Surrey’s most outstanding youth are being recognized next week by the Surrey Board of Trade.
Surrey’s Top 25 under 25 are being honoured on Tuesday, May 29 at Eaglequest Golf Course during a dinner event from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The event will celebrate the initiatives of Surrey’s youth under the age of 25.
The winners were chosen based upon an analysis of their business or community achievements, leadership ability, community involvement, professional achievements and uniqueness of their business or community projects.
“Their community and entrepreneurial spirit were showcased through their nominations, ” said Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade.
“We have amazing talent in these winners who will take our businesses now and in the future to amazing heights.”
The board of trade has been reaching out to Surrey’s youth for some time, Huberman added.
“At the Surrey Board of Trade, it is in our mandate to grow our business community by instilling in our youth entrepreneurial support and spirit – and for them to be an active part of Surrey.”
The winners are:
Ivneet Bains – 20
Ivneet is the co-owner and founder of Math4Me Learning Inc., a social entrepreneurship program helping students achieve university scholarships through tutoring and mentorship. Ivneet is very involved in his community and has received multiple awards and scholarships, including the 2012 Sikh Foundation of Canada Award and the SFU Gordon M Shrum Scholarship.
Megan Carey – 23
Megan works for Envision Financial as a member of their Employee Engagement Team, providing leadership and coaching to employees while attending Douglas College to complete her Professional Writing Diploma. She has recently begun her practicum at the Fraser Health Authority. Megan has been a passionate community volunteer since the age of 15. She has volunteered for Canucks Place for Kids, White Rock/South Surrey Community Foundation at the Vintage Affair Gala.
Michael Cheng – 22
Michael is the founder of WittyCookie, a web design company dedicated to supporting the growth of local small businesses. He also owns QC Productions. Michael was named Runner-Up as SFU Student Entrepreneur of the Year in 2011. He is also a founder of International Student Connection, which was named Best New Student Business in 2009. He is also the founder of TEDxSFU, an annual conference aimed at inspiring an audience of students and professionals at SFU.
Michelle Chen – 17
Michelle has, upon recognizing key needs in North Surrey Secondary’s growing community, strived to satisfy the needs for unified communication, connecting and acknowledging student achievements and inspiring diversity, by initiating her Spartans Speak Magazine project. She also serves on NSS’s Interact Rotary Club and operates a part-time graphic and web interface design company. Michelle recently held the position of Design Manager for the Tzu Chi Academy of Humanistic Studies’ graduation yearbook.
Brock is the owner and founder of XNS Technology Group Inc., a web-hosting brand that provides services to end users and enterprises. With a $500 loan from his parents, Brock started this internet based business from his bedroom a few years ago. To date, the company includes a team of 7 contract workers, which has served over 10,000 clients in more than 70 countries.
Andrea Danyluk – 23
Andrea is a third year Kwantlen Polytechnic University business student. She sits on Kwantlen’s President’s Ambassadorial Team – a group of high performing students – and has taken a leadership role in its initiative to raise $12,000 that will establish an endowment fund for student scholarships. She co-chaired the second annual fundraiser for the group and tripled the funds raised, while leading a team of 20.
Daryl Dela Cruz -16
Daryl has been involved in various transit advocacy movements and is an avid participator in community consultations, often present at important meetings between community members. At 15, Daryl founded the SkyTrain for Surrey Initiative, an active organization that is advocating for SkyTrain rapid transit in Surrey over at-grade Light Rail Transit (LRT), citing business cases and perceptional flaws in LRT proposals. He also recently launched the Progressive Surrey Transit Coalition, an advocacy organization with the goal of supporting progressive transit options for a fast-growing Canadian city with transit needs and an uncertain future. The Coalition is launching two petitions that will call for a review of funding cancellations that were to bring forward service increases and the first competitive rapid transit options in the City of Surrey.
Julian DeSchutter – 24
Julian is the founder of the DeSchutter Group. After identifying that there was an opportunity to gain valuable experience as a student in the mining industry, Julian sought out opportunities that would allow him to gain the most experience, as well as set himself up for success upon graduation. Instead of becoming an employee, Julian developed his own consulting company, allowing him to grow an organization, while gaining experience in many facets of the mining industry. Julian took bold steps to win the trust of a number of CEOs, many of which are held in high regard, and was not afraid to step in and lead when needed. Since then, he has been given work-related opportunities to travel throughout the United States, Mexico, and Europe.
Ravneet Dhaliwal – 20
Ravneet is the Director of Student Affairs at Math4Me Learning Inc. Ravneet currently manages 400 students and 60 employees at two branches in Surrey and Vancouver. Ravneet received more than $65,000 in scholarships upon high school graduation. She was awarded the Governor General’s Medal of Academic Excellence. Her desire to encourage youth to actively get involved in the community led her to create a not for profit organization along with three of her friends called “Youth Taking A Stand for Change”. She spearheaded a project called ‘Heritage’ to connect the present generation with their roots. She currently attends SFU.
