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New Graduates & New Chancellor: 2019 Convocation Highlights at Trent University

May 31, 2019

University to install Stephen Stohn ’66 as 12th Chancellor and celebrate successes of over 1,630 graduates, including highest-ever number of graduate students, during ceremonies June 3 to 7

Trent University students smiling and waving at convocation.

Several milestones will be celebrated as Trent University hosts the 2019 convocation ceremonies the week of June 3, including the first time one alumnus chancellor is succeeded by another alumnus chancellor, and the conferring of degrees on the largest number of graduate students in the University’s history.

Convocation ceremonies at the Peterborough campus run from Monday, June 3 to Friday, June 7. On Friday, the University will install Canadian entertainment industry powerhouse Stephen Stohn ’66 as its 12th chancellor, taking over the distinguished role from fellow alumnus Dr. Don Tapscott ’66.

Across both campuses, the University is honouring over 1,800 member of the 2019 graduating class. In Peterborough, over the course of five days and nine ceremonies, degrees will be conferred on more than 1,630 graduates, including the first cohort of Biomedical Science graduates as well as 152 graduate students – the largest class in the School of Graduate Studies to date. During the 2019 Peterborough convocation ceremonies, Trent will also honour several of its most accomplished students with special awards:

  • The Governor General’s Academic Medal to reward scholastic merit was established in 1873 by the Earl of Dufferin who served as Governor General of Canada from 1872 to 1878. The Silver Medal, presented to the undergraduate student with the highest academic standing, is awarded to Brandon Leipner-Johns, Mathematics. The Gold Medal for highest academic standing in graduate programs is awarded to Moritz Ingwersen, Ph.D. in Cultural Studies.
  • The President's Medal, established in 2009, will be awarded to three graduate students who achieved academic excellence in several degree programs: Sean Antaya, M.A. Canadian & Indigenous Studies; Geoffrey Crane, M.Sc. Applied Modelling & Quantitative Methods; and Vaughn Mangal, Ph.D. Environmental & Life Sciences.
  • The Symons Medal, established in 1972 in honour of Trent’s founding president T.H.B. Symons, will be awarded to four undergraduate students in the Honours program who achieve high overall standing on graduation: Milinda Yimesghen, B.A. Economics; Matthew Hebb, B.A. Mathematics; Angus Sullivan, B.Sc. Chemistry; and Andrea VanDerHerberg, Bachelor of Business Administration.
  • The Bagnani Medal, established in 1986 to honour the late founding faculty member Professor Gilbert Bagnani, will be awarded to two students in the General program who achieve high overall standing on graduation: Lorraine Andrew-Kingdon, B.A. Indigenous Studies and Lavanyaa Chandrasekaram, Bachelor of Arts & Science.

Six outstanding individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to society will receive an honorary degree, the University’s highest honour. Recipients include: Mae Katt, nurse practitioner and justice advocate (June 3 – afternoon ceremony); Mark Angelo, conservationist and educator (Tuesday, June 4 – morning ceremony); journalist Michael Cooke (June 4 – afternoon ceremony); Cindy Blackstock, activist and scholar (June 5 – morning ceremony); Jeannette Corbiere Lavell, community worker and educator (June 5 – afternoon ceremony); and Alice Klein, social activist and writer (June 6 – morning ceremony). Outgoing chancellor, Dr. Tapscott, will deliver the convocation address on Thursday, June 6 at the afternoon ceremony.

Watch the live web-cast of the ceremonies at or follow @TrentAlumni and @TrentUniversity on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and add your own comments and photos during the ceremonies.

A detailed breakdown of each convocation ceremony in Peterborough is as follows: 

Monday, June 3, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees will be conferred. Mae Katt, a nurse practitioner and justice advocate, will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Degrees will be conferred on the first cohort of Biomedical Science graduates as well as Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and Biology. Dr. Erica Nol will be presented with the Distinguished Research Award and conservationist Mark Angelo will receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Degrees will be conferred for Forensic Science and joint major Forensic degrees, Arts & Science, Chemistry, Chemical Physics, Computing Systems, Computing Systems & Physics, Information Systems, Mathematics, Mathematical Physics, and Physics. Dr. Wesley Burrwill receive the Symons Award for Excellence in Teaching. Journalist Michael Cooke will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters degree.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Degrees will be conferred for Social Work, Psychology and Sociology. Cindy Blackstock will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Degrees will be conferred for School of Environment programs including Environmental Science/Studies, Anthropology, Archaeology, Ecological Restoration, Environmental Chemistry, Geography, Indigenous Environmental Studies, Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems, and Water Science. Degree will also be conferred for Indigenous Studies. Foundations of Indigenous Learning diplomas will also be presented. Jeannette Corbiere Lavell will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree. Miles Ecclestone will receive the Eminent Service Award.

Thursday, June 6, 2019 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Arts degrees will be conferred for Journalism, Ancient Greek & Roman Studies, Canadian Studies, Cultural Studies, English Literature, French Studies, Gender & Women’s Studies, History, Media Studies, and Philosophy. Alice Klein sill receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

Thursday, June 6, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Degrees will be conferred for Business Administration and joint majors with Business, Economics, International Development Studies, International Political Economy and Political Studies. Certificates in Human Resource Management and Marketing and Entrepreneurship will also be presented. Chancellor Dr. Don Tapscott will give the convocation address.

Friday, June 7, 2019 – 10:00 a.m. ceremony:

Bachelor of Education degrees will be conferred.

Friday, June 7, 2019 – 2:00 p.m. ceremony:

Doctor of Philosophy, Master of Arts, Master of Science and Master of Education degrees will be conferred. Stephen Stohn ‘66 will be installed as chancellor and will make a convocation address.

Detailed information on the 2019 convocation ceremonies, including bios of honorary degree recipients and faculty/staff award winners, ceremony details and maps, can be found at

A distinct convocation ceremony honouring graduates of Trent University Durham GTA took place in Oshawa on Thursday, May 30, 2019.

About Trent University
One of Canada's top universities, Trent University was founded on the ideal of interactive learning that's personal, purposeful and transformative. Consistently recognized nationally for leadership in teaching, research and student satisfaction, Trent attracts excellent students from across the country and around the world. Here, undergraduate and graduate students connect and collaborate with faculty, staff and their peers through diverse communities that span residential colleges, classrooms, disciplines, hands-on research, co-curricular and community-based activities. Across all disciplines, Trent brings critical, integrative thinking to life every day. Today, Trent's unique approach to personal development through supportive, collaborative community engagement is in more demand than ever. Students lead the way by co-creating experiences rooted in dialogue, diverse perspectives and collaboration. In a learning environment that builds life-long passion for inclusion, leadership and social change, Trent's students, alumni, faculty and staff are engaged global citizens who are catalysts in developing sustainable solutions to complex issues. Trent's Peterborough campus boasts award-winning architecture in a breathtaking natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, just 90 minutes from downtown Toronto, while Trent University Durham Greater Toronto Area, delivers a distinct mix of programming in the east GTA.

For more information contact:
Kathryn Verhulst-Rogers, manager, Marketing & Communications, Trent University, 705-748-1011 x6182 or

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