A sense of relief spread through Yalda Modarres-Sadeghi when she received the news that she could continue to meet her academic goals with a reduced financial burden.
Yalda is the first recipient of our newest education award—The Minerva Foundation Award for BC Women in Digital Media, which supports women enrolled full-time in Simon Fraser University’s Master’s program in digital media.
“After receiving the incredible news that this award was being gifted to me, I realized that my dreams were coming true,” says Yalda.
Recipients for the award are chosen based on their desire to make a difference in their work and community and beat the odds to create a better future for themselves.
“Yalda has always known what she wants,” says her mother, Shahla. “Even when she was a little girl in our home country of Iran, she would rush home from school and shout, ‘I must go to university!’”
According to Yalda, who immigrated to BC with her parents in 2005, digital media enables her to “create a world where there is no barrier for people to connect and share their ideas”.
Yalda came across the Minerva Foundation while researching scholarships for her tuition.
“I was taken by the title the Minerva Foundation for BC Women,” she says. “I knew that as a young woman, I could express my feelings and my thoughts in an environment where women are entitled and respected.”
As the only BC organization that gets matching funds from educational institutions, the Minerva Foundation works to match donors with the school, program or criteria of their choice. So when Global Relay stepped forward to donate $1,000 towards the award, the Center for Digital Media matched their donation.
Global Relay, a world leader in cloud-based messaging, archiving and search technology for the financial sector, is no stranger to supporting organizations that assist women in entrepreneurship, community involvement and mentoring. At the hub of the corporation is President and General Counsel, Shannon Rogers, who was named number one among Canada’s top 100 female entrepreneurs, and awarded the 2013 Influential Women in Business Award. Impressed with the programs and the work the Minerva Foundation does, she has developed a relationship with the organization and supports wherever she can.
Yalda’s journey is just beginning, and while she encourages her friends in Iran to never let go of their dreams, she is filled with even greater determination to achieve her own.
The Minerva Foundation is grateful to all those donors, such as Global Relay, who assist women in achieving their educational goals. If you or someone you know would like to make a donation that creates immediate and long-lasting change, please contact us today.
Emily Hostetter, Education Awards Manager
(604) 683-7635 ext. 227