“Listen to the stories of the women and gender-diverse people in our communities and take the time to unpack your unconscious biases.”

-Sara Kardash

Age: 22

Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta

Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta

Affiliations: Engineers Without Borders Canada (ACGC Member)

Tell us about yourself!

I am in my final year of civil environmental engineering at the University of Alberta, where I have been involved with the on-campus Engineers Without Borders (EWB) Canada chapter as co-president. I went into engineering with a desire to help others and have created a space where I am able to learn and grow as an engineer and as a systems-change leader.

How does your work promote gender equality in Canada and around the world?

I lead a team of young individuals who want to see change in our community, change in the world, and change in their own lives. These young people fuel my desire to continue learning and uncovering the ways that I, as a white woman, have benefitted from inequality and the oppression of others. I have an opportunity to be an example as a woman in engineering who is not afraid to ask tough questions and stand out as someone who cares. I am proud to represent an organization that continually invests in women—both overseas and within Canada—and sees the value in having gender representation at our table.

How does the work you do addressing gender inequality connect to progress on the other Sustainable Development Goals?

The University of Alberta EWB Chapter has been actively working for the past year on our national advocacy campaign, #Hello2030. It has been exciting to see our chapter members engaging with the public around the SDGs and Canada’s role on the global stage. We have been collecting support for the SDGs and plan on taking this to the federal government as proof that Canadians believe there is more that can be done to implement and achieve the SDGs by 2030.
As an organization, our work investing in early-stage social enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa supports several of the SDGs. Working with grassroots organizations, we are able to see change in the economic, environmental, and social systems that have enabled poverty and inequality for so long. Additionally, our chapter has had conversations with large Canadian companies who are interested in incorporating the SDGs into their businesses.

More 2019 Top 30 Alumni

Karl Narvacan

"Be inclusive and accepting of other people’s ideas and habits, and you can be a changemaker for gender equality." -Karl Narvacan Age: 29 Hometown: Manila, Philippines Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Spinal Cord Injury Treatment Centre Society, Choosing Wisely Canada As first-generation immigrants from the Philippines, our family faced a common challenge—navigating the health care system. I vividly remember going to the ER one day when I had a severe toothache, only to...

Tina Guo

"As young individuals, we have a unique opportunity and responsibility to advocate for marginalized populations, and strive to effect positive change in our communities." -Tina Guo Age: 22 Hometown: Calgary, Alberta Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: Students Against Domestic Abuse Association, Outrun the Stigma Calgary, Student Run Clinic Born to a poor, first-generation immigrant family, I understood at a tender age the irreplaceability of diligence and tenacity. However,...

Alex Wong

"As an advocate, it is important to recognize your own privilege and help elevate the voices of others, rather than replace them with your own." -Alex Wong Age: 22 Hometown: Calgary, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: MD Admissions Initiative for Diversity and Equity, Medical Students’ Association - University of Alberta, Canadian Federation of Medical Students, Net Impact My passion for medicine stems from my belief that good health is one of the cornerstones of...

Elizabeth Roden

"You don’t have to do something on a grand scale; just live your values and stand up for what you believe in." -Elizabeth Roden Age: 29 Hometown: Glendon, Alberta Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: Operation Eyesight (ACGC Member) From an early age, I’ve always believed that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. I helped form a leadership group at my high school and was eager to learn more about world issues. In 2007, I moved to Calgary to pursue a degree...

Janine Heber

"Continually question and re-evaluate how spaces can be made more accessible, and take action to reduce barriers for marginalized folks." -Janine Heber Age: 19 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Queer Flex, Sexual Violence Awareness/Office of Human Rights, Plan International Canada Speakers’ Bureau, Rainbow Alliance Youth for Edmonton, The Quiltbag, MacEwan Office of Sustainability I am a queer, non-binary artist, activist, and student. I have a...

Stephanie Southgate

"Never underestimate the effect that your actions have on other people. Follow your interests and skills, and use them to make a positive impact." -Stephanie Southgate Age: 28 Hometown: Ipswich, United Kingdom Currently Residing In: Calgary, Alberta Affiliations: CAWST (ACGC Member) I have always been driven to make a positive contribution to others and the world. However, during a university internship in rural India, my resolve to shift my career path towards education was solidified upon...

Sonia Lal

"Reflect on the stereotypes and prejudiced views you may apply to others. Recognize if you’re discriminatory, and rectify your behaviour. Change starts with you." -Sonia Lal Age: 18 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: John Humphrey Center for Peace and Human Rights (ACGC Member) Students Invested in Health Association, Live Different, Big Brothers Big Sisters From a cheerleader with a bow in her hair to a Taekwondo competitor gearing up to spar on...

Koshin Mohomoud

"The most important thing for anyone wanting to make a change is to get involved. Whether you are able to volunteer a little bit of your time or a lot, it is always important." -Koshin Mohomoud Age: 29 Hometown: Surrey, British Columbia Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Edmonton Somali Professionals I am currently a senior policy advisor with the Government of Alberta. Prior to my current role, I worked in both the public and private sectors and spent time working in my...

Nicole Jones-Abad

"It’s important to honour people’s pronouns, have physically accessible all-gender washrooms at events, and talk about gender in less binary terms. It’s also important to check in on your trans and non-binary friends, and make room for them."     -Nicole Jones-Abad Age: 23 Hometown: Quito, Ecuador Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: Shades of Colour, RAYE (Rainbow Alliance for Youth of Edmonton), QWTF (Queer Women and Trans-folk Fest), The Edmonton Shift Lab While I’ve lived...

Hamila Al-Turk

"Gender equality is not just a women’s issue, but a human rights issue, and we all need to be part of the conversation." Age: 21 Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta Currently Residing In: Edmonton, Alberta Affiliations: City of Edmonton Youth Council, Social Equity Subcommittee, Diabetes Canada Club One of the wisest teachers to have taught me once said, “Compassion is the basis of all morality, so live your life as if you were a mirror that reflects the good back to people.” Being a student under her...
Share This