Fitsum Areguy wins 2020 Mandelbaum Fellowship for Masters level of study

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TORONTO – The Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) is pleased to announce that this year’s recipient of the Henry Mandelbaum Fellowship for the Masters level of study is Fitsum Areguy from the University of Guelph.

“The Mandelbaum Fellowship recognizes graduate students who combine exceptional scholarship with deep engagement in their communities,” said Susan Wurtele, Vice-President of OCUFA. “Each year, we receive many excellent applications, and this year was no exception. With this award, we are pleased to recognize Fitsum Areguy’s commitment to advancing the lives of equity-seeking groups in the greater Guelph and Waterloo region and impressive academic scholarship.”

As a Masters student at the University of Guelph, Fitsum is exploring the nature of informal caregiving, with a particular focus on the experiences of young carers and ways to support and improve the experiences of this often invisible population.

His volunteer commitments intersect with his research and illustrate his deep commitment to equity. Fitsum volunteers as a Project Facilitator and Chair of the Young Carers Project, a research-based initiative focused on raising awareness about the existence of young carers, and he leads community consultations with the local African, Caribbean and Black community to identify key targets for anti-Black racism work in the region. Fitsum is also the founder of Textile, a community-engaged art organization that offers literary mentorship, art programming, and publication opportunities through an annual literary journal.

The Mandelbaum Fellowship was established to honour Henry Mandelbaum, Executive Director of OCUFA from 1996-2011. The Fellowship is awarded to graduate students who have demonstrated academic excellence, show exceptional academic promise, and have provided significant service to their community during their university years.

“Henry was passionate about social justice, and improving the lives of those who faced formidable social and economic barriers,” said Wurtele. “Sadly, Henry passed away in 2012, but we are honoured to continue his work through the Mandelbaum Fellowship.”

Founded in 1964, OCUFA represents 17,000 faculty and academic librarians in 30 faculty associations across Ontario. For more information, please visit the OCUFA website at


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