Call for nominations: Student Leadership Awards

Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 1:45pm to Monday, February 25, 2019 - 12:00am

​OCAD University's annual Student Recognition and Leadership Awards Dinner celebrates students excellence outside the classroom, and acknowledges their commitment to equity, advocacy, social justice, student life and fellowship.

This year the Campus Life office is thrilled to let the community know that we have grown our portfolio of awards by creating three new opportunities to recognize students who have given so much of themselves to our community.

In addition to our long-standing awards recognizing Peer Mentors, Student Group Leaders, and students committed to Diversity & Equity, this year we have added an Indigenous Student Leadership Award, an Excellence in Student Leadership Award, and a Student Employee Excellence Award. 

All of these awards rely on nominations from the community, so please take a few moments to consider nominating a peer that has influenced your experience at OCAD U. They could win not only this important recognition, but also a cash prize! The deadline to submit your nomination(s) is 11:59 p.m. Monday, February 25, 2019. Links to each nomination form are included below. 

The awards:

NEW: Indigenous Student Leadership Award
This award recognizes an outstanding Indigenous student who has demonstrated exceptional leadership skills by actively participating in and contributing to the Indigenous student community at OCAD U, exemplifying a commitment to supporting its growth and development.

NEW: Excellence in Student Leadership Award
This award aims to recognize the outstanding contributions of student leaders across the university in a variety of contexts, including but not limited to representing student perspectives in positions on OCAD U committees, working groups, task forces, governance bodies (such as the Senate or Board of Governors), or through publications, advocacy groups or the Student Union.

NEW: Student Employee Excellence Award
This award acknowledges the considerable contributions made by OCAD U student employees (monitors) towards the operations of the university by recognizing student employee excellence, achievement, leadership and skills development.

Peer Mentor Awards acknowledge those Peer Mentors who have made outstanding contributions supporting new and first-year students in helping them build their sense of community.

The Diversity & Equity Excellence Award for Students acknowledges an outstanding student whose advocacy and leadership promote and advance human rights, equity and social justice on campus.

The Student Group Leader Award is presented annually to a student group leader who excels, above and beyond in their leadership role by demonstrating outstanding contributions, commitment and support to their group members and the OCAD University community.

The Campus Life office offers a heartfelt thanks for the generous support of our Alumni Association, Alumni Relations office, Financial Aid & Awards, the Imagination Catalyst, Indigenous Student Services, the OCAD Student Union and the Offices of the President, theVice-President, Academic & Provost, and the Vice-Provost, Students & International, whose contributions make this event possible.​

Toronto Cares Challenge reveals personal impact of gun violence

Saturday, October 27, 2018 - 3:00pm to 6:00pm

In response to the devastating tragedies related to gun violence in Toronto this past year, 45 shooting deaths and a 32 per cent spike since 2017, Scadding Court Community Centre launched the #TO Cares Challenge – a platform for Torontonians to share their feelings on how to reclaim Toronto and the peaceful city through the arts. 

Scadding Court Community Centre and OCADU are hosting the first ever #TO Cares Challenge Art Awards and Exhibit to honour all submissions and gun violence experts, community leaders, academics and victims of gun violence will also discuss the importance of community-led approaches to reducing gun violence as well as using art as a form of healing, standing together to speak out against violence. 

Torontonians voted on 68 multimedia submissions which were received from people across the GTA and included creations from children as young as five to seniors. Awards will be distributed according to public voting:

The exhibition will continue online as testament to the city’s strength:

When: Saturday, October 27, 2018. Doors: 3pm/Speakers and Awards: 4pm-5pm/Close: 6pm.

Where: OCAD U, 100 McCaul Street, MCA-190, Main Auditorium


  1. Ian Clarke, Associate Dean, OCAD University
  2. Kenisha Peters, Vice-Chair of the Scadding Court Community Centre Board
  3. Dr. Wendy Cukier, Director, Diversity Institute, Ryerson University
  4. Louis March, Founder of the Zero Gun Violence Movement
  5. Kelly Whetter, mother of a victim of gun violence & Co-Founder of Communities for Zero Violence

Media Contact:  416 392-0335



Venue & Address: 
OCAD University, 100 McCaul Street, MCA-190, Main Auditorium

Bursaries & Awards Now Available!

