U of T Mississauga scholarship brings 8 students from around the world


Published August 22, 2022 at 5:48 pm

u of t mississauga pearson scholars
Photos via University of Toronto Mississauga

Eight students from around the world will study at the University of Toronto Mississauga campus this fall.

The eight students are among 38 awarded the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship. The scholarship helps bring exceptional students from around the world to study at the University of Toronto.

The students are Giorgi Kaikatsishvili from Georgia, Muhammad Masood from Pakistan, Kamsiyochi Davy Onyekere from Nigeria, Sandra Risco Brioso from Ecuador, Paramvir Singh from India, Cynthia Umuringa from Rwanda, Muhammad Qasim Virk from Pakistan, and Ginnie Ai Lee Wee from Singapore.

Kaikatsishivili’s family survived a 2008 bombing by Russian jets during the Russo-Georgian war. That harrowing experience inspired a life-long interest in politics and international affairs in the Georgian-born student. Kaikatsishvili will study social sciences at the UTM campus and says he’s excited to join U of T’s “diverse, all-encompassing international communities.”

Masood, who graduated from Future World School in Lahore, Pakistan, will study commerce.

“Studying at the University of Toronto has been my dream for years,” Masood said.

He was inspired to study commerce while working alongside his father.

“Helping out my father in his side business by recording the entries of sales and purchases, I developed a deep interest in the field of accounting and finance.”

Onyekere says she lives by the words of late civil rights activist and leader Angela Davis: “I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change; I am changing the things that I cannot accept.”

The Trinity College School student cofound and lead the Black Student Alliance at the school. She plans to study life sciences at U of T.

“I hope to one day become a psychiatrist,” Oneykere says. “Mental health and illnesses remain heavily stigmatized in many ethnic communities, and I believe that the first step in de-stigmatization is representation.”

Brioso plans to study life sciences. She is driven by curiosity and a love of learning, especially when the topic is science.

“I never leave a question unanswered or be satisfied with knowing that something ‘is what it is,’” she says. “I always look for more, and truly like to get to the root of the problem or explanation.”

Business student Paramvir Singh joins UTM’s management program.

“I have a deep interest in business studies, economics, and unfolding the complications that lie in the subject of management,” says the scholar from northern India.

Umuringa describes Rwanda as “a country of a thousand hills.”

“Growing up, I have been told of the devastating history that my country had been through, the genocide against the Tutsi in 1994,” says Umuringa. “The psychological toll of the genocide against the Tutsi still encumbers Rwanda.”

She plans to study psychology and use her education to help others.

“Though an irreversible situation, it can be improved, and I want to be part of that evolution,” she says. “With costly psychiatry services and a shortage of psychiatrists, I saw an opening to offer my assistance.”

Virk joins UTM as a student in the humanities program where he plans to focus on learning about policy making and law.

“I’m excited for the opportunity to learn extensively through discourse and use the diversity of both the experiences and the people at the University of Toronto to broaden my academic and personal horizons,” Virk says.

Ginnie Ai Lee Wee joins UTM’s psychology program this fall.

Wee’s lifelong love of science has granted her entry into a global community of women working in STEM. Last year, she attended Hong Kong University’s Junior Neuroscience Academy.

“I am passionate about advocating for gender equality and encouraging girls to pursue their interests in STEM,” Wee says.

INsauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising