Ruth Lebel-Almaw (Elizabeth B. Wright Award ) on the Importance of Courage and Humility

CST Graduate Award winner Ruth Lebel-Almaw

Ruth Lebel-Almaw knows her future will be realized in the field. She will travel and discover, learn more, see more and do more.  Through her lens, the world is massive and culture is everywhere. She wants to be part of making meaningful change.  With the help her Elizabeth B. Wright Award from the Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation, Ruth will attain a Master's in Development Practice from the University of Waterloo in which she will gain professional training on how to better identify and address the challenges of extreme poverty and sustainable development. 

Along with learning in the classroom, she will participate in a placement portion of her program where she will work abroad for four to six months.  Working with the United Nations, a government, or a non-profit organization she will apply the skills she has learned in the classroom to better identify and address the challenges of extreme poverty water and sustainability initiatives. She explains, “We need to go and learn from people and to hear their hopes, their dreams, their needs and create ways to leverage that multiplicity of perspectives to achieve meaningful change, not just in their communities, but right here in Canada as well.” 

Ruth understands the value of different cultural perspectives first-hand, “My parents fled a war to come to Canada. The fact that they gave everything to me and that I can now use that to go and create change back home for them, it just means everything to me,” she explains. Her advice on how to tackle the future: be courageous but also be humble.  She reminds us, “Your life experiences, what you have seen in your life, matters, so apply that. And don't be afraid to go for the big things just because you think, oh I won't get it. You will! Just try! And if you fail, you learn from your mistakes.”