Humans of SHAD Western 2018

“They are all like family to me.”  - David Zhu, SHAD 2018


A program that hinges on an uncommon purpose among brilliant and passionate individuals is bound to inspire a mosaic unique to the various SHAD campuses; today, we’d like to shed light on those who have immersed themselves in this beautiful program. Over the past few days, myself (Irvin) and my fellow SHAD Ruru have worked on some interviews with other participants. In nearly two weeks, SHAD Western has teased out smiles, laughs, and lasting connections from individuals spread across Canada. A word or phrase cannot encapsulate the entire vastness of talent that exists at SHAD Western 2018, but we hope to evoke a sense of understanding from yourself through these incredible individuals. 


David Zhu, Ottawa, ON


If you were to describe the first 5 SHADs that come to mind with one word, what would it be?


David: People like the Program Managers and Program Assistants and the SHADs have all made this experience amazing so far. If I were to describe them with one word I'd say they are all like family to me. From day one I've felt incredibly included and a lot of people here are like me. I wasn’t expecting to get along with everybody but I was pleasantly surprised.



Kisharne Vashikaran, Toronto, ON

If you were stranded on an island and all you had were spaghetti, marshmallows and string, what would you build?


Kisharne: I feel like since we've done this a ton of times this one should be easy. The first thing I would do with spaghetti, marshmallows and string would be to build a raft and use them to help me write a message. Obviously, I'll be using a ton of triangles cause we all understand that that's what works best.


What do you bring to the table at SHAD?


I bring a positive attitude and the willingness to try new things. I am able to use new experiences to my benefit so that I can learn for the future. To listen to others and hear what they say, and to complete the task to the best of our knowledge.



L-R: Allan Lin (Toronto, ON), Aaron Zhang (Toronto, ON), and Joey Liu (Vancouver, BC)


If money wasn’t a problem what would you do?


Aaron: If money wasn't a problem I think I would still be interested in going into the business and financial professions as that's what I am passionate about and that's what I'd love to do.


Allan: If money wasn't a problem, I would love to try different career fields. I do love math and science so I would probably still study those subjects but then divert into finance in my future as well. I just want to work with other successful people to create products that help the people within our society.


Joey: If money wasn't a problem, I would want to be an entrepreneur who develops ideas that help people in need. Otherwise, I would love to travel around the world and volunteer my time to better other communities. I would definitely try to visit countries in South America just because there's something about it that gravitates towards me.



Akansha Bhargava, Calgary, AB

What motivated you to apply for SHAD?


Akansha: I think what motivated me to apply to SHAD was the opportunity to network with individuals like myself and to be a part of a community that wants to grow, that wants to learn together and work as a team. I think a sense of community brings me pride because I like to see people work together and bring about the change they want to see.



The SHADs of Western 2018 speak of a sense of community, friendship, integrity and we have aspirations to stand at the frontlines of creating change in the world. Through our passions, we inspire each other to work harder and be stronger. SHAD Western has allowed us to get to know each other on a level that cannot be compared. The bonds we have created in the last week and a half are forever. After SHAD we will all be able to work on our goals with perseverance and determination. We are the next generation of physicists, doctors, entrepreneurs and coders. Thanks to SHAD we have the skills to go above and beyond with confidence.


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