McMaster Engineering celebrates graduation of more than 1,200 students and two hon doc recipients – Faculty of Engineering

McMaster Engineering celebrates graduation of more than 1,200 students and two hon doc recipients

Rows of graduates stand in the seats of First Ontario Concert Hall
By Joanne Lee

Mac Eng and its extended community gathered to commemorate the achievements and next steps of the Class of 2024 at two ceremonies at FirstOntario Concert Hall on June 11.

Heather Sheardown, Dean of Engineering, opened the ceremony, reminding graduates to embrace challenges that they will face along their journeys post-graduation.

Heather Sheardown, Dean of Engineering

“Subscribe to the Luke Bryan philosophy He says wisdom in your teens would be a lot less fun. Part of the fun and experience is in the journey, and I hope you look back on your Mac Eng journey as a time of learning, growth and fun.”

Heather Sheardown

Sheridan Fong, Software and Biomedical Engineering  

Fong, the first iBioMed valedictorian, delivered a powerful speech to her fellow graduates at the morning ceremony.  

Sheridan Fong, first iBioMed valedictorian, and recent graduate from the Software and Biomedical Engineering program.

“Most of us here will never change the world, and that’s the reality of it, or we will knowingly or by accident change someone’s world through small ordinary acts of kindness, mercy and grace. We all have the ability to change someone’s world as ordinary people doing ordinary things which can have extraordinary impacts. 

Sheridan Fong

Kemi Odujinrin, Computer Engineering  

Odujinrin, a computer engineering graduate and valedictorian, addressed her fellow graduates with a heartfelt speech at the afternoon ceremony. 

Kemi Odujinrin, valedictorian and recent graduate from the Computer Engineering program.

“For four plus years, we needed McMaster, and now, for the rest of our lives, the world is going to need us. Wherever the journey now leads you, whether that’s a full-time position or grad school or simply a trip to Europe, remember we all started with different stories, we all journeyed along different paths, but we all lead with the essence of engineering in our hearts. All I have now are these three words, WE DID IT.” 

Kemi Odujinrin

Suzanne Kresta ’92, ’24

Suzanne Kresta earned her PhD at McMaster in 1992 and is an avid researcher and expert in Industrial Mixing. She was the first female Dean of Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan and will become the first female Dean of Engineering at the University of Prince Edward Island this fall. She has led the development of RE-engineered, a program to support student success and amplify the fun in engineering, which has contributed to the pursuit of a more inclusive future in education for Indigenous and Black engineers in Canada.

Suzanne Kresta, Dean of Engineering at University of Saskatchewan and at the University of Prince Edward Island

“In the end, my message is pretty simple. Work hard, have fun, believe in your dreams and take joy in this remarkable journey we call life.”  

Suzanne Kresta

Howard Shearer ’77, ’24

Howard Shearer is the chairman of Hitachi Canada Ltd., a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board in the Faculty of Engineering at McMaster since 2014 and served on McMaster’s Board of Governors and the McMaster Alumni Association Board for seven years. He is a global leader and a community builder who volunteers his time to causes that promote diversity and inclusion and hopes to break through racial barriers.  

Howard Shearer, member of Dean’s Advisory Board in Faculty of Engineering at McMaster

“Most important, as you succeed, remember it started here at McMaster…You never know where your journey will take you or when it will bring you back full circle as this did for me.”  

Howard Shearer

Shayna Earle, Chemical and Biomedical Engineering 

(Right) Shayna Earle receiving the President’s Award of Excellence in Student Leadership

Shayna Earle, one of the recipients of this year’s President’s Award of Excellence in Student Leadership, shared the significance of this honour.   

“Receiving this award is an incredible honour and a testament to my time at McMaster and the support I’ve received throughout my journey. It symbolizes not only my achievements but also the collective efforts of everyone who has inspired and guided me. I’m deeply grateful and excited for what lies ahead. 

Shayna Earle

David Pawelko, Civil Engineering Infrastructure Bachelor of Technology

(Right) David Pawelko, receiving the MAPS Gold Medal Award

David Pawelko, the recipient of the MAPS Gold Medal Award this year, has worked for the Region of Waterloo for the past seven years, building opportunities for more affordable housing within the region to support the growing community. Pawelko hopes to continue pursuing his engineering journey with the Region of Waterloo as a Project Manager.   

 Thomas Sydor, Materials Science & Engineering  

(Right) Thomas Sydor, receiver the Ontario Professional Engineers Foundation for Education Gold Medal Award

Thomas Sydor, the recipient of the Ontario Professional Engineers Foundation for Education Gold Medal, has completed two placements as a research assistant at the Centre for Automotive Materials and Corrosion and a placement as a co-op lab technician at Burloak Technologies. Sydor has always been dedicated to guiding his peers while simultaneously learning from them as well. He looks forward to continuing his journey at McMaster in the fall, working towards a master’s degree in Materials Engineering. 

Gallery of photos of Convocation 2024