Marissa BumanlagCo-president Marissa Bumanlag accepts the Human Rights and Social Justice Award on behalf of the UWindsor chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Friday during the OHREA open house.

Awards celebrate work to create inclusive environment

There is more to Engineers Without Borders than engineering. The UWindsor chapter of the humanitarian group was honoured by the Office of Human Rights, Equity and Accessibility last week for its work to educate and empower people around the world to end poverty.

Co-president Marissa Bumanlag, who accepted the Human Rights and Social Justice Award on the group’s behalf at a ceremony Friday, is a case in point. A third-year political science major with a minor in philosophy, she is committed to broadening its membership.

“We’re not limited to engineering students,” she said. “Broadening the awareness of our cause is very dear to my heart.”

Other honorees Friday included social work professor emeritus Donald Leslie, Accessibility Award; former university librarian Gwendolyn Ebbett, Employment Equity Award; and drama professor Erica Stevens Abbitt, OHREA Award.

OHREA director Kaye Johnson calls the awards celebration an uplifting experience.

“It’s a real pleasure for us to recognize the work everyone is doing across campus,” she says. “Everyone goes away feeling good after celebrating the contributions of so many people in so many areas.”