A building at Sheridan's Hazel McCallion Campus set against a blue sky

Valedictorian's convocation surprise

Newsroom authorby Teresa BaergJun 8, 2023

Mikaela Delaney poses with her sister and parents while holding a bunch of red roses


When Honours Bachelor of Interaction Design graduate Mikaela Delaney found out she was nominated as the Faculty of Animation, Arts & Design valedictorian in spring 2023, she immediately thought about how fun it would be to surprise her parents with this achievement on convocation day.  

When Mikaela was offered VIP tickets for her family to attend convocation, she invented an excuse for the extra tickets and special seating, saying she had won the extra tickets in a raffle. At the ceremony in June, Mikaela's sister and aunts helped make sure her parents didn't read the programs or see anything with Mikaela’s name on it. Even her friends played a role, shrugging and walking away when questioned about Mikaela’s whereabouts by her parents. 

Sheridan’s social team was on hand to capture the special moment and the tears of joy as the surprise was revealed. And then the family was off to another ceremony that afternoon – to celebrate Mikaela’s sister’s high school graduation, where she too, was valedictorian. 

“Let’s not forget the ones who helped us every step of the way -- the faculty, each other, and our families,” Mikaela said. 

Mikaela is a talented Indigenous UX designer, with faculty noting that she positively impacted every classroom she was a part of at Sheridan. 

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