AwardSpring Image
Thursday, October 11, 2018 - 3:45pm

The 2018/19 AwardSpring system is now available for application. This is a general application for all scholarships, awards and bursaries that will be available during the 2018/19 academic year.

Students have until November 23, 2018 to complete the application if they wish to be considered for bursaries.  Some bursaries may require additional information, which the system will identify.

The available scholarships and awards will be posted in the system in January 2019. A second application is not required for these opportunities. Students can update the existing application if applicable.

If you have any questions, please contact the Financial Aid & Awards Office.

OCAD U students make the Adobe semi-finals

Illustration of tiny things floating
Friday, July 20, 2018

Some two-dozen students have made it to the semis of the Adobe Design Achievement Awards (ADAA)! OCAD U is always well represented in this international competition for creative students of all disciplines. Categories include illustration, photography, package design and 11 more.

To see all of our finalists, go to the ADAA website and filter for OCAD U students.

For additional competition updates, follow the action on social media: @adobeawards.


Results from several industry competitions have just been announced!

Photo by Aliya Ghare
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 - 2:00pm



Congratulations to 4th year students Aliya Ghare (see above image), Jinke Wang, Francesca Chan, and 3rd year student, Lily Snowden-Fine, all of whom have work chosen to appear online as part of The American Illustration archive at

Their illustrations were among 315 images chosen from over 8,000 submitted worldwide. This year’s distinguished jury included: Damien Correll, Google; Jim Datz, The New York Times Op-Ed; Phoebe Flynn Rich, Rachel Ray Everyday; Alison Forner, Simon and Schuster; Na Kim, Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Michael Mrak, Scientific American; and Ivylise Simones, WIRED.




Toko Hosoya, 2nd yr student, was awarded The Society of Illustrators 60 (Professional show), GOLD AWARD, for the Uncommissioned category. Toko also had work chosen for the 2018 Student Scholarship Exhibition. Lily Snowden-Fine was awarded for 2 pieces and is the recipient of the Nancy Lee Rhodes Roberts Scholarship Award which comes with a $5,000.00 cash prize. Exhibiting this May in New York’s Museum of American Illustration with Toko and Lily, will be 4th yr students Adam De Souza and Jisu Lee, 3rd yr student Eryn Lougheed Crowell, and 2nd yr student Mia November. 


The winning images were selected from 8,700 entries submitted by American and Canadian universities. A jury of professional peers, including illustrators and art directors chose the most outstanding works created in 2017-18.





Andrew Watch, ILLU 2017, won the BRONZE AWARD and a Merit. Varvara Nedilska, 3rd yr student, won a Distinguished Merit and 2 Honorable Merits. Adam de Souza was awarded a Distinguished Merit and multiple Honorable Mentions. Aliya Ghare, Cindy Lee, Cameron Miller, Ann Sheng, Lily Snowden-Fine were awarded Merits. Varvara Nedilska and Cindy Lee, ILLU 2017, both won multiple Honorable Mentions, while Jisu Lee and ILLU 2017 graduates Christopher Dupon-Martinez, Anna Kwan and Adam Marin were awarded individual Honorable Mentions. 


3x3 is the first publication devoted entirely to the art of contemporary illustration. Published in the United States and distributed worldwide, its sole interest is in sharing what’s shaping international illustration.





Francesca Chan and Jenn Woodall, 4th yr students, were runners up for CQ51. Sarah Mason, 4th yr, was a winner and runner up, while Olivia Di Gregorio, 3rd yr, and Cameron Miller, ILLU 2017, were runners up for CQ50. Erin McCluskey, ILLU 2017, was a runner up for CQ49. And Janine Kwok (4th yr) and Chris Tu, 3rd yr, were runners up for CQ48.


Creative Quarterly is an international journal focussing on promoting the work of the creative community.




Varvara Nedilska and Eryn Lougheed Crowell won student awards for 2017. Winners for 2018 will be announced in the summer.

Applied Arts has been published in Canada since 1986 to a readership of 46,000 creative and marketing professionals.




Student leaders recognized for contributions to OCAD U

OCAD U student leaders were celebrated on March 22 for their outstanding extracurricular leadership contributions at Campus Life’s annual recognition and awards dinner. 

Student leaders recognized for contributions to OCAD U

Monday, March 26, 2018

OCAD U student leaders were celebrated on March 22 for their outstanding extracurricular leadership contributions at Campus Life’s annual recognition and awards dinner. Emcee’d by Campus Life Student Monitor Daniel Naraindas, and included remarks from President and Vice Chancellor Dr. Sara Diamond and Vice-President, Academic & Provost Gillian Siddall.

