Business Administration graduate continues education journey in Ireland

It was a code red weather warning that made Claire Campbell think of home during her student exchange in Ireland. Specifically, Canadian winters.

“It snowed about 12 centimetres,” said Claire, who was attending LIT in Limerick, Ireland for her student exchange at the time. “It was funny because in Canada we see snow all the time but in Ireland it was almost a crisis.”

Schools were closed for days, people stocked up on food, and shops struggled to keep bread and milk supplied, said Claire. But the Fleming Business Administration student, who had experienced many harsh Canadian winters, was unfazed and enjoyed her time.

“I had visited my friend for the weekend and we all stayed at home eating food and playing in the snow,” she said. “We were using sacks of coal as toboggans and every house you drove by had a snowman in the front yard. It was fun to see the Irish experience snow, but also it gave me a little taste of home.”

Claire decided to travel to Ireland for the student exchange at LIT because she wanted to broaden her cultural experience and challenge herself in a different educational environment.

“It’s important to take every opportunity that comes your way and I knew I’d regret it if I didn’t,” explains Claire. “I am extremely thankful for Fleming College and all of the amazing opportunities I’ve had.”

Claire recommends the exchange because it introduces a new world of education, culture, perspectives, people and experiences. She describes it as the biggest and best decision she has ever made.

“The most valuable thing I’ve gained from my experience abroad is my self-perception and independence. It takes a lot to move to a new country completely on your own,” said Claire, a self-described homebody. “I thrive challenge and this whole experience has motivated me to step out of my comfort zone, meet new people, and try new things.” 

Claire moved back home after her six-month student exchange and graduated from Fleming’s Business Administration program in 2019. She was employed as a Project Assistant at BWXT Nuclear Energy Canada, but dreamed of returning to Ireland to continue her education journey.

“It was a very tough decision for me to quit my job, sell my car and move to the other side of the world, but I don’t regret it at all,” said Claire, who is now earning her Level 8 Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at the Cork Institute of Technology. “I believe it’s extremely important to invest in your personal and professional growth, and the experience itself is priceless.”

Claire describes Ireland as a beautiful country with so much to see and do, and an amazing transportation system to help you explore it. “The people are friendly, the teachers are dedicated, and the culture is one-of-a-kind,” she adds.

Claire plans to graduate from the Cork Institute of Technology this May and believes her educational experience in Canada and Ireland will benefit her career.

“I have learned an abundance of new skills and I enjoy the applied style of learning, which helped push myself out of my comfort zone,” said Claire of her Fleming College experience. “Educational experience in both a Canadian college and an Irish institution has given me a versatile professional background.”

College is more than a diploma for Rory Morley, it’s a chance to stand out

Rory Morley wanted more from his college experience than just a diploma, he wanted to stand out.

“If you go to college just for classes, then it’s just another course on your CV,” said Rory, Business Administration – Marketing graduate (Class of 2019). “That’s where Enactus comes in.”

Enactus Fleming is a student-led entrepreneurial club where students apply their skills to entrepreneurship, participate in workshops, impact the economic growth of international communities, and start a business on campus. Rory joined Enactus Fleming during his second year, wanting to get more involved in the business world and participate in sales competitions.

Rory’s first competition was the Great Canadian Sales Competition, where he represented Fleming College all the way to the Finals. He started collaborating more with faculty advisor Raymond Yip Choy to become more competitive during his final year at Fleming, going on to speak at the regional competition in Mississauga.

“Raymond didn’t push me, but he really motivated me to do it and to develop those skills,” said Rory on pitching ideas at Enactus competitions against other post-secondary students. “But it’s just a really rewarding group to be a part of. You’re helping genuine people and these are genuine lives. It’s across functions: sustainability, people, business, and more.”

Rory’s favourite project for Enactus Fleming is Project United, which welcomed elementary students from King Albert School in Lindsay, Ont., to Fleming’s Sutherland Campus in Peterborough, introducing them to post-secondary school.

