Convocation 2024

Main Content


Congratulations on becoming a George Brown College graduate! We are so proud of all you've achieved.

Convocation is an opportunity to recognize and celebrate all the hard work that went into reaching this incredible milestone. There’s nothing quite like walking across the stage in front of your peers and family. We can't wait to celebrate with you!

Convocation Ceremonies are happening June 10-14, 2024 at Meridian Hall in Toronto.


Everything you need to know for the big day:


We are excited to welcome you for your ceremony at Meridian Hall, 1 Front St. E., Toronto. 

Join our community icon

Join Your New Community 

Welcome to the George Brown College Alumni Community, a place to stay connected and share your career journey.

Meet Your Valedictorians

Abby Avaria

Centre for Health Sciences

Program: Dental Hygiene

Abby's message

"All of us graduating here today have something in common. We have all arrived at this proud moment by overcoming challenges. Whether it be the challenge of reaching the top shelf in the cabinet (which I face every day), balancing studies with work or parenting, conquering a big exam, or navigating a pandemic. Starting college is daunting enough, and even more so for those of us who were saddled with the extra challenge of a pandemic. Covid has been given the spotlight for far too long in my book, but I will credit it with the teaching that no challenge is too great to overcome."


Aaron Collie

2024 valedictorian Aaron Collie

Centre for Construction & Engineering Technologies

Program: Interior Design Technology

Aaron's message

"As graduates, our education is a gift we can all now pass on. Whether as future experts in our field, or even educators ourselves, we can share what we’ve learned here to build a better world for ourselves and for generations to come. Nurture the skills you’ve learned, the connections you’ve made; continue to treat education as a gift, and step boldly into the future you have built for yourself." 


Negin Heidari

2024 valedictorian Negin Heidari

Centre for Arts, Design & Information Technology

Program: Computer Programming & Analysis 

Negin's message

"As we look towards the future, let us carry with us the lessons we've learned here – the importance of consistency, the value of collaboration, and the power of setting goals. Let us embrace new opportunities with courage, knowing that we are well-equipped to face whatever challenge lies ahead."


Elena Ktorides

Class of 2024 George Brown College

Centre for Preparatory & Liberal Studies

Program: General Arts & Science

Elena's message

"This program and this college have inspired me to bring out the best in people.  We graduates, will go out and put our fingerprints on the future.  Many of us were made to believe we could not do this, to not believe in ourselves. We did it. We believed." 


Megan McCarthy

2024 valedictorian Megan McCarthy

Centre for Community Services & Early Childhood

Program: Honours Bachelor of Interpretation (ASL - English)

Megan's message

"The basis of our character, the impact we have on others, and the values we uphold will matter well beyond our career titles. As we leave George Brown College, let’s not only chase our career dreams but also nourish these attributes we’ve strengthened during our time here. As we step into this next chapter of our lives, let’s remember that it's not just about the destination, but also about the journey. Along the way, we will encounter challenges, triumphs, and moments of self-discovery. Embrace these experiences; they will shape us into the individuals we want to become. Together, we can embark on this next adventure with courage, determination, and an unwavering commitment to making a positive difference in the world."


Santiago Escobar Nassar

2024 valedictorian Santiago Escobar Nassar

Centre for Hospitality & Culinary Arts

Program: Food & Beverage Management - Restaurant Management

Santiago's message

"The golden rule of hospitality says, 'Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you.' This is known as respect. Respect others as you would like to be respected. Sure, following this rule will allow us to go out there and be great at our jobs, and maybe be recognized for it. But if you want to go beyond, I recommend you follow the platinum rule of hospitality which says, 'Treat people the way they want to be treated.' This will not only make you sparkle and stand out from the rest; it will also help build bridges between you and the people you encounter because it shows heartfelt empathy and honest care for others. It shows that you can abstract from yourself and think about what others want and need. Do this and I can only predict happiness, wealth, and greatness for you and the ones around you in all your future endeavours. 


