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Eight trailblazing students win youth achievement award

November 20, 2014 — 

Eight University of Manitoba students will be honoured at the Manitoba Aboriginal Youth Achievement Awards tonight, Nov. 20.

The Manitoba Aboriginal Youth Achievement Awards is held annually to recognize the outstanding accomplishments of Indigenous youth in culture, employment, traditional lifestyle, business and academic excellence. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the awards.

The U of M winners are:

  • Alana Robert, Arts – Senior Community Involvement Award
  • Zachariah Unrau, Asper School – Personal Achievement Award
  • Chantelle Chartier, Health Careers Access Program – Health North    Award
  • Brayden Curtis Harper, Asper School – Business Entrepreneurship Award
  • Karine Sabourin, Asper School – Athletic Senior Award
  • Taylor Morriseau, Science – Academic Senior Award
  • Ashley Richard, Asper School – 20th Anniversary Award
  • Ashley Monture, Science – Health South Award


Four of the U of M students receiving awards tonight are from Aboriginal Business Education Partners program (ABEP) in the Asper School of Business. Since MAYAA’s inception in 1994, 21 ABEP students have received a MAYAA award.


More on the students


Alana Robert, Metis, third-year Faculty of Arts student

Alana has received numerous awards including the YMCA-YWCA Woman of Distinction Award in 2012. She most recently was awarded the Oshki Annishinabe Nigaaniwake Award.

In 2013, Alana founded the Justice for Women Student Group at the University of Manitoba where she advocates for critical human rights specifically affecting women including missing and murdered Aboriginal women.


Zach Unrau

Zachariah Unrau

Zachariah Unrau, Metis, ABEP student in the Asper School

In 2012 Zachariah was the recipient of the GE Scholar-Leaders Program in Canada. The GE Scholar-Leaders Program is an elite scholarship provided to the brightest Aboriginal students in pursuit of an education in either business or engineering. There were only two recipients chosen from universities across Canada.

Zachariah is actively involved with the Association of Aboriginal Commerce students and is a vital senior mentor in the ABEP program. He is working towards being a trailblazer for Aboriginal people.


Chantelle Chartier, Metis, Health Careers Access Program

Chantelle Chartier

Chantelle Chartier

Chantelle’s long-term goal is to graduate with her Bachelor of Nursing Degree. She has maintained a 4.33 grade point average and is on the Dean’s Honour list.

She plans to return to Thompson to pursue a career in nursing when she has completed her degree.


Brayden Curtis Harper, Peguis First Nation, ABEP student in the Asper School

Brayden Harper

Brayden Harper

He took a semester abroad to further his studies in social enterprise development and corporate social responsibility at the University of Leeds in West Yorkshire, England.  His areas of interest are international business, marketing, sustainability, and Aboriginal entrepreneurship.

Brayden volunteers with seniors at Park Manor, with an at risk boys group at Siloam Mission and at Winnipeg Harvest.

He also was a vendor this past summer at the West Kildonan Farmers’ Market and gave back to the community by using the proceeds from his business to purchase food donations for Winnipeg Harvest for this fall.


Karine Sabourin

Karine Sabourin

Karine Sabourin, Metis, ABEP student in the Asper School

Karine was recognized with achieving ABEP’s top grade point average for the 2013/14 academic year. She maintained a 4.07 GPA across 85 credit hours.

Karine played on the under 19 Team Canada West National ringette team at the World Ringette Championships.

She also volunteers as a coach and assistant coach for elementary and middle year’s school teams. Karine’s commitment to academics, athletics and community is evident in her level of commitment.


Taylor Morriseau, Cree, Peguis First Nation, Faculty of Science with double honours in Microbiology and Genetics

She has received numerous scholarships and awards, including the recently granted Oscar Vong Memorial Scholarship, given to her for achieving the the highest academic standing among second-year microbiology students. Taylor also achieved the highest academic standing among all Aboriginal students at the University of Manitoba.

She is active in “Let’s Talk Science” and travels to schools and communities to increase awareness in science to promote budding scientists.

Taylor plans to complete a PhD in Medical Microbiologist and work in research.


Ashley Richard

Ashley Richard

Ashley Richard, Metis, ABEP student in the Asper School

Ashley has overcome huge obstacles in her teens including close family deaths, homelessness and a serious accident from which she recovered.

After the death of her grandmother, she returned home to Winnipeg and began attending the Asper School of Business.

She won the Pauline & Roger Presland scholarship for $15,000/year and still works part time as she works toward her commerce degree.

This coming January she will be studying in France as part of the Asper International Exchange Program.

Hear her story on CBC Radio, or read it on CBC.


Ashley Monture, Mohawk and Cree, Six Nation of Grand River, second-year Faculty of Sciences student

Ashley Monture

Ashley Monture

Ashley is in her second year of studies with the Health Careers Access Program at the University of Manitoba and in 2014 she was on the Dean’s Honour List. She plans to go to medical school and work in northern communities, where her dad practiced, and to continue the traditional healing work of her mother as well.

In addition to her passion for medicine, she is also a volunteer in the community. She has been an active participant in Sundance, Sweatlodge and Longhouse Ceremonies since she was a young child.


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