“This is a school that has no money, so there are no field trips at that school,” Rory explains. “So we went to the school and talked to the children there, and gave them a chance to come to Fleming. They came here and built chairs, cooked in the kitchen, took a tour of the campus… and they looked at college as a place they want to be.”

Through Enactus Fleming, Rory said he developed business acumen, teamwork skills, project management, learned how to behave in an executive presence as well as the ability to talk in a business environment, and more.

“As a measure of success, I wouldn’t have the job I have today without Enactus,” said Rory. “In the second stage of my interview, she specifically asked about Enactus.”

Rory currently works as an Account Manager at Gartner, a research and advisory company that provides senior leaders with business insights, advice and tools to build their organizations. His career is based in Egham, Surrey in England and although that took Rory far from Canada, it helped bring him back home.

Rory is from Windlesham, Surrey and what led him to Canada was a love of sport. Rory is a soccer (or “football”) player and discovered Fleming College in Peterborough, Ont., through the varsity soccer team. Rory joined the Fleming Knights and played on the men’s soccer team for three years, and also served as captain.

“For me it was brilliant,” he said. “In the past, I struggled to keep up with academics from a motivation standpoint, but Fleming Athletics gave me the structure of class and sport, and you still have time to enjoy college. And the social side of varsity is brilliant because it gave me friends immediately, who are part of the team.”

Rory’s advice to future and current Fleming students is to separate themselves from the rest.

“Do more than the program because it is competitive out there,” he explains. “Join Enactus, do philanthropy, play a sport, get involved and make the most of your Fleming experience.”

Meet Social Media Ambassador Joao Borges

Given Joao “John” Borges’s ability to effectively manage a very busy schedule, it is not surprising he is in the Project Management program at Fleming College.

In this post-graduate program, students develop skills and knowledge to efficiently manage all aspects of a project to achieve organizational goals. For John, time management and organizational skills are key to his student success at Fleming, where he serves as Director of Student Administrative Council and Communications Lead in Enactus Fleming, while attending school full-time.

“I love getting involved on campus!” said John. “I have been involved with SAC and Enactus Fleming for almost two years now. I would say these are my favourite ones, as I get to do different things every week, engage and meet students, while improving my  skills and doing good for my campus.”

After graduating from the Business Administration – Marketing program this year, John decided to continue his studies at Fleming College and take the Project Management graduate certificate to further build his resume. His career goal is to work in advertising one day.

“I believe learning about the Project Management areas will be an asset to my career path,” he explains. “Fleming offers a stellar Project Management program and I’ve heard wonderful things from students that already graduated and are now currently working.”

In addition to his studies at Fleming, John also took a part-time position in Fleming’s Marketing Department. He is working as a Social Media Ambassador, creating content for Fleming College’s social media accounts.

“This is a huge milestone for the career path I want to pursue and I believe I will be learning great things with the Fleming Marketing team,” said John. “Secondly, I want to contribute to Fleming and give back to the students, and I want to try to showcase all the great things that Fleming has to offer!”

John loves the “lively and vibrant atmosphere” at Sutherland Campus, the amount of opportunities to get involved, and the support students receive from staff and faculty.

“At Fleming, everyone wants you to succeed, so ask as many questions as you can,” said John. “Try to step out of your comfort zone and take advantage of all the opportunities Fleming provides, because trust me, there’s always something that matches your interests!”

Timing is everything for Grad Recruiter Alannah Kennedy

Timing is everything.

The first time Alannah Kennedy came to Fleming College, she started right after high school in 2008, she didn’t feel ready for post-secondary school and she left during the winter semester.

The second time Alannah came to Fleming College, she was a mature student in 2017, she felt ready and excited to begin her studies, and she proudly completed the Office Administration – Executive program.

“I chose to return to Fleming and commute from Oshawa because I never forgot how Fleming made me feel; Fleming was like a family and everyone is very inclusive and really cares about you and your success,” said Alannah. “When I made the decision to return to school, Fleming was my first and only choice.”

Alannah’s favourite thing about Fleming College is the support offered by faculty and support staff, who truly care about every student.