Saif Eshaq – 23
Saif has been volunteering for the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Surrey accompanying other volunteers during their home visits to low-income families. He is able to advocate for their needs through interpreting for families, informing them of Canadian culture and society, encouraging families while adjusting to Canada and referring families to programs and services available in the community.
Kelsey Filion – 25
Kelsey is active in both business and athletics. She is a coach and volunteer for youth soccer camps with the Surrey Breakers Association and is also a Director on the Kwantlen Polytechnic University Alumni Association. She is currently a consultant for Investors Group Financial.
Afraj Gill – 20
After graduating high school with 100 percent in all seven of his courses and receiving multiple scholarships, Afraj is currently pursuing his studies in Business Administration at Simon Fraser University. Afraj is a role model for the community, with countless hours of volunteerism on his resume and a series of personal and professional accomplishments including earning his Glider and Private Pilots licenses, and the Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada Medal of Merit.
Brenden Graham – 23
As part of the Surrey School District, Brenden is devoted to helping youths at risk of gang involvement through the Surrey Wrap Project. In addition to his work as a facilitator and mentor in the program, Brenden also attends Kwantlen Polytechnic University and volunteers as an assistant Senior Boys AAA Basketball coach.
Japreet S. Lehal – 18
After showing interest in working with the Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation, Japreet became the driver for the creation of the Youth for SMH club, a group of six teens who spent the summer planning a fundraising event for the hospital that raised more than $1,000 for the hospital’s pediatric oncology clinic. Japreet has been recognized with multiple scholarships totaling $48,150 and won the CBC Radio Canada Writing Contest.
Kassandra Linklater – 24
Kassandra currently attends Kwantlen Polytechnic University. She has been an active participant in programs such as Junior Team Canada, Kwantlen’s President’s Ambassadorial Team, and the G8 and G20 Summits. She is also the student representative on Kwantlen’s Board of Governors and was nominated in 2011 for the YWCA Women of Distinction Award.
William Luong – 16
Through his school, North Surrey Secondary, William is a very active volunteer. He recently received a community service medal for his work with his fellow students. William is also active with groups outside of school, including Junior Achievement of BC.
Joyce Loksum Mak – 19
While studying business at Simon Fraser University, Joyce holds the position of President of the SFU International Business Association, nonprofit organization that aims to assist all SFU students interested in pursuing a career with international prospects. Joyce is also an active member of the Guildford Rotary Club, coordinating multiple fundraisers including food bank and clothing drives.
Gurkiran (Kiran) Mann – 17
Kiran Mann is the co-founder of a youth-run group called Youth Transforming Society that raises awareness about the issues in the community and around the globe by coordinating fundraisers. She is also co-founder and president of the National Battle for Change Club at Ecole Panorama Ridge Secondary and has over 1000 volunteer hours in the community.
Ravi Muti – 25
Having just completed his MBA degree at New York Institute of Technology, Ravi is now focusing on multiple business ventures through his company, R.S. Muti Group LLP. Ravi also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology and Sociology from Simon Fraser University, and a B.C. real estate license. He is a former volunteer with Surrey’s Central City Community Patrol.
Sukhi Sangha – 23
Since 2007, Sangha’s Learning Centre has provided private and professional tutoring for students in Kindergarten through Grade 12, and also accepts students who wish to practice conversational skills in English. Sukhi has earned multiple awards and scholarships, and is an Executive Member on SFU’s Pre-Med Society and Aids Awareness Network.
Kunal Sharma – 23
Kunal is currently the Director of Business Development with City Exhibit Solutions, and is also in the process of setting up his first company that endeavors to export Canada’s natural resources to rapidly developing markets across the globe. While attending Kwantlen to achieve his Bachelor of Business Administration, Kunal used his interest in the stock market to create the Kwantlen Polytechnic Financial Group.
Tyler Spence – 23
Through his job with Ledcor Construction, currently working on the redevelopment of Guildford Town Centre, Tyler has proven himself to be a hard-working and determined individual and works closely with the Guildford Town Centre team. Tyler is also a member of the board of the Troutsmen International Club of Leisure, which organizes social events as a means of fundraising for charitable causes.
Quinn Spicker – 20
Quinn founded a web design firm called Quinn Spicker Web Design, which now in its second year has seen great success, taking on multiple new clients each week and recently completing a website for the Canadian feature film, Sisters&Brothers. Quinn also wrote a book called Let’s Build my Site: How to Create and Manage Your Own Website, which is now available for Kindle on Amazon.com.
Stevie Vu – 21
Throughout his term as President of the AIESEC Kwantlen, a student run not-for-profit organization, Stevie saw great success when he was able to establish the group as an official chapter. Stevie has been recognized by many different organizations, including the SFU Case-IT Competition where he and his team members took 1st place.
Alisa Zukanovic – 16
Alisa has a long list of extracurricular activities – she is a delegate in Model United Nations, a Red Cross Facilitator, and is part of an Anti-Bullying group called North Surrey Stands Strong. She also created a girls group to discuss social issues with young women, and organized fundraisers to help the community. Alisa also participates in a Rotary Club, Harmony in Action and Student Council.