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Announcing the 2021 Graduation Award Winners

Aujla 009 2048x1656
by Kajill Aujla
Threads Entwined, Stories Unfolded, Futures Imagined (2021). Kajill Aujla (MFA)

By Emily Carr University

Posted on July 07, 2021 | Updated July 15, 2021, 4:43PM

Thirty students received graduation awards in acknowledgement of their exceptional work and accomplishments.

The Class of 2021 had an unprecedented final year, defined by the COVID-19 pandemic. While they were unable to gather in person with their peers, our students continued to develop their creative practices through hybrid and online learning. In addition to a small on-campus exhibition limited to graduating students and their families, their exceptional graduation work can be viewed at The Show 2021, an online interactive platform showcasing their diverse and stunning talents.

Forty-three graduation awards and honourable mentions were bestowed on these students for their remarkable achievements by our esteemed judges. In total, 30 students received awards valued at $26,090 based on their works in the show, their GPAs, or a combination of the two.

Several students received multiple honours:

  • Lauren Thu (BDes) received the DESIS Radical Sustainability Award and the John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Design for her graduation project Hirudinea lampyris (The Firefly Leech).
  • Delaney Soumang (BFA) received the Chick Rice Award for Excellence in Photography and the Saralee James Memorial Award for A Progression in Photography, and was also featured in a CBC Arts story celebrating 2021 Canadian photography graduates.
  • Sydney Pickering (BFA) received an honourable mention for the ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism and Social Justice (Visual Arts) as well as the Vancouver Art Attack Award for Excellence in Visual Arts for her project kwékwa7 skicz7a wi kwimtscen. In addition to a cash award from Vancouver Art Attack, Sydney will also have a solo exhibition at Beaumont Studios B1 Gallery in August.
  • Melina Bishop (MFA), the 2021 Graduation Student Speaker, received honourable mentions for the Opus Art Supplies award and the Renée Van Halm + Pietro Widmer Graduation Award for Visual Arts for her project Find You.
  • Levi Nelson (BFA) received an honourable mention for the ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice (Visual Arts) and the John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Visual Arts for his work, Ancestral Reliquary.
  • Kaiwen Yang (BDes) received an honourable mention for the ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice (Design) and the WA Architects Ltd Master of Design Graduation Award for his project Counterfactual Histories and Speculative Immersion.
  • Kajill Aujla (MFA) received the Renée Van Halm + Pietro Widmer Graduation Award for Visual Arts and an honourable mention for the Opus Art Supplies Award for Threads Entwined, Stories Unfolded, Futures Imagined.

Particularly in these challenging times, we are especially thankful for our donors who make it possible to offer many of our awards in support of emerging artists. Selections were made by juries comprised of industry experts, curators and art collectors. Thirteen students were also selected to receive honourable mentions.

We are grateful to our distinguished jurors and everyone who assisted in the awards process. View the full list of honorees below.

2021 Graduation Award Winners + Honourable Mentions

Master of Design + Bachelor of Design

DESIS Radical Sustainability Award

Lauren Thu (BDes)

Award Recipient

DESIS Radical Sustainability Award

Connor Budd (BDes)

Honourable Mention

Ecological Design Graduation Award

Nicholas Assarasakorn (BDes)

Award Recipient

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Design

Oluwasola Kehinde Olowo-Ake (MDes)

Award Recipient

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Design

Nodin Cutfeet (BDes)

Honourable Mention

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Design

Kaiwen Yang (MDes)

Honourable Mention

ECU Health Design Award for Innovation

Sophia Haelyoung Cho (BDes)

Award Recipient

ECU Health Design Award for Innovation

Diane Shin (BDes)

Honourable Mention

Glenmore Custom Print + Packaging Design Award

Morgan Martino (BDes)

Award Recipient

John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Design

Lauren Thu (BDes)

Award Recipient

John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Awards for Excellence in Design

Tuyen (Leni) Hoang (BDes)

Honourable Mention

WA Architects Ltd Master of Design Graduation Award

Kaiwen Yang (MDes)

Award Recipient

The Wood Co-Op/Forestry Innovation Investment in Wood Design Industrial Design Graduation Award

Chayann Aravena (BDes)

Award Recipient

Bachelor of Media Arts

Basically Good Media Lab Graduation Award

Mana Saei (BMA)

Award Recipient

Sophie Burnett Memorial Award

Maxime Labrecque (BMA)

Award Recipient

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Media

Nanxi Feng (BMA)

Award Recipient

Emily Carr Alumni Association Graduation Award for Community Engagement

Alayna Y (BMA)

Award Recipient

John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Media Arts

Joshua Ralph (BMA)

Award Recipient

The President’s Media Awards for Excellence – Best in 3D Computer Animation

Yejin Kim (BMA)

Award Recipient

The President’s Media Awards for Excellence – Best in 3D Computer Animation

Yeji Kang (BMA)

Award Recipient

The President’s Media Awards for Excellence – Best in 2D or Experimental Animation

Edward Madojemu (BMA)

Award Recipient

The President’s Media Awards for Excellence – Best in Film/Live Action

Yuqian Zhang (BMA)

Award Recipient

The President’s Media Awards for Excellence – Best in New Media/Sound Arts

Graham Connell (BMA)

Award Recipient

VIVO Distribution Award

Ethan Rhodes (BMA)

Award Recipient

Master of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Visual Arts

Doan Truong (BFA)

Award Recipient

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Visual Arts

Sydney Pickering (BFA)

Honourable Mention

ECU Graduation Award for Anti-Racism + Social Justice – Visual Arts

Levi Nelson (BFA)

Honourable Mention

Saralee James Memorial Award

Delaney Soumang (BFA)

Award Recipient

John C. Kerr Chancellor Emeritus Award for Excellence in Visual Arts

Levi Nelson (BFA)

Award Recipient

Landon Mackenzie Graduation Award for Visual Arts

Isabel Data (BFA)

Award Recipient

Landon Mackenzie Graduation Award for Visual Arts

Kaitlyn Herlehy (BFA)

Honourable Mention

Opus Art Supplies Graduation Award BFA

(Hazel) Xianghui Ho (BFA)

Award Recipient

Opus Art Supplies Graduation Award BFA

Vivian Elena Chan (BFA)

Honourable Mention

Opus Art Supplies Graduation MFA

TanTan Hong (MFA)

Award Recipient

Opus Art Supplies Graduation MFA

Melina Bishop (MFA)

Honourable Mention

Opus Art Supplies Graduation MFA

Kajill Aujla (MFA)

Honourable Mention

Mary Plumb Blade Award

Kristy Carse (BFA)

Award Recipient

The Chick Rice Award for Excellence in Photography

Delaney Soumang (BFA)

Award Recipient

Renée Van Halm + Pietro Widmer Graduation Award for Visual Arts

Kajill Aujla (MFA)

Award Recipient

Renée Van Halm + Pietro Widmer Graduation Award for Visual Arts

Melina Bishop (MFA)

Honourable Mention

Vancouver Art Attack Award for Excellence in Visual Arts

Sydney Pickering (BFA)

Award Recipient

Vancouver Art Attack Award for Excellence in Visual Arts

Esteban Pérez (MFA)

Honourable Mention

Judith Warren Painting Award

Darius Kian (BFA)

Award Recipient