“You’re not just a number here. Our college community genuinely cares about you and your successes, whatever that may look like. Faculty and support staff know you by name, not your student ID number,” Alannah explains. “We are at an advantage being a mid-size college; there’s lots more one-on-one opportunities to help you succeed. And our programs give you a lot of hands-on work experience via simulations and/or out in the industry.”

During breaks from her classes, coursework, and working and volunteering on campus, Alannah enjoyed a hidden gem at Sutherland Campus, which she recommends to others.

“If you follow the pathway behind the school by the cafeteria… in behind the Library you come to this one opening that has a bunch of shrub with a little bench and, in behind, is this beautiful rock pathway that leads up to doors that are off the main foyer,” she describes. “I really enjoy the beauty of the rock steps, the shrubs and forest in this particular area. Not a lot of people use this area, so it’s a nice place for me to sit and clear my head.”

Alannah has come a long way since her first Fleming College experience and, now that she has finished her program, she doesn’t want to say good-bye. Instead, she will be working with Fleming’s Student Recruitment team as a Fleming Grad Recruiter.

“I feel like sharing my story and my experience at Fleming College will speak volumes to students and that’s why I wanted to be a Grad Recruiter,” said Alannah, who will be travelling across Ontario sharing information about Fleming College with prospective students.

“I am not much of a traveler; I would love to do some travelling but I am honestly a momma’s girl, so I tend stay close by my mom,” said Alannah. “This opportunity is allowing me to get out of my comfort zone and letting me experience our big beautiful province and meet different kinds of people, so I am really excited to be just experiencing new adventures and seeing where the road leads me.”

Business Administration – Accounting placement leads Ruixin Li to employment at “dream firm”

Ruixin (Rayna) Li came to Fleming College from China with a background in law, ready for a new career and life change.

“I was so shy and quiet before. I lacked leadership skills and did not want any attention,” said Rayna, who got involved with the SAC Street Team, served as an International Student Ambassador, volunteered on- and off-campus and more while at Fleming College. “I changed my career and my personality here. Coming to Canada is the best choice I have ever made.”

Rayna came to Fleming College for the Business Administration – Accounting program, which she describes as awesome, amazing, wonderful and meaningful. She credits her program faculty for their support, advice and kindness, explaining “They are all warm-hearted and care for us. The Accounting program is much more like a family.” 

Rayna says she truly values the advice of her faculty, including program coordinator Shelly York, who advised Rayna to earn her CPA designation through CPA Ontario. “I am really lucky to have followed her advice. It will have life-long benefits for me!” said Rayna.

What drew Rayna to the Business Administration – Accounting program was the work placement, where students apply their knowledge and skills to a real work setting. Rayna completed her four-month work placement at Baker Tilly, providing review and audit technician support for large businesses and non-profit organizations; accounting and bookkeeping for small to medium clients; supporting the preparation of financial statements and tax returns; and liaising with third parties, partners, managers, clients and staff.

“All of the content you learn, like QuickBooks, Profile and Audit, all come together,” said Rayna of her placement experience. “All the things I learned from College are useful and handy, and I got practise through real-life experience.”

Rayna said her colleagues, managers and partners at Baker Tilly were all very approachable and kind, and always checked in to ensure everything was going well for her.

“It is a wonderful learning environment,” said Rayna. “We have so many fun activities and people here are professional with a sense of humour, not just suits.”

Rayna believes work placements are an amazing opportunity for all students, and advises those entering a placement opportunity to always be on time, responsible and have a good attitude.

“It is a job, not only a learning placement,” she said. “Do not be afraid of asking questions and making mistakes—that’s how we learn. Please keep telling yourself ‘you can do it,’ and tell your boss ‘I am willing to learn and I can do it.’”

Rayna graduated from Fleming College this June and is thrilled that her placement led to full-time employment.