The Diversity & Equity Excellence Award for Students, supported by OCAD Student Union and Office of the Vice-Provost, Students & International, acknowledges an outstanding student whose advocacy and leadership, promoting and advancing human rights, equity and social justice.

This year’s recipient, Meghana Ravi, co-led The Kaleidoscope Project, a multi-part arts-based participatory research project that included community consultations, an interactive public arts installation, and a full-length documentary that reflected the experiences and stories of OCAD U’s international student community. “Meghana is an exemplary student leader who uses her expertise in visual communication to engage in community building, education, and advocacy on issues of race and ethno-cultural identity, the international student experience, and decolonizing design,” said Sharmina Chherawala, Programs, Outreach & Human Rights Advisor in the Office of Diversity, Equity and Sustainability Initiatives.

As an advocacy initiative, The Kaleidscope Project amplified the voices of equity-seeking communities on campus and situated all participants as experts and educators in sharing their critical analysis and lived experiences. “Meghana’s project helped build a stronger international student community on campus, and was highlighted in Now Magazine, showcasing how OCAD U community members are advancing decolonization in the curriculum and beyond. The highly anticipated documentary screening and panel discussions premiered to a packed house of students, faculty, staff, senior leadership and community members,” explained Chherawala.

Peer Mentor Awards, supported by First Generation Programs, acknowledge Peer Mentors who have made outstanding contributions to the Student Mentor Program over the past program year. This year’s recipients, Daniel Lugo Travieso and Matt McCleery, have both demonstrated an inclusive approach in sharing their wealth of knowledge and insights. They have taken initiative to help other students navigate the university, it’s systems and programs and off-campus resources, and exercised patience when responding to questions. Their commitment to keeping in touch with their mentees, and to help students connect with each other and opportunities have helped build our student community. An honourary mention was given to Becky Wu.

Special Commitment Pins were presented to Peer Mentors who have shown commitment to the Student Mentor Program. For the first time ever, a four-year pin was presented to Arashdeep Chahal, while three-year commitment pins were given to Elisabeth Chan, Jacqueline Lee and Adria Maynard.

The Student Group Leader of the Year Award, made possible by Imagination Catalyst, is presented to a student leader of a group who excels, above and beyond in their leadership role. This year it was awarded to The Grind’s Russell Chiu. The Grind is an incubator for students who want to start their own small business, with goals to encourage networking and collaboration between students, provide workshops, guest speakers, and resources to assist in the development of new skills and portfolio building.

“Our student group leaders embody the entrepreneurial qualities of creativity, innovation, risk-taking and independence,” said Ahmed ElBedaway of the Imagination Catalyst. “Russell works consistently on bringing The Grind team together to curate a variety of inclusive entrepreneurship and creative business events on campus through encouraging open-floor discussion of ideas, while ensuring the core team members are on the right path of growing the group, supporting personal growth of each individual member, and making sure that he is able to help others achieve their goals as well as his own.”

Deanne Fisher, Vice-Provost, Students & International, acknowledged the commitment and leadership of OCAD Student Union executive and student participants in Board of Governors and OCAD U Senate.

Andre De Freitas, Manager, Financial Aid & Awards, presented a special Excellence in Student Services Award to Michelle Pereza, who, since 2016, has served students with expertise, empathy, enthusiasm and excellence. “An extraordinary student services representative, Michelle’s skills and dedication have helped to break down financial barriers for her student peers,” said De Freitas.

Special interest, student-run clubs and the six-year old Intramural Program at OCAD U allow interaction among students, support faith and culture, and create an atmosphere of diversity while encouraging self-development, entrepreneurship, social responsibility, environmental awareness, and fitness and well-being. Brent Everett James, Campus Life Coordinator, acknowledged student group leaders and intramural team captains for their leadership and contribution to community.

Thank you to Financial Aid & Awards, First Generation Program, Office of the President, OCAD Student Union, Office of the Vice-Provost, Students & International, Imagination Catalyst and Campus Life for making this evening possible. 

