Global adventures: QEII Scholars set for summer internships

- May 22, 2015

Dal's QEII Scholars (left-to-right): Elsa Tokunaga, Shelby Jamieson, Rachel Morgan, Jeremy Ryant, Braden Kingdon. (Bruce Bottomley photo)
Dal's QEII Scholars (left-to-right): Elsa Tokunaga, Shelby Jamieson, Rachel Morgan, Jeremy Ryant, Braden Kingdon. (Bruce Bottomley photo)

They’re off to see the world.

Dal’s first outgoing Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholars are departing this month to undertake internships in Uganda, Tanzania and the Caribbean. They represent the inaugural class of the new program, designed to develop a new generation of community leaders and academics with bright and creative minds and a commitment to bettering their country.  The program will also bring students from the Caribbean and Uganda to take graduate programs at Dalhousie.

The national QEII Scholars program is a partnership between Universities Canada (formerly the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada), the Community Foundations of Canada and the Rideau Hall Foundation.

Five outstanding Dal students will be spending their summer on research internships this year. Braden Kingdon is one of them. A student in Human Health and Performance doing work in recreation management and community engagement, Braden is on his way to Tanzania to do work in the field of HIV/AIDS.

“It’s really important to target young people when it comes to education because you’re not having to correct bad information,” says Braden, who will be working to reduce stigma and educating underrepresented groups. Braden is most excited about the opportunity to learn about the extremes in low socio-economic rural areas and bring back lessons learned to Halifax.

Elsa Tokunaga, who’s completing a double major in Economics and Environment, Sustainability and Society, will spend time in Barbados and Dominica conducting socio-economic monitoring research. She will begin her time in Barbados developing workshops to familiarize local partners with data analysis. She will then travel to Dominica where she will be doing data collecting.

“It’s going to be really great to get a real experience,” she says. “I feel like a lot of students go to these places and stay in resorts. I won’t be a tourist.”

Research opportunities

Shelby Jamieson studies Agricultural Business on Dalhousie’s Agricultural Campus. She’s headed to Kampala, Uganda to work with a food security NGO called SEATINI. She’ll do workshops in agriculture, conduct research, and take on some social media responsibilities.

“I understand that when I get back I’m going to be doing a lot of public engagement here. I think it will be cool to bring back what I learned.”

The final two Dal QEII Scholars are Jeremy Ryant and Rachel Morgan. Jeremy, who heard about the program through a TA in one of his courses, is an honours student in Political Science. Rachel has just completed her honours in Political Science and International Development Studies. The two students will both be working in Kampala, Uganda with a food security organization called the Food Rights Alliance. They’re both excited to immerse themselves in a new culture and learn from others.

Two of the students, Jeremy and Elsa, were also chosen to be among a small number of QEII Scholars from across Canada to attend a recent banquet sponsored by the Rideau Hall Foundation in Ottawa. The selected students not only had a great dinner, but were invited to a private meeting with the Governor General and former Prime Minister Jean Chretien.

You can keep tabs on the students' travels online: three of them (Jeremy, Rachel and Shelby) will be blogging about their experiences. Those wishing to learn more about the QEII Scholars program can email


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