Congratulations Class of 2020

June 11, 2020

Congratulations to the class of 2020! This spring convocation, we acknowledge the accomplishments of our students including the recipients of our undergraduate awards and those who have distinguished themselves academically and through community engagement. 

Convocation Reception

For the first time in the Department's history, the SFU Economics Convocation reception was held online via Zoom. The virtual celebration featured keynote addresses from our alumni speaker Glenn Berg and student speaker Colin Fowler

Undergraduate Awards Recipients

Hamza Abdelrahman

SFU Convocation Speaker
Jack Knetsch Award
Cliff Lloyd Memorial Award 
Robert C. Brown Award

Hamza Abdelrahman is celebrating the completion of his honours bachelor of arts degree in economics after four years filled with high academic achievements and community engagement. Since joining SFU in 2016 as a Major Entrance Scholarship recipient, he has completed three co-op work terms and volunteered with multiple groups on campus. He has received a number of awards, including the Glenn Berg Award for academic excellence in economics; the Big Data Research Award; the NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award; and the Robert C. Brown Award for outstanding leadership and academic performance. For his honours thesis, Hamza looked at the causal effect of the disbursement of social assistance payments on drug crimes and alcohol sales in Vancouver, BC. He plans on completing graduate studies in economics and has set his career sights on becoming the prime minister of his home country, Jordan.

The Jack Knetsch Award recognizes the best essay in the Economics Honours Thesis course (ECON 499W). This award is named after emeritus professor Jack Knetsch, who joined Simon Fraser University at its inception and retired in 2000.

The Cliff Lloyd Memorial Award recognizes the graduating economics honours student with the highest CGPA.

Hamza Abdelrahman

John (Hankil) Lee

John Chant Award

Even at a young age, Lee noticed how different types of policies could impact people's standard of living and their health and happiness. He was intrigued by how economics  But his interest in the field truly started while enrolled in an economics course at Douglas College. "I was attracted by this subject that could possibly explain human behavior, and at the same time offer guidance about how the future was likely to unfold," says Lee. "I enjoy finding parallels in global history which offer insights into the nature of the problems we are facing today." 

In 2018, Lee transferred to SFU to study economics. The interdisciplinary nature of economics combining logic and mathematics appealed to Lee as well as the application of the field to banking, trading, and commerce. As Lee graduates this spring, he plans to hone his economics background while working his way through the CPA program.

The John Chant Award recognizes the student with the highest cumulative grade point average (CGPA) in the undergraduate major program. This award is named after emeritus professor John Chant, who started teaching at Simon Fraser University in 1979. 

Notable Graduates

Colin Fowler

SFU Economics Student Speaker

An outspoken advocate for students, Fowler is graduating with a BA degree majoring with distinction in economics and a minor in business administration. He is the co-founder of the Build the SFU Gondola advocacy group, and served as president of the Economics Student Society (ESS) and as a student senator championing for student issues. 

Colin Fowler

William Raphael

The SFU WUSC Student Refugee Program (SRP) opened many doors for economics honours student William Raphael—it provided him a university education and now he's heading off to the University of Toronto's Master of Financial Economics program. Raphael represented SFU as a varsity athlete on the men's soccer team, worked as a fund manager at the Vancouver Social Value Fund (VSVF), and led the SFU World University Services of Canada (WUSC) Local Committee to support incoming refugee students. 

William Lorot Raphael