Shivika Parmar

“Ever since high school, I was a very shy kid. Throughout my four years, I learned to grow and tried to come out of the shell slightly as I had moved from India to Canada and experienced bullying due to language barriers at the time. However, it was not until second year of university at Brescia that I had the confidence and dedication to apply for BUCSC and decided to put myself out there. I learned to express my leadership skills due to fellow council members and sophs and family around me being so positive and connected. This opportunity helped me grow as a person, expanded my knowledge of how a council works and allowed me to make friends which I would not have had I not joined. Currently, it is my second year on the BUCSC and I have learned to express my thoughts and gain more confidence than ever before and I have learned that no one can stop you from achieving whatever you want to achieve. Every single step of the way that I have stepped outside of my comfort zone I have learned that trying your best at something is more than enough even if you fail at it. I believe that we should take advantage of the opportunities we get as they can opens many doors for you in terms of growing as a person, learning leadership skills and perhaps with jobs in the future.”


Christina Lord

“I was born in Guyana and grew up in Jamaica, then came here directly from Jamaica. I have learned so much from the environment, from the experiences, from the students themselves, and I have certainly grown a lot. When I first started here, I used to say that the fashions have changed, but the feelings have not, but now the fashions have even come back so we just have to stick with the feelings. I’m the International Program Coordinator, so I work with the International students prior to their arrival to Canada and then throughout their time here with us at Brescia helping them with settling in and overcoming their new challenges. I plan programs for them and that all being said, I firmly believe as does Brescia that the best way for anyone to really transition and feel settled in a new place is if the people who already are there help with that, hence why all of our International programs are open to everyone, not just our International and incoming students. We encourage all students to participate and nothing is exclusive here, which builds a stronger community. I think diversity is one of our strongest values that one can have but is also one of the most challenging because it demands for people to work on it consistently but at the end of the day, it’s well worth working at.”

Paige Mielczarek

“My whole life I’ve been a perfectionist and always had everything planned out. I’ve worked hard and not let anything get in the way of my goals. Although this may sound great in theory, it has lead me to be extremely hard on myself, especially faced with ‘failure’. I’ve learned through my time at university that we can’t always have everything planned out. We don’t always get to be in control of what’s coming next. It’s also important to not compare your journey to anyone else’s because everyone is on their own path. Overall, I’ve learned to just trust in the process and have faith in what life has planned for you.”

Madison Olsen

“Having launched a company last year, I get asked the question ‘what advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?’ regularly.  My main advice for someone is to always have tough skin and an open mind.  As an entrepreneur, you AND your idea receive constant criticism and critiquing.  It’s important to have tough skin and take criticism without letting it impact your work ethic, vision and business.  However, it’s also important to have an open mind and constantly be reaching out for help from people more successful than yourself and to be able to learn from those people and be able to apply those lessons for your own business.  Have an open mind to those who have walked before you in order to build you as a person and your company.”