“I love the job I am doing now. I love it,” said Rayna, who is working as a Staff Accountant at Baker Tilly. “The Partners Richard Steiginga and Joanna Park, and COO Kim Freeburn surprised me; they had planned on hiring me but nobody told me anything about it. Then, I got my offer and I literally cried with happiness in their office. It is so good when you get hired by your dream firm!”

Rayna said she loves working at Baker Tilly because it is fast-paced and challenging. “There are different clients and different files and different problems to tackle, which makes me excited and lights me up immediately,” she explains. “Accounting is not only about numbers, it is more like you have to understand how their business and industry works and then you work with your client’s numbers, the policies and rules. It’s an interesting and challenging job.”

Valedictorian Lyndin Belleau finds home away from home at Fleming College

Lyndin Belleau was nervous to leave his home in Garden River First Nation, east of Sault Ste. Marie. In high school, Lyndin was told students are just numbers at colleges and universities, and that wasn’t something he was used to—and luckily, it isn’t something he ever has to.

“My experience at Fleming was nothing that I imagined. Fleming gave me so many opportunities that I don’t think any other college would have been able to provide me,” said Lyndin. “All my professors knew my name. It was nothing like they tell you in high school where you’re only known as a number.”

Lyndin took the Business Administration – Human Resources Management program because he wanted to work with people. He describes the Sutherland Campus in Peterborough, Ont., as amazing, with the beauty of the countryside and the convenience of city life.

To complement his studies, Lyndin worked as a Career Services Assistant with Fleming Career Services from September 2016 to April 2019. “Working with Career Services provided me with opportunities that the classroom couldn’t,” said Lyndin, who credits Job Fair planning as one of the skill-building experiences he gained on the job.

“But also learning a completely different side of business,” he explained. “In HR, we learn what is best for the business, whereas in Career Services we tailor services to the student/client to get them into the job. It was a great experience learning a completely different side from [Career Educators] Joanne Duffy and Lou Anne Hanes.”

Lyndin also volunteered his time on campus, sharing information with prospective students at Fleming’s Open House events, welcoming new students at Fleming Knights Orientation, recruiting new team members to Enactus Fleming during its inaugural year, and more. But its his involvement with Indigenous Student Services that Lyndin considers very special.

“I consider Indigenous Student Services one of my saviors during my time at Fleming,” said Lyndin, who participated in Tipi Tuesdays and Medicine Walks. “During my time at Fleming, I gained more then just a support system from Indigenous Student Services; I gained relationships from both the staff and students who accessed the lounge. The staff in Indigenous Student Services (Ashley Safar and Kylie Fox-Peltier) have a way of making the lounge feel like it’s a home away from home. They make everyone feel welcomed and are always willing to help when they can.”

Lyndin said he never expected to become so involved at Fleming College, but is glad he did.

“Getting involved on campus made my entire college experience that much better,” said Lyndin. “My time at Fleming had so many great experiences, in both the classroom and out of the classroom.”

One of his favourite experiences at Fleming was the Travel-Based Learning course, where Lyndin and his classmates travelled to Jamaica with two faculty members for one week. “This course allowed me to travel internationally for the first time, to experience different cultures, explore the tourism industry and how it works, and as well as having fun,” he said.

Lyndin said the Business Administration – Human Resources Management program prepared him for his career and he is already putting his knowledge into action as a Human Resources Assistant at Garden River First Nation, where he is working for a third summer. In September, Lyndin plans to continue his studies at Laurentian University, where he will study Sports Administration. Lyndin hopes to one day work in Human Resources at a sports organization.

But before that, Lyndin will serve as Valedictorian at the School of Business convocation ceremony this week.

“Being selected as Valedictorian was like a mix of emotions. I felt excited, scared, nervous, honoured and shocked all at the same time,” he said. “The message that I am trying to give to graduates is to never give up on continuing your journey in life, whether it is educational, workplace, or just life in general. You’ll always have a place at Fleming.”

International student Oanh Ho wins Female Business Student of the Year – Fleming College

For five years, Oanh (“Jo”) Ho worked in the hospitality industry in Vietnam, feeling exhausted from long work days in a busy city. She decided it was time for a change and wanted the adventure of studying abroad.

