Kendall has known Mark Sherman for years, through philanthropic causes and community events. The two also know Concordia Chancellor Jonathan Wener, BComm 71, and Sherman encouraged Wener to donate an additional $10,000 toward O3 bursaries.
“It’s our privilege to help, share the wealth, recognize community responsibility and improve opportunities,” says Sherman.
Typically, Sherman’s philanthropic goals focus on immediate problems — feeding people who are hungry and can’t feed themselves.
“Concordia was so flexible that it found a way to meet those goals by creating the O3 bursaries. We named them in honour of my Media Experts employees who embraced the organization with a big hug,” he says.
“This is really a story about an institution being an excellent partner that can tailor to donors’ needs and wishes. That’s when the magic happens.”
A single mom reshapes her life
Success, Sherman adds, is seeing a young parent get on the education ladder, with a career-track mentality. That’s why he was pleased to learn about a particular O3 resident in her third year studying political science and women's studies at Concordia.
The new Canadian — who wishes to remain anonymous — has a young daughter and is involved in student government. At Concordia, she’s active in the Women's Studies and Sexuality Studies Student Association, involved in the Anti-Racist Pedagogy Project, and works part-time at the Centre for Gender Advocacy.
“The Media Experts bursary changed how my life will unfold,” says the student, who originally came to Montreal from the outskirts of Mexico as a pregnant 19-year-old. “The culture shock was extreme, but now I can live independently with my daughter, and I’ll have a stable career. A load is lifted from my shoulders, and I’d like to thank everyone who has made this possible.”
Back at O3, Ushana Houston is busy building their community of 29 families, all striving to raise their income potential.
“It’s a pleasure seeing parents blossom, broadening their horizons and building community ties outside O3,” says Houston. “The donors who partner with Concordia have an enormous impact on many young lives.”
Media Experts is hosting its 10th annual fundraiser for O3 on Wednesday, August 25, 2021. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.