Dayapreet Dhaliwal wins Alan F. Coventry Memorial Scolarship
The Department of Biology is proud to announce that Dayapreet Dhaliwal won 2021 Alan F. Coventry Memorial.
Prof Sanja Hinic-Frolg wrote that Daya is one of the most inspiring and devoted students she encountered during her career at UTM. Her mentorship with Daya was officially running for only a year (2017/18) but she quickly recognized that Daya’s maturity, reliability, perseverance and work ethic make her an excellent student and person and she continues to be in touch with her.
Through many chats with Daya, Prof. Hinic-Frlog learned that her devotion to her community extends beyond the classroom. When she met her in 2017/18, she was already involved in numerous community organization as a volunteer in addition to contributing to student organizations and being an excellent student. The extent of her continued involvement in her community is truly a great achievement. It is also a testament to Daya’s hard work and ability to manage her time and obligations so that she is successful academically, professionally, and personally.
Overall, Daya is a genuine student and an empathetic and kind team player who accomplishes what she strives for and exceeds expectations while doing so. She has a genuine interest in optometry and service to others and is a person with a high level of integrity.
What it means to win this award
Winning the Alan F. Coventry Memorial Scholarship is a true honour. The past 5 years at UTM have been incredibly challenging and as I embark on my optometry school journey, I know that I will face many more obstacles along the way. However, by recognizing my efforts and contributions, this award serves as a reminder to me that achievement is possible through effort. It motivates me to continue to push myself and work hard to reach and surpass my goals in my future optometry career. Of course, I owe my success to my supportive network of family, friends, and faculty and staff at UTM as much as to my own hard work. I would especially like to thank Dr. Sanja Hinić-Frlog from the UTM Biology department for serving as an incredible mentor. Dr. Hinić-Frlog not only provided me with academic guidance and opportunities but also taught me skills and lessons that will help me in optometry school and beyond. I would also like to thank Dr. Ted Erclik and Dr. Marc Johnson whose enthusiasm and positive attitude in lectures were truly inspiring and further fostered my interest in biology.
I will be pursuing my Doctor of Optometry degree at the University of Waterloo School of Optometry and Vision Science starting this fall. My time at UTM helped me realize my passion for the health sciences and helping those in need. As a future optometrist, I hope to help make eye care more accessible for underserved and minority communities. Inspired by my Global Brigades experience at UTM, I also hope to participate in regular service trips to developing countries to help bridge the vast disparities in healthcare that exist worldwide. My older sister is also studying to become an optometrist and we share a common goal to one day open our own practice. Wherever I end up in my optometry career, I aspire to always put my patients first and improve their lives through vision care.
Congratulations, Dayapreet, and all the best in your studies at University of Waterloo School of Optometry and Vision Science!