“I was born and grew up in the hustle of Ho Chi Minh City, and now I preferred something different, something unique and with a slower pace,” said Jo. “I’m happy with my choice of starting the new journey here at Fleming College.”

She chose the Global Business Management (GBM) program because it relates to her previous education in hospitality and career experience. Jo also feels that the length of this program (two years) gives her enough time to immerse herself in her studies, as well as Canadian culture and lifestyle.

“I treasure every moment I am here,” said Jo, who started the GBM program in January. “I’ve got to try my best whenever I have the chance; work hard at school, gain experience at my part-time job, participate in the Enactus Fleming group, and optimize but also balance my time budget efficiently before I graduate.”

2019 Female Business Student of the Year – Fleming College Award winner

It is this work ethic, enthusiasm and involvement in the community that led Jo to win the 2019 Female Business Student of the Year – Fleming College Award at the Women’s Business Network of Peterborough’s Women In Business Awards.

Faculty member Raymond Yip Choy canvassed faculty for nominations and said Jo received the most votes. In the nomination form, Raymond writes, “From the time that Jo started her Global Business Management program at Fleming College, she stood out as a leader. Not only has she been very diligent in her studies, but she has also taken the time to get involved in campus activities and is always looking for ways to give back to the community.”

He adds, “Her peers and her professors all agree that she is exactly the kind of woman that will make a real difference to the business and the wider community.”

Jo said she was surprised to receive an award after only three months in the country and was very excited to be chosen.  

“In class, the front row is my favorite spot to sit, as I always prioritize studying because this experience is a huge investment from my parents. With an estimated GPA of 3.5 after my first semester, my efforts are paying off,” said Jo.

Jo said she is a mature student and the only Vietnamese student in her program, which forces her to immerse herself in a different culture, get involved, and develop her language skills.

“I strongly believe that a person can evaluate an issue as a challenge or a chance, it’s mostly up to their mindset,” said Jo, who views this as a chance.

Leading Enactus Fleming

One chance Jo took was getting involved in Enactus Fleming, a student-led entrepreneurial club where students apply their skills to entrepreneurship, participate in workshops, impact the economic growth of international communities, and start a business on campus.

“When I first came to Fleming, I knew I had to find that club!” said Jo, who found Enactus Fleming on her first day. “I heard of Enactus before coming to Canada as I was inspired by another Vietnamese student, who is the president of Enactus at Bow Valley College in Alberta. I watched her updates from Regionals to Nationals and then to the World Cup, and the spirit of the people at these events is what triggered me to want to become one of them. That’s when I added ‘join Enactus Fleming’ to my To-Do List.”

A few months after joining Enactus Fleming, Jo presented at the regional pitch competition in Mississauga, and on April 3 she was elected as President of Enactus Fleming. Now, Jo is helping prepare the team for the national pitch competition in Vancouver.

“My favourite experience in Enactus isn’t one thing or time, it’s our meetings that we have every Wednesday,” said Jo. “The quality of the time we spend together is important and we have become friends who can share about school and life. Enactus has given me the chance to expand my network with Indians, Brazilians, Canadians and Russian.”

Jo credits previous president Emily Scott for believing Jo could lead Enactus Fleming, and faculty member Raymond Yip Choy for his dedication to the team and his guidance.

Peterborough is Jo’s perfect place for college

When Jo isn’t busy studying or meeting with Enactus Fleming, she is playing in the bell choir at Sacred Heart Church, working part-time at Zaffron Grill, or spending time with new friends at the Trent Valley International Coffee House group, which she recently joined.

“Peterborough is a great place to focus on studying and engage in interesting activities. With a smaller campus community, it is a good chance for international students to get involved with on-campus activities and have fairly less pressure and competition than bigger cities,” said Jo.

“I would definitely recommend Fleming College to other international students because not only is the school good, but also the students and the faculty make your experience even better. I really believe that Canada has treated me so nice since I first came and I really believe the chances for international students are always available for everyone.”

