Mark Peter Asfar (Artsci '14)

Peers and friends of Mark frequently describe him as a “silent leader,” yet at the same time he is widely known for his unrestrained tricolour spirit and his infectious enthusiasm for all things Queen’s. In his first year, he joined the Queen’s Debating Union (QDU) -- an involvement that deeply influenced him and all of his future endeavors within the university. Founded in 1843, the Debating Union is Canada’s oldest debating society and holds a special place in Queen’s history. The singular spirit of initiative that Mark possesses was evident and shone through during his tenure in the QDU. As the Social Director and later the Equity Officer of the QDU, he worked hard to create a welcoming environment for all members that fostered growth and positive experiences for a diversity of participants. He developed new strategies that served to successfully retain a higher percentage of novice debaters, which had been a longstanding significant challenge for the club. In 2010, a crisis occurred at the internationally renowned annual Chancellor’s Cup hosted by the QDU. Those involved spoke convincingly of the incredible leadership that Mark exemplified as he took action to rescue the tournament. Additionally, Mark addressed issues of accessibility and equity by revising the QDU policy to ensure that the club balanced principles of equity while still preserving the integrity of passionate debate. Aside from his transformative work in the QDU, Mark has excelled in his work as a campus tour guide for three years and held a variety of positions within the AMS including his current impactful role as the Student Life Administration Manager. Queen’s prides itself on bolstering a supportive climate for all students and Mark has been an important proponent of this culture to those around him since he arrived here. His fellow students offered compelling testimony to the breadth and depth of his commitment to assisting, encouraging, and advocating for others. Queen’s has benefited greatly thanks to Mark’s devotion, leadership, and enthusiasm to enhance the student experience inspired by his enduring love for the school and his peers.