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Indigenous Studies

A group of students in an indigenous canoe paddling along the Otonabee river
Chanie Wenjack School for Indigenous Studies

Indigenous Studies

Hydro One Scholarship Recognizes Trent Student’s Commitment to Indigenous Community

Rhode Thomas dedicated to inspiring Indigenous student success

Having just completed his first-year as a student in Trent’s School of Business, with a specialization in Niigaaniiwin: The Art of Leading, Rhode Thomas ’16 is equipped with a devout work ethic and commitment to Indigenous student success. Hoping to inspire those around him, his efforts serve as a shining example.

In celebration of National Aboriginal Day on June 21, Hydro One recognized Mr. Thomas’s academic performance and commitment to community by awarding him the Leonard S. (Tony) Mandamin Scholarship – a $5,000 prize presented to only 14 students across Ontario.

 “This scholarship represents that my academic ambitions reflect a strong work ethic and powerful desire to succeed while motivating and inspiring other Indigenous students,” Mr. Thomas said, reflecting on the award, adding that his experiences as treasurer of the Trent University Native Association (TUNA) and as the Indigenous student commissioner of the Trent Central Student Association (TCSA) were key to securing the prestigious scholarship. The prize is awarded annually to First Nations, Métis and Inuit post-secondary students residing in Ontario who are enrolled in electricity-related undergraduate programs

Invited to apply for a paid developmental work term, he landed a summer internship within Indigenous Relations at Hydro One which develops and maintains relationships with First Nations and Métis communities in Ontario.

“The electrical industry is completely new to me and I'm taking the opportunity to fully explore it,” he said. “Business is such a diverse field.  I look forward to continuing to explore opportunities to further enhance my skills and experience as I continue my postsecondary journey at Trent.”

As a First Nations student living in Peterborough away from home, Mr. Thomas credits his mother for teaching him the importance of education. He was further inspired to study at Trent while working with the Aboriginal Professional Association of Canada (APAC).

“I decided to pursue my undergraduate degree at Trent University to better equip myself and have a greater capacity to help advance the recognition of Indigenous success.” Mr. Thomas hopes to pursue a Master’s degree in Policy Studies. 

Posted on July 20, 2017