Canada. In that capacity, I am able to take an active role in the committee of 17 presidents of the organization’s international delegations.“

Alex Mazer

“In my current role as co-founder & co-CEO of Common Wealth, I am working to build a future where long-term financial security is possible for everyone. My 25+ year experience with the Loran program, starting as a high school student from rural PEI, has been and continues to be, essential to shaping my path, values, and view of how I can best contribute to society. Loran both pushed and enabled me to take risks and tackle problems that would not have otherwise been possible. I love giving back to the Loran community because I want to help provide for other young people what Loran provided for me: helping me see some potential in myself that I did not see at the time.”

Dr. Janelle Joseph

“The most important thing I learned through Loran is never to stop learning! As a professor, I learn from my research, from my students, and from my colleagues. I lead the Indigeneity, Diaspora, Equity, and Anti-racism in Sport (IDEAS) Research Lab at the University of Toronto. My passion is to share with the world the experiences of racialized peoples in Canada so that we can make physical activity opportunities more accessible and inclusive. To do so, we can’t limit ourselves to exploring only one ethnic group or only one sport. We can’t investigate only sport volunteerism, coaching, leadership or education. I engage many stakeholders and theoretical perspectives to solve Canada’s complex problems of social exclusion.”

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How to Apply