On March 8, the Conestoga community observed International Women’s Day at the Doon campus with a keynote address by Tahani Aburaneh, a Conestoga Alumna of Distinction and Premier’s Award winner for Business.
Tahani Aburaneh sharing her experiences with the Conestoga community gathered at Doon for International Women's Day. Photo credit: Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI)
International Women's Day has been celebrated globally since the early 1900s to recognize the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, and marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.
Hosted by Student Life, Conestoga’s event emphasized this year’s International Women’s Day theme, Be Bold For Change, acknowledging the achievements that bold women have taken to accelerate gender equality.
Dr. Barbara Fennessy, vice-president, external relations at Conestoga, welcomed Aburaneh, a real estate entrepreneur and global advocate for education. She is one of Canada’s leading experts on real estate investment, a best-selling author, speaker and founder of five real estate-based companies. Aburaneh is still an active member of the Conestoga community, working with the Centre for Entrepreneurship (C4E) as a member of the C4E council.
Aburaneh discussed the importance of education and its role in helping individuals find a way out of poverty. Born in a refugee camp in Jordan, she moved to Canada at the age of 15. Committed to education, she finished high school and continued her studies at Conestoga, taking the Business Administration - Management Studies program, which she completed in 1987.
During her address, Aburaneh also spoke about determination and confidence. “It’s about making small changes as you move forward, to gain confidence,” Aburaneh said. She also shared tips to help women build their confidence and become strong leaders that included having courage, being creative, solving problems and leading by example. “Each and every person here is special in their own way. Whatever goal you want in your life, I know you can achieve it if you take little steps and have the courage to go for it.”
Following Aburaneh’s address, Kristy Bradley-McMurtrie, director of Conestoga's security services, presented her with a $500 donation to CARE, an organization that works in 95 countries around the world to support poverty-fighting development and humanitarian aid projects, several focusing on female empowerment. Aburaneh has been an active supporter of the organization and donates all proceeds from her book, Real Estate to Riches, to CARE.
The International Women’s Day Be Bold for Change Award was presented to Kaniesha Lee-Allen, a Practical Nursing student who won a student contest on the idea of Be Bold For Change with her poem Press On. Both the award and donation were presented on behalf of Security Services and Student Life.
Conestoga's Student Life Department organizes events throughout the year, connecting students with opportunities that enhance their classroom experience.
Visit the Student Life website for more information.