Tourism – Global Travel graduate cannot wait to hit the road as a Fleming Grad Recruiter

vivienne-maxwellIt is obvious what Tourism – Global Travel graduate Vivienne Maxwell is looking forward to most as a Fleming College Grad Recruiter: getting to travel across Ontario!

“I love to travel and I am looking forward to seeing the scenery in my own province for my next adventure,” said Vivienne, who will be speaking with prospective students across Ontario about Fleming College. “I’m most looking forward to experiencing new places in Ontario that I’ve never been before.”

In addition to the travel opportunity, Vivienne decided to work as a Grad Recruiter to develop her skills while staying close to the Fleming community.

“Keeping my ties with Fleming was important to me and perhaps I wasn’t quite ready to go… This position was a great way to stay connected but also move forward into a new position,” said Vivienne, who graduated from Fleming this year. “Secondly, I knew this position would help me build on professional skills, such as time management, marketing and organization.”

Vivienne also plans to utilize her networking skills, which she developed in the Tourism – Global Travel program at Fleming.

“Networking myself was one of the biggest lessons that I took away from college,” said Vivienne. “Due to the field placement portion of my program, I was able to build strong connections within the college and within the community that eventually led me to employment opportunities.”

Vivienne loves the tight-knight, small community vibe at Fleming, adding that, “I always knew my professors and peers personally. We built great relationships that I will continue to nurture into the future.”

Outside of her program, Vivienne also made friendships in the Indigenous Student Lounge.

“Hands-down, my favourite spot on campus is the Indigenous Lounge. Not only did I make lifelong friendships in this safe space, I learned so much about Indigenous cultures and found a place that truly felt like home on campus,” she said. “Anyone is welcome in the Lounge; it is a place to bridge the differences we share and sincerely respect one another. Sometimes school can be stressful and this environment allowed me to escape the hustle and bustle of the halls and feel at peace.”

Vivienne is looking forward to spreading the word about Fleming College as a Grad Recruiter. Her key points for endorsing Fleming include great specializations, strong reputation in many industries, and faculty who are professionals with strong networks.

“I’m constantly hearing how employers are looking for Fleming graduates,” said Vivienne. “This is why you should come to Fleming. If you’re willing to put in the work, you will be successful here.”

Alaura Jopling wants to inspire a new post-secondary beginning for high school students

alaura-joplingAlaura Jopling’s post-secondary journey did not start with Fleming College, which is why she decided to become a Grad Recruiter with Student Recruitment.

“I want to educate and inspire the young students who are starting to apply to post-secondary because, had I known then what I know now, my journey would have a completely different beginning,” said Alaura.

After graduating from high school, Alaura entered university, which she describes as very large and made her feel like a “number.” Although she did enjoy the social aspect, she struggled academically at university.

“When I got to Fleming, it was the polar opposite,” said Alaura, who took the Business Administration – Marketing program. “My favourite thing about Fleming is that class sizes are around thirty students; faculty know you by name and even get to know you as not only a student, but as a future business person. They want you to succeed– not only in your future career, but in life.”

At Fleming, Alaura said she learned about her field of study, gained hands-on experience through assignments and her Applied Project with the Innovation Cluster, and grew as a person while exploring her strengths and weaknesses.

She said her favourite spot on campus is the library, which she started using after realizing most of her classmates were studying there.

“I knew that if I really wanted to succeed, I needed to be a part of this group,” she said. “I went there almost every day– before classes, after classes and even on my days off. The atmosphere was perfect. We would study together, quiz one-another and even teach one another.”

She feels Fleming really does live up to the promise of “Learn, Belong, Become,” and thanks everyone in the Fleming community who helped her succeed.

“After having that first negative post-secondary experience, I wasn’t sure that I was going to succeed. Fleming taught me how to be confident again; how to use my own uniqueness and skills in the field, and how it would set me apart from others. I learned the best way to be me and that truly is the best outcome I could have hoped for,” she said. “The best thing I learned while attending Fleming was that I am capable, I am intelligent, and I can – and am going to – succeed.”

