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Alumni turned involvement in Providence community into job with Folk Fest

Feb 6, 2018 | Alumni Stories, News

“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” – Psalm 133:1

At Providence, not only do we value alumni who have become difference-makers in the world, but we also treasure those who have left a mark on campus by investing in our community. Many students have found the community at Providence to be one of its best qualities, and it is because of alumni like Shevaun Fortune (‘15) that we are proud of what it offers.

In the fall of 2011, Shevaun entered Providence University College with a unique level of determination and charisma. Envisioning a fresh way students could interact, learn and grow together, she decided to take on the initiative of enhancing student life. Without knowing it at the time, her efforts on campus would later propel her into the career she enjoys today.

Shevaun became involved in all things community-oriented. “I had so many opportunities to lead and teach,” she says. “I was busy all the time and loved it all!”

In her first year, she noticed a need for a place where students could gather and visit. “I had friends in dorm who didn’t have cars or were international students who didn’t feel they had a place to go,” she recalls. “In my second semester, I was taking “Intro to Business” and we had to make a business plan. So, I got a few friends and Bruce Duggan, my Business professor, to help me create a coffee shop.”

With support from friends and faculty, Shevaun was able to give the idea a trial run in the spring and summer of 2011. By the fall of 2012, the campus coffee shop was fully running in the sports lounge and had become a great place for people to gather.

During her years studying for a Bachelor of Arts (Adv.) in Business Administration and Theatre, Shevaun continued to manage the campus coffee shop, develop and run the database for the campus textbook store, stand in as the student representative on the Buller Centre for Business board, work as a theatre assistant, and direct Prov Players, the touring theatre ensemble. These tremendous accomplishments left a positive impact on the Providence campus and helped Shevaun discover her abilities.

In the summer after her third year, she applied for an administrative role in the box office of the Winnipeg Folk Festival, a summer music festival held at Birds Hill Provincial Park. There were over 200 applicants and she believes she got the position because she mentioned the campus coffee shop and textbook store initiatives in her application. After graduation, Shevaun began working full-time for the Folk Festival and later took on the title of Office Coordinator.

Reflecting on her experiences of the past few years, Shevaun encourages others at Providence to “look for opportunities, and don’t be afraid to share your ideas because there are people all around who will support you as you grow.