Redeemer has named Leanna Petrusma as its first Co-op Student of the Year Award winner. Leanna received her certificate and the $500 cash prize at a March 22 ceremony on campus.
While double majoring in Business Management and Psychology, Leanna completed two eight-month co-op work terms and served as student liaison on Redeemer’s Co-operative Education Committee. “Leanna is the sort of student that you want representing co-op at your institution,” says Bruce Wilson, Redeemer’s director of the Centre for Experiential Learning and Careers (CELC). “She is always positive about her experiences and willing to share them with others.”
In Leanna’s first co-op term, she worked with Antec Appraisal Group in their Waterloo office. In her second work term, she joined the City of Hamilton’s Real Estate department. “Leanna has been both our most productive, but also most effective student to date,” noted Raymond Kessler, the City’s manager, real estate.“She has exceeded our expectations, particularly in terms of her initiative and commitment to the team.”
But Leanna’s contributions are not limited to co-op. She achieved the Dean’s Honour list through much of her education. She has held the role of both housing advisor and residence life facilitator. She has been a leader in her church as well as a volunteer with Inner City Outreach Ministry, an organization that gives at-risk children and teens a safe space in Hamilton. Leanna has also been a Business program mentor, supporting new students as they faced unfamiliar challenges in their program. More recently, she helped launch Hamilton’s CityLab initiative, a partnership between McMaster, Mohawk, Redeemer and the City of Hamilton that is bringing students together to solve city issues.
As part of Redeemer’s 2020 initiative, CELC is helping students like Leanna chart a path towards God’s call. Through cooperative education, internships, workshops and individualized career guidance, CELC assists students in exploring where God is leading them past graduation.
The Centre represents Redeemer’s commitment to increasing the number of experiential learning options available across the curriculum. As the classroom curriculum is surrounded by experiential opportunities, students will reap the rewards of mentorship, networking opportunities and workplace experience. As Leanna says herself, “Co-op has given me the confidence needed to pursue a career in an area I am passionate about.”
Redeemer congratulates Leanna on her achievement and wishes her success as she pursues her career post-graduation.