Group photo of student winners with OCAD U staff

Call for Nominations: PEER MENTOR AWARDS

Supported by OCAD U First Generation​ Program

kfaller's picture

Fourth Year Awards & Medals Program Application Deadline

All fourth year undergraduate students are invited to apply to the Fourth Year Awards & Medals Program! Deadline: Monday, March 19, 2018, 11:59 p.m.

Industrial Design Students win awards at the Toronto Design Festival

The Naloxone Storage Unit
Instructors Stool
Thursday, January 25, 2018 - 12:00pm

Design for Health 3rd Year undergraduate course:

2 Design line awards and 2 Herman Miller Jurors choice awards:


Third-year undergraduate industrial design students at OCAD University at Toronto Design Offsite exhibit, Designing For Health, Wellness, Action And Destigmatization


1. Designlines Award & Herman Miller Juror’s Choice Award & covered in Now Magazine:

"The Naloxone Storage Unit":  A first aid response kit for Naloxone storage that helps restaurants and bars to assist trained and untrained bystanders such as bar staff and guests with providing first aid for Opioid overdose emergencies.

3rd Year ID Studio 4: Design for Health & Wellness (core studio)

ID Students: Madeleine Bailey, Winnie Chen and Yifei Li

Instructor: Wesley Chau (Sessional)

Subject Matter Expert: Ruby Sniderman

Curriculum development & course lead: Lecturer Wesley Chau, Associate Professor & Program chair Angelika Seeschaaf-Veres, Associate Professor Dr. Kate Sellen

Exhibition curation: Assistant Professor Beverly Dywan (CLTA)

NOW magazine article by Samatha Edwards (January 21st 2018): What if life-saving naloxone kits were accessible in public spaces?

OCAD University design students have created a series of prototypes that would allow untrained bystanders to respond to an overdose & Graduate Design for Health student work for a “ how-to–guide” for a Pop-up safe injection site using Toronto’s Moss Park as case study.


2. Title: Instructors stool

A stool for instructors in a school with mental and physical challenges, to support diverse tasks and postures and provide storage. It allows them to move freely and smoothly without tipping and has a feature to rest their iPad behind the backrest to ease communication. The sides of the stool also serve as a drum to promote play and rhythm.

ID Students: Raymond Fong, Ramon Ruiz and Guillaume Roy

Instructor: Assistant Professor Ranee Lee

Principal investigator, Curriculum development & course lead: Associate Professor & Program chair Angelika Seeschaaf-Veres

Exhibition curation: Assistant Professor Beverly Dywan (CLTA)


3. Designlines award:

OCAD U x YSM (Regent Park): Elevation through creative collaboration

2rd Year ID Studio 2: Identity materialized –Design for Social change (core studio)

Title: Reversible Canadian winter shawl

ID Students: Aylin Ezurumluoglu

Instructor:  Assistant Professor Beverley Dywan (CLTA)

Subject Matter experts: Regent Park Creative Woman Collective & Young Street Mission

Curriculum development & course lead & exhibition curation: Assistant Professor Ranee Lee


4. OFF COURSE – work in progress by OCAD U Industrial Design and graphic design 4th year Bachelor of Design students


Students from the Industrial Design and Graphic Design programs at OCAD University are featuring their self-authored work in progress through print, prototypes, and full scale models. The projects raise questions and respond to global issues through visual, physical, and interactive outcomes.

Herman Miller juror’s choice award for

4h Year ID Studio 6: Major design Project (core studio)

Title: “Don’t tell me to smile “ Creating collective responsibility through design for harassment in public places

ID Student: Liz Durden

Instructors & Curators: Assitant Professor Koby Barhad (CLTA) & Associate Professor Angelika Seeschaaf Veres


4 Designlines awards for Tables, chairs and other unrelated objects 7:

Exhibition was curated by ID 4th year student Ellie Oram-O’donnell


5. At Daniels Spectrum

Title: TBT: Still Life 

Student: Thomas Kim (ID 3rd year)

Design Furniture 1 - Fall 2017 

Instructors: Professor Gord Peteran & Furniture construction: Professor Ted Hunter


6. Title: “Hamaca”

Pablo Muños  (ID 4th year)

Design Furniture 1 - Spring 2017 

Instructors: Professor Gord Peteran & Furniture construction: Professor Ted Hunter


7. at Ignite Gallery 

Title: The London Coat Stand 

Payvar Sazesh (ID 4th year)

Furniture 2 class spring 2017 with project client as Umbra. 

Instructor: Kirsten White (Sessional)