From taking a multi-millionaire out to dinner to creating a business, Fleming College is a wild ride for Dylan Trepanier

dylan-t-blogWhen Dylan Trepanier reflects on his most memorable experience at Fleming College, he recalls the time he took a multi-millionaire to dinner in his 2006 Chevrolet Equinox.

He had been tasked with driving Nicole Verkindt – a young, successful entrepreneur who founded OMX (Offset Market Exchange) and serves as a Dragon on CBC’s “Next Gen Den” – from the Innovation Cluster to St. Veronus restaurant. Nicole was in Peterborough to speak at a FastStart Fleming event and Dylan had won the opportunity to have dinner with her afterward.

“I’ll never forget her racing me to my car and getting in the passenger seat, and all I could think about was the bits of dried paint on the seat and the fact I was about to drive around a Dragon,” said Dylan, who graduated from the Business Administration – Marketing program this year.

“But the moment I remember the most that night is when all the stress melted away, when she asked to listen to my story.”

He shared his business idea with Nicole, a driven and passionate “rock star” business person named Canada’s 2017 Woman Entrepreneur of the Year by StartUp Canada. Nicole enthusiastically asked Dylan questions and gave valuable feedback.

“I’ll never forget the feeling when she told me that she believed in me and my idea. It felt incredible to be acknowledged by someone who understands what it’s like to put everything on the line to follow their dreams,” he said.

Dylan’s business idea is Alexander Optical, a team of on-demand health care service professionals that organize pop-up eye exam clinics. Their teams visit places like schools, long-term care residences, and companies to offer eye health care services, including glasses.

Dylan (right) with the Alexander Optical team
Dylan (right) with the Alexander Optical team

He developed this idea in 2013 and came to Fleming College in September 2015 because of it, working with nearly every professor to tailor assignments, projects and case studies to help understand his business plan. In his last semester, Dylan officially launched Alexander Optical as his Applied Project for the Business Administration – Marketing program and presented it at the Innovation Showcase event, where he earned the Most Innovative Business Award and the Best Presenter Award.

Dylan was also awarded the GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Canada Award for Outstanding Business Achievements, The Duane Parnham Business Development Award, the Sustainable Peterborough Award, the Student Administrative Council’s President’s Award, and the Valedictorian Award.

“The Fleming College community is generous and supportive. My success here never would have been possible without the relationships built over the last three years. It’s this community that’s helped me to become confident in myself and my career choice,” said Dylan. “I loved my time here in this program, and having the co-curricular hands-on opportunities available to practice what I was learning in class made my time way more valuable.”

Through the Business Administration – Marketing program, Dylan developed communication skills, problem solving, accountability, and more.

“I 11/10 would recommend this diploma to a friend, have recommended it to friends, and I will continue to advocate on behalf of the program because I graduated feeling ready for the industry,” said Dylan. “I know my graduating class is going to do incredible things with the knowledge we’ve learned here.”

Dylan served as Valedictorian at the School of Business convocation ceremony this month and hopes his fellow graduates remember to seize the moment, prioritize their mental and physical health, get out of their comfort zone, learn where to focus their efforts, and remember they have the power to control how others treat them.

“And most importantly, put your heart into it,” he added.

Dylan thanks Student Life Coordinator Leona Folz, and faculty members Raymond Yip Choy and Wendy Morgan for being role models, and the Class of 2018 for helping make amazing memories.

“This class is going down in the history books, you watch,” he said.

Now that Dylan has graduated from Fleming College, he is working on Alexander Optical full-time. Dylan was selected as one of seven youth entrepreneurs for the Innovation Cluster Slingshot Program, which provides him with workspace and access to workshops, resources, specialists and tools throughout the summer culminating in a pitch competition to become a full-time client of the Cluster and win $1000.

“With the skills I’ve learned in class, I’ve been able to create a lean and profitable business model that satisfies the three pillars of sustainability, creates incredible impact, and is continuing to gain momentum with the support of the Innovation Cluster,” said Dylan.