Main Content

Celebrating Rotman’s community of volunteers during National Volunteer Week

April 2024

As communities across the country celebrate National Volunteer Week this week, April 14–20, Rotman applauds its community of ambassadors and volunteers who tirelessly support the School’s continued ascent as one of Canada’s premier business schools.

Last year, over 1,000 alumni have volunteered their time and talent to contribute to the overall success of Rotman’s events, programming and students.

To continue the tradition of cultivating leaders who believe in the common good of giving back, Rotman’s expansive community is invited to support the School’s various initiatives and opportunities all year round.

Sandra Jarvis

Those looking to volunteer with Rotman students directly can engage in official or unofficial mentorship and coaching opportunities. Take long-time supporter Sandra Jarvis (MBA '92), for example. From auditing courses and participating in mock interviews to providing individual coaching and sharing insights as a Mentor of Rotman’s LEADS Program since 2020, Jarvis has directly invested in the triumph of our students and graduates as they prepare to venture into the next stage of their career journey. Driving these devoted efforts is her grounded belief that by helping students be successful and happy in their careers, Canada’s business landscape will, in turn, become more successful and competitive.

“Rotman’s programs are incredibly robust and attract fantastic and capable students,” said Jarvis. “But it is our role as mentors to help them feel at ease with the many decisions they will make regarding their career and encourage them to maintain optimism when faced with the challenges of a new and competitive market.”

Reflecting on her various volunteer roles with the School, Jarvis has found the community to be inclusive and supportive, allowing professionals to thrive as students and later in their careers as mentors.

A more productive country hinges on our ability to unlock the doors to opportunity for everyone.

Narinder Dhami, MBA '08

Fernando LeonA similar sentiment is shared by fellow volunteer Fernando León (MFRM '19), who sees the benefits of his involvement, both for students contemplating their career after Rotman and himself, as a professional with a strong desire to leverage the School’s expansive network.

Since graduation, León has repeatedly volunteered at Rotman’s annual homecoming celebration, Reunite, as well as countless panel discussions and one-on-one coffee chats with current students. “Growing up, I learned the saying ‘favor con favor se paga,’ which translates to ‘favours are paid in favours.’ This mantra is one I’ve carried with me as I’ve navigated my career and has motivated me to stay connected to Rotman and its network that solely exists and thrives because of our innate impulse to help each other in times of need,” shared León.

Much of his involvement also stems from his conscious efforts to stay in touch with the School, including its staff and faculty, who he quotes as pivotal in his development. While often stepping up as an advisor for current students, León recognizes that staying engaged with Rotman’s network also allows him to hone his own skills, such as leadership and continue to meet fellow leaders that inspire his work and ambitions as an industry professional.

As another way of giving back, many members of Rotman’s community engage and volunteer with fundraising initiatives such as Rotman Giving Day, the School’s annual fundraising campaign. Whether acting as ambassadors for the campaign’s outreach, leading a class gift or making a meaningful contribution to support a featured fund, campaign volunteers directly support Rotman students by enhancing scholarship support, research initiatives and extracurricular activities.

Narinder DhamiFor Narinder Dhami (MBA '08), her work in impact investing and philanthropy which focuses on increasing access to opportunity, paired with the sudden death of a close friend and fellow classmate inspired her to support Rotman by helping spearhead a scholarship in his honour – now known as the Ike Justin Kaja Memorial Scholarship. Acting as a fitting tribute to Kaja's profound impact on the Rotman community and general love for the School, the joint efforts of his classmates also served as a testimony to the strong and meaningful relationships established during their time as students.

The group also leveraged the matching funds offered as part of Rotman Giving Day to amplify the impact their contributions would have on future recipients and ensure Kaja’s legacy in perpetuity; a welcomed effort by Dhami, who believes “a more productive country hinges on our ability to unlock the doors to opportunity for everyone.”

When contemplating her desire to give back, Dhami sees it as a simple opportunity to align her actions and work to support underserved areas of society. Leading by example, she leverages business as a powerful tool for social change and hopes to create an impact in the world by merging meaning and money and blending profits and purpose.

With so many different events and opportunities to stay involved with Rotman, the School thanks its dedicated volunteers and their efforts throughout the year. Those looking to learn more about how they can give back through volunteering can contact a team member at

Written by Cialyn Carson