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by Morgan Peters

Since 1988, the Loran Scholars Foundation and its partner universities have led the way with Canada’s largest and most comprehensive undergraduate award. LORAN Scholars are young student with a breadth of academic and extra-curricular interests, entrepreneurial energy, determination, a willingness to take meaningful risks, and a high level of personal autonomy. LORAN funds these exceptional young people to study at Canadian universities, to the benefit of their future and ours.

Loran Scholars are young Canadians who demonstrate exemplary character, a commitment to service in their communities, and leadership potential. Only up to 35 Loran Scholars are chosen each year, from a nationwide pool of over 5,000 applicants. By the time of selection, each scholar has been evaluated in one-on-one and panel interviews, and in social settings by up to 12 different assessors over three months. Every Loran Scholar receives a renewable award valued at up to $100,000 over four years, including a comprehensive enrichment program comprising one-on-one mentorship, leadership retreats, peer-to-peer learning, a summer work experience program, and other opportunities to broaden their perspectives. Loran Scholars are expected to complete a series of summer placements designed to expand their first-hand understanding of the public, private, and non-profit sectors. These experiences challenge scholars to develop valuable tri-sectoral experiences and transferable skills, and to assess their personal and professional goals.

Bilal Ayyache was placed for his public policy internship at the Chamber of commerce. The main objective from this placement is to gain experience with policy-making processes in its partisan and/or nonpartisan forms. Bilal is working on resolutions for the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, competitiveness research and assisting with chamber events and other initiatives. As a former Palestinian refugee who came to Canada just six years ago, Bilal brings a breadth of experiences and has a unique lens from his personal, academic, and professional pursuits.  A third year engineering student at Guelph, he’s honed his project management and research skills through previous work with a private sector consulting company and public engagement with a Toronto-based Arab community center, as well as working closely with the local Business Advisory Council through his leadership on Enactus Canada on campus.  On a more personal level, he’s also a positive person who shares his energy with everyone around him – he enjoyed digging into a summer in policy/advocacy and also keen to explore a new province.

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