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Anonymous donor gives students the opportunity to thrive

Special funding through the Ban Righ Centre has allowed mature and non-traditional women students to pursue professional development activities.

The Ban Righ Foundation continues to explore new ways to help women pursue educational opportunities.

Nasreen Sultana
Nasreen Sultana, a PhD candidate in Education, attended the 2017 American Association for Applied Linguistics conference in Portland, Ore., thanks to funds donated to the Ban Righ Centre to support professional development opportunities for students. (Supplied Photo)

Recognizing that attending conferences can be financially and logistically difficult for students the centre supports, including those with children, or those who have returned to post-secondary studies after an interruption, the Ban Righ Centre proposed a project to a donor to help make these important activities possible. The donor has chosen to be anonymous.

In the past year, the centre’s Professional Development funding has supported several opportunities for students. These activities help students connect with community partners and academics, develop professional skills, and solidify classroom learning.

 Suriya Aktar is completing a Masters in Epidemiology, and is grateful for the opportunity.

“I was really fortunate to use this funding to attend the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) Liver Meeting in October 2017 in Washington DC,” she says. “It was inspiring and energizing to see the passion everyone had to find a cure and improve the life of liver cancer patients. All this would not have been possible without the support the Ban Righ Centre and the donor who provided funds to assist with conference costs.”

Nasreen Sultana, a PhD candidate in Education, was also able to further her professional development with support from this funding. Ms. Sultana had received an invitation to participate at the 2017 American Association for Applied Linguistics in Portland, Ore. 

“I was the first girl of the family to get an education equal to the men of the family,” she says.  “I want my daughter to see me as someone who fights hard to achieve her dreams. The Ban Righ Centre support motivates me to work even harder to achieve my goals.”

The Ban Righ Centre hopes to continue to inspire and support more women to seek out professional development opportunities, knowing that there is some financial support available to help them get to forums where they can meet and work with others in their field, and advance their knowledge and professional networks.

“The Ban Righ Centre is very grateful to all of our donors who understand the additional and sometimes extraordinary challenges faced by mature women students,” says Director Carole Morrison. “This special funding will be in place for another three years, and we are thankful to our benefactor for seeing how significant professional development and networking can be for these students.”

To support all Ban Righ Centre programs and services visit the Give to Queen’s website.