Ganesh Thavarajah

2024 valedictorian Sriganeshan (Ganesh) Thavarajah

Centre for Arts, Design & Information Technology

Program: Theatre Arts - Performance

Ganesh's message

"Let me quote a beloved children’s author. I promise you, it’s a good choice. Dr. Seuss said, 'When something bad happens, you have three choices: you can either let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you.' That is the beauty of choice; you always have it. In the face of adversity, happiness is a choice. In the face of danger, fear is a choice. In the face of oppression, rebellion is a choice. We have the power to create something out of nothing, will worlds into existence, and move people with our words. So, what a choice we have made to follow our dreams, and what a world we inhabit that is here to witness all the beautiful choices you will make."


Grace Aaron Tondreau

2024 valedictorian Grace Aaron Tondreau

Centre for Hospitality & Culinary Arts

Program: Baking & Pastry Arts Management

Grace's message

"I started off the first day at George Brown College with my hat on sideways for a good portion of my morning. I’m still incredibly grateful to my fellow student who pointed it out to me before I was too far into my day.  To them, I say thank you. Small acts of kindness go such a long way towards making someone feel welcome and they exemplify the kind of community we have shared here throughout our studies. I would like to give a heartfelt thanks to all of the incredible chefs here at George Brown College. Your dedication and patience have not gone unnoticed by your students."


Torry Tough

2024 valedictorian Torry Tough

Centre for Business

Program: Business Administration – Marketing

Torry's message

"Now that we’ve completed our studies, I’m sure we’re all getting the same question. ‘What are you going to do next?’ Some of us have the next steps planned out which is amazing, and some might not, which is also perfectly okay. We may not all know what is next for us, or what we plan on doing, but we can choose who we will become. Because we are all more than just students, more than partners, group members, more than just our first, 5th or 100th role or occupation. We are human beings, each with the opportunity to reflect on some of the values and lessons we have learned here and how that will impact our choices and our actions going forward."


Honorary credential recipients

  • Monday, June 10, 2:45 p.m.: Carol Phillips, Partner, Moriyama Teshima Architects, Honorary Advanced Diploma in Architectural Technology
  • Tuesday, June 11, 10:15 a.m.: Anan Lololi, Afri-Can FoodBasket (AFB)/Executive Director, Co-Founder, Honorary Honours Bachelor of Commerce (Culinary Management)
  • Tuesday, June 11, 2:45 p.m.: Alicia Elliott, Author, A Mind Spread out on the Ground, Editor, Honorary Diploma in General Arts and Science
  • Wednesday, June 12: Shawn Redmond, Vice-President, Sports, Bell Media, Honorary Graduate Certificate in Sport and Event Management.
  • Thursday, June 13, 10:15 a.m.: Armand Rabbath, COO at Myerson’s, CEO/Partner at Triocast Inc., Honorary Advanced Diploma in Jewellery Arts.
  • Thursday, June 13, 2:45 p.m.: Greg Wolfond, Chairman (Armel), CEO (Blue Sky), Honorary Graduate Certificate in Cyber Security.
  • Friday, June 14, 10:15 a.m.: Daniel (Danny) Anckle, Cecil Community Centre/ Executive Director, City of Toronto, Honorary Community Worker Diploma
  • Friday, June 14, 2:45 p.m.: José Moreno, Owner, Universal Dental Center-Mobile Dental Hygiene Clinic/Restorative Dental Hygienist, Honorary Honours Bachelor of Science (Dental Hygiene) 

Read Honorary Credential Recipients' bios

Construction and Engineering Tech graduate at Meridian Hall

Friends & Family Who Can't Make It In Person?

Your loved ones can watch online as you cross the convocation stage. All 2024 convocation ceremonies will be broadcast live on YouTube.

Elements of the convocation ceremony

Ceremonial Mace
Ceremonial Mace

George Brown College introduced the tradition of a ceremonial mace to Convocation in 2014. Designed and produced by George Brown students, faculty and alumni, this ornate staff is a symbol of authority, and reflects, through its design, the values of the college. While an initial mock-up of the mace was created using one of the college’s 3D printers, its production involved traditional casting, metalwork, woodwork and gemology.

