May 1, 2023
2023 Graduating Student Award winners announced
UCalgary Law is pleased to announce the winners of our Class of 2023 Graduating Student Awards.
The Campbell McLaurin Achievement Award: Mackenzie Cook
This award is presented to a graduating student who has not only achieved high academic standing, but has also made a significant contribution to the life of the law school during the three years of their JD degree.
During her time at UCalgary Law, Mackenzie volunteered and worked for Student Legal Assistance, first as a volunteer caseworker in her first year, then as a group leader and summer employee in her second year, and finally as the Student Director in her third year. According to one nomination, "No one in the Class of 2023 has been as devoted to SLA and access to justice as Mackenzie. The Calgary community is lucky to have her tireless service over the past three years."
Mackenzie participated in the law school's mooting program, first as the researcher for the McIntyre Moot in her second year, and as a mooter for the Gale Cup in her third year. Additionally, she was involved in planning the 2023 BLG Trial Competition.
Mackenzie was also a strong advocate for her classmates. When a provincial court clerkship course was cancelled due to the pandemic, she came up with a creative solution in an effort to resurrect the course offering. In her proposal, she suggested that the university assume greater responsibility for the course to reduce the burden on the judges. Her proposal was accepted and resulted in the class being resurrected.
"Mackenzie displayed perseverance, creativity, and advocacy skills that her classmates and future students will benefit from," wrote one nominator.
The Dean Michael Wylie Social Responsibility Award: Saliha Haq
This award is presented to a graduating student who has made a significant contribution to the understanding or resolution of social or human rights issues while acquiring a legal education.
Saliha was the law school's Students' Union representative and worked tirelessly to create a more inclusive environment within the Faculty of Law. She created the new AMANAH Muslim Advocacy & Leadership Scholarship and advocated for the need for a multi-faith space in the law school. Additionally, Saliha was instrumental in organizing the inaugural Faculty of Law Iftar which brought together a diverse group of people and honoured the month of Ramadan.
According to one nominator, "The work she has done in her time as a student is invaluable and not only sets an amazing example for incoming students, but shows us the power of belief in one’s mission and the difference we truly can make as law students and members of the legal community. Her efforts have helped create an environment where diverse first-year students have a sense of community and feel as though they are heard, where they are not the “only one” in their classes. She has advocated for the equal right of minorities within our law school and actually brought about many changes. The differences she made ought to be celebrated and rewarded as her efforts have made a tangible difference for the Faculty of Law and her advocacy for a diverse legal community within our law school has fostered a stronger and more united student body."
The Grant McKibben Prize: Carter Lindsay
Created in honour and memory of a highly popular member of the Class of 1979, this prize is presented to a graduating student who epitomizes the energy and spirit of the UCalgary Law community.
"Two words characterized the UCalgary Law community, and that is innovation and collaboration," wrote one nominator. "Carter embodies both of these."
Carter played a key role in bringing about improvements to the student lounge, creating a welcoming space for law students. He was dedicated to maintaining the community and building a community between classes, while bringing fun, maturity and a welcoming atmosphere to all law school events.
Carter stepped into a leadership role in the newly created position of Vice President of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion with the Society of Law Students during the pandemic, ensuring equitable treatment within the faculty and supporting EDI initiatives, defining the new role and equipping future students to succeed in the position.
Carter has also been very involved with UCalgary Law's chapter of OUTLaw since his first year, working to ensure that LGBTQ+ students are represented on campus while creating initiatives for support during law school and afterwards in the legal profession.
"Carter embodies the spirit of this award with all of his efforts on campus and the impacts he has made with a broad range of students."