16 uOttawa alumni share their words of wisdom for new grads

Posted on Monday, June 24, 2019

Un groupe de nouveaux diplômés près du canal Rideau, ils tiennent des diplômes et des bouquets.

You've walked across the stage to receive your diploma, now what!? Read words of advice for new graduates from sixteen uOttawa alumni around the globe.

Jeannine Ritchot

1. “Be bold. Occupy space. You belong. In every conversation. At every table. Your opinion matters. Your ideas will change the world. Believe in yourselves. Be fearless.”

Jeannine Ritchot, BA (History) 2000

Rahim Karmali

2. “Be relentlessly fearless. The world is yours to explore and experience. Nevertheless, remember what brought you here. Dream big: a dream that has a bigger purpose for humanity.”

Rahim Karmali, MA (Communications) 2018

Sylvie J. Lee,

3. “The best gift you can give yourself is to understand your own strengths and pursue that direction. Self-awareness is the foundation of any success. And most important, be kind: in this world, nothing comes from nothing.”

Sylvie J. Lee, BA (Linguistics) 1994 ; BEd 1995 ; MEd 1997 ; MBA (Business Administration) 2002

André-Philippe Chan

4. “If you give it your all to get there, expect to lose it all once you get there. Life is transforming something ordinary into something extraordinary until it becomes ordinary again. Don’t just believe in your dreams: make them happen. Do what you please until it pleases others and not the reverse. Don’t spend too much time trying to be someone that you are not because you will end up believing that you are truly that someone. Good luck!”

André-Philippe Chan, BSocSc 2012


Patrick Ladouceur

5. “Never stop learning! University has given us the knowledge that is the key to unlocking new learning opportunities”

Patrick Ladouceur, BSocSc (Political Science, Law) 2015

Nicolette Addesa

6. “Twenties = experiment years! Start the business, make mistakes! Don’t be scared of failure!!”

Nicolette Addesa, BA (Communications) 2014

7. “Congratulations to all soon-to-be graduates! It will be one of the best moments of your life! Like most of the individuals, you’ll come across all sorts of experiences in your professional lives: always believe in yourself and learn from those experiences.”

Muhammad Umair Khanzada, MEng (Mechanical Engineering) 2015

Stephanie Malette

8. “Pursuing a career in your field is not the only option. Explore!”

Stéphanie Malette (Ottawa), BA (English) 2018

Yves Roy

9. “Be passionate and stand out for the right reasons.”

Yves Roy, BA (Administration) 1989

Maria Habanikova

10. “Life after graduation isn't linear and will throw curveballs your way: don't be surprised. Also, patience in your first job is key: don't be hasty, learn as much as you can, and be the best at your job, even if you might feel that everyone else is doing more interesting work or earning more. You will encounter the right opportunities when the right time comes.”

Maria Habanikova, BSocSc (International Studies and Modern Languages) 2011 ; MA (Public and International Affaires) 2013

Hasan Almahmeed

11. “Never settle and keep improving.”

Hasan Almahmeed, BASc (Computer Engineering) 2010

12. “It is hard to figure out what you want but you can always build on something else to help you eventually get to your final goal. Always be productive, have fun learning or in your career. Give a hand to others when in need.”

Farouk Laichi, MASc (Electrical Engineering) 1993

Erika Pagratis

13. “Be happy, opportunities will come at the time they are supposed to.”

Erika Pagratis, BA 2018

Amol Singh Gill

14. “Remember to use the lessons you learned at uOttawa for the betterment of others! #GeeGee”

Amol Singh Gill, BHSc 2017

Maya Dancey

15. “Celebrate your accomplishments! And don’t be afraid to take time to breathe and figure out what’s next in your life.”

Maya Dancey, BSc (Biomedical Science) 2018

Jamie Petten

16. “Have patience with yourself. With time comes experience. With experience comes confidence. Embrace the fear, lean in to uncertainty, and remember you can accomplish anything you dedicate your mind and heart to.”

Jamie Petten, BA (Communications and psychology) 2011

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