A closer look reveals:

• Twenty-four rings on a walnut staff representing each school at the college.

• Rings of six woods from Ontario that signify our commitment to sustainability.

• Rings of seven metals from Ontario that represent a “sense of industry” and the applied nature of many of the programs offered at the college.

• A turtle at the base of the staff symbolizes our connection to Mother Earth and perseverance, intrinsic in the beliefs of many Indigenous nations.

• Four cameos beneath the mace’s chalice carved in the likeness of former Chancellor Sally Horsfall Eaton, former President Anne Sado, George Brown and Bill Davis, the founder of the modern college system.

• A crystal globe surrounded by carved wooden ladders inscribed with words that reflect the values of the college, including creativity, passion, charity, integrity and leadership.

• Two hand-carved trillium flowers on the top representing the province of Ontario.

Coat of Arms
Coat of Arms

Introduced in Spring of 2019, the George Brown College coat of arms showcases our core values and celebrates our treasured links to the past. It was designed by Bruce Patterson, Deputy Chief Herald of Canada, with input from stakeholders from across the college.

Design elements include:

  • A red-tailed hawk holding birchbark, which the original inhabitants of this land used as a means of communication and recording knowledge. Trillium flowers and maple leaves represent Ontario and Canada, respectively.
  • A grid pattern that alludes to downtown city streets and the intersection of multiple learning disciplines, rendered in the college’s colours of blue and white.
  • Multiple coloured squares represent the diversity of the student body, the city of Toronto, and the different academic centres.
  • Two huskies, the mascot of our sports teams.
  • A stone wall alluding to Casa Loma, the Toronto landmark that inspired the name of one campus.
  • A wavy bar representing water, which reflects our proximity to Lake Ontario.
  • The phrase “Inspire new confidence” is a quote from the college’s namesake, the Toronto publisher, politician, and Father of Confederation George Brown.
Eagle Feather
Eagle Feather

The Eagle, or Migizi in Anishinaabemowin, is viewed by Anishinaabe people as the messenger between the people and the Creator. As a symbol of honesty and truth, the Eagle shows courage, strength and vision. It is also the predominant totem of Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation (MCFN), upon whose traditional territory George Brown is located.

The Eagle feather is the most sacred and honoured gift given to an individual and must be obtained from an Elder or Knowledge Keeper. According to the MCFN, “The Eagle is our most sacred of birds because

the Eagle carries our prayers to the Creator and is therefore heard. The Eagle is also our relative and is part of our family. As a part of our family, we must care for and respect that it has given up its life so that a person may carry its feathers.”

Eagle feathers hold great significance for some Indigenous peoples and are commonly used in ceremonies. As the late Edward Benton-Benai tells us in The Mishomis Book: The Voice of the Ojibway, “we owe our lives and lives of our children to the Eagle” due to Migizi saving us from destruction by advocating to the Creator that there were still people that remained true to their original instruction.

Star Blanket Medallion
Star Blanket Medallion

In October 2021, George Brown College’s Indigenous Initiatives team unveiled a new medallion, featuring a star blanket design created by artist Joseph Sagaj. In Ojibwe teachings, the star blanket is seven-pointed and carries the seven original clans and the seven grandmother/grandfather teachings. It can represent legends, stories, events, and different perspectives of culture and heritage. A story is told through the star blanket by the reflecting elements of nature and the colours chosen.

The star blanket is symbolic and accompanies its own origin story in many Indigenous communities across Turtle Island. In Anishinaabe culture, the collective understanding is that we are the descendants of the stars and our inherent connection to the stars spans across generations.

Symbolic elements in the medallion include:

  • The morning star that is represented in this medallion ties in our Creation to Winona, the first woman, who was lowered from the sky.
  • Yellow represents the sun.
  • Sky blue represents the wind and water.
  • Green represents mother earth.
  • Purple represents grandmother spirit.
  • Navy blue represents the raven or health.
  • Red represents thunder.