Congratulations to fourth-year Communication, Popular Culture and Film (CPCF) student Stephanie Lasica who, along with Rachel Van Herk, received an award from Education at Work Ontario (EWO) for her outstanding efforts.
Presented annually to two university and two college students across the province, the award announcement comes at the beginning of National Co-op and Work Integrated Learning (WIL) week at Brock, which celebrates the many successes and promotes awareness of co-op and experiential learning programs.
Cara Krezek, Brock’s Co-op, Career and Experiential Education (CCEE) Director, said the pair’s top finish kicks off the week’s events with a great example of the calibre of the University’s students as well as the supports they receive.
“Seeing both students recognized at the provincial level is an amazing accomplishment for Brock,” she said. “Their hard work, combined with the support of so many people across campus, has shown just how impactful our co-ordinated efforts to support student success can be.
Lasica earned a provincial nod from EWO while exploring her career options. She took part in CPCF’s This is my Niagara initiative, an eight-month experiential education internship that allows fourth-year students to engage in event planning, digital marketing initiatives, desktop publishing and branding of events for small- and medium-sized businesses.
Thanks to her outstanding efforts co-ordinating events, such as the Grant Dobson Case Competition and Terry O’Malley Lecture, the 21-year-old student from Etobicoke has been awarded the EWO Work-Integrated Learning Student of the Year award.
Along with the prestige of winning a provincial award, Lasica is thankful for the experience she has received during the internship.
“I learned a lot of practical skills about the field of communications, but the exercise also taught me a lot about myself,” she said. “I am now more confident to work with teams and peers in the workplace, and I find it valuable to learn from and alongside people of many different backgrounds to deliver the best result for our projects.”
Lasica, who is preparing to pursue postgraduate studies in public relations, knows the awards she and Van Herk won are reflective of exceptional individual efforts as well as the University’s emphasis on co-op and experiential learning across all Faculties.
“The entire Brock community and all of the resources here on campus have helped me get to this point,” she said. “It’s important that the Experiential Education team is recognized as well as the Co-op team. Having both of our accomplishments on the same level shows that co-op and experiential education are incredible resources for students.”
As she begins her full-time career as a credit reporting analyst at Meridian, Van Herk hopes other students will follow the example she and Lasica have provided by embracing Brock’s co-op and experiential opportunities.
“Taking part in co-op or experiential exercises is the best decision you can make,” she said. “It takes commitment, but it also helps you gain valuable experience and connections and is extremely worth it. By the time you’re done, you’re much more prepared to take your next steps.”
In addition to her EWO honours, Lasica won the University’s Experiential Education Student of the Year award.
All of the award winners will be recognized at the Community Partner Recognition and Appreciation event on April 9.