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Sheridan announces its 2015 Co-op Students of the Year

March 16, 2015

As National Co-op Week (March 16 – 20) gets underway, Sheridan has unveiled its own Co-op Students of the Year from each of its faculties:

Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design:  Danielle Panetta (Illustration)

Faculty of Applied Science and Technology - Computing:  Joao Ricardo D’Errico Chavez (Computer Systems Technology – Software Development and Network Engineering

Faculty of Applied Science and Technology – Engineering:  Chris Mason (Architectural Technology)

Pilon School of Business:  Ali Zaheer (Business Administration – Finance)

Faculty of Applied Health and Community Studies:  Bethany Grady (Early Childhood Leadership)

Of these five honourees, two have been put forward for consideration by CAFCE (Canadian Association for Co-operative Education) and EWO (Education at Work Ontario) for their Co-op Student of the Year Awards.  The two candidates who will represent Sheridan are:

Joao Ricardo D’Errico Chavez, Computer Science Technology – Software Development and Network Engineering

Originally from Brazil, Ricardo earned a law degree before deciding to come to Canada and enroll at Sheridan to pursue his passion for computers and technology.  On his summer Co-op term, he combined two separate experiences.  For the first half, he worked with Translucent Computing as they developed a new storybook app for children.  Ricardo’s skills resulted in him being assigned responsibilities usually reserved for senior developers. With his help, Translucent successfully launched the Terry the Dinosaur app to very positive reviews. 

For the second half of his work term, Ricardo worked with Sheridan’s Undergraduate Research department, and assisted in the development of a special crawler that could appear on a television to easily allow older adults to view content shared by their family members over social media.  The completed project went on to win third place at the Polytechnics Canada Applied Research Showcase in 2014.

Ali Zaheer, Business Administration – Finance

Ali dedicated his fall 2014 Co-op work term to supporting students as part of the Financial Aid office team.  His exemplary performance in this position was characterized by a strong empathy for students and a desire to go above and beyond in assisting them.  “Ali’s excellent approach to student inquiries has led to significant improvements in the levels of customer service provided by the Financial Aid and Awards Office,” says Laurie Jackson, Director.  “Having a student working in a very visible part of the department made the office appear to be more approachable and, with Ali’s hands-on approach, the student experience around OSAP is becoming de-mystified.”

Despite his busy study/work schedule, Ali also took the initiative, with a fellow student, to establish the Sheridan Finance Association, an on-campus club dedicated to helping students achieve career success.  Ali’s commitment and hard work resulted in an on-campus event featuring representatives from TD Canada Trust, who shared resume tips and collected resumes from students.  As a direct result of this event, 16 students were employed by TD within 3 weeks of the event taking place.

The CAFCE and EWO Co-op Student of the Year awards are expected to be announced this week.