The University of Guelph will celebrate the Class of 2023 during summer convocation ceremonies that kick off June 13. 

This year, a record number of graduands are registered to attend. The University will award more than 3,900 degrees, diplomas and certificates to graduands from seven colleges during 13 ceremonies June 13-16 in the event centre of the Guelph Gryphons Athletics Centre

Honorary degrees will also be conferred on seven accomplished recipients next week.

Friends, family members and grads can watch live as graduands cross the stage. Scheduled times for all ceremonies are on the U of G Convocation page.  

Students can extend the celebration at home by downloading #GuelphGrad-themed social media filters, profile picture frames and cover photos or by printing the #GuelphGrad lawn sign. 

Before graduands receive their degree parchments, several students will receive awards to recognize outstanding academic and civic achievements. 

W.C. Winegard Medal 

Claire Wright

Named for former U of G president Bill Winegard, the W.C. Winegard Medal is U of G’s top undergraduate convocation award and recognizes both academic achievement and contributions to campus and community life.  

While completing a degree in studio art, Wright worked across many creative disciplines and embodied the conviction that the arts foster social awareness and engagement. She used visual art and music to spark discussion of mental health, social justice and community care through a collaborative music project and helped develop a music education program while receiving accolades for her visual artwork, among many other achievements.   

D.F. Forster Medals 

The D. F. Forster Medals are U of G’s top convocation award for graduate students. Named for former U of G president Donald Forster, the medal recognizes academic achievement, leadership and citizenship. 

  • D.F. Forster Medal (magisteriate):
    Delane Linkiewich 

An active advocate in the pain community, Linkiewich has co-authored seven peer-reviewed publications on studies with hard-to-reach populations, specifically children and adolescents with chronic pain. She has contributed to campus life as a campus representative for the Canadian Psychological Association and organized an annual national conference for people with chronic pain. 

  • D.F. Forster Medal (doctoral):
    Jolene Giacinti

Giacinti’s studies of canine distemper virus during her PhD in the Department of Pathobiology have advanced understanding of the disease. She has co-authored 16 papers in prestigious peer-reviewed journals, including serving as first author on six. Among numerous leadership activities, she has served as a mentor to undergraduate and graduate students, volunteered with Let’s Talk Science and served as a board director with Veterinarians Without Borders, helping to shape the organization’s One Health mandate. 

Walter Vaughan Medal 

Pavanjot Kaur

Named for a former secretary of Senate, the medal recognizes a student who has achieved high academic standing and made a substantial contribution to student life through involvement in Senate activities. 

Kaur lent a strong voice to U of G student concerns as a dedicated and valued student senator with various student senate caucus working groups, speaking up about important issues and demonstrating a commitment to the improvement of campus life. 

Governor General’s Medals 

Two Governor General’s Gold Medals are awarded each year for outstanding academic excellence:

Gold Medals – top graduate students 

  • Alexandra Coates, a doctoral student in exercise physiology in the Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences in the College of Biological Science 
  • Jennifer MacNicol, a doctoral student in equine physiology in the Department of Animal Biosciences in the Ontario Agricultural College 

Silver Medals – top undergraduate students  

  • Helen Chen, biomedical science 
  • Amelia Hanna Doerksen, biomedical science 

Bronze Medal – top diploma student 

  •  Stefanie Helena Postl, veterinary technology diploma at U of G Ridgetown Campus