“It is a huge honour to be named Most Outstanding Graduate, especially because there are so many impressive people graduating with me,” said Kosokowsky, who celebrated the completion of her kinesiology degree by taking part in June’s University of Saskatchewan (USask) Spring Convocation ceremonies at Merlis Belsher Place. “It makes all the busy days, the lack of sleep, and hard work I put in throughout my degree all worth it.”
Each year the College of Kinesiology selects one student who stands out among their peers to earn the most outstanding graduate honour. The successful student must demonstrate leadership and participation within the college, on campus, and in their community, with academic performance also taken into consideration. Kosokowsky’s work inside and outside of the classroom made her a strong choice for this year’s award.
Kosokowsky, who is from the small community of Saint Brieux, Sask., has been involved with the college, the USask campus, and in the Saskatoon community throughout her collegiate years. She has been active with Physical Activity for Active Living (PAAL), Children’s Activity Camps, MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do it!), and the CHAMPS (Children’s Healthy Heart Camp in Saskatchewan) programs.
In spring of 2018, Kosokowsky also participated in the One Health Experience in Uganda, which is a unique opportunity that allows students at USask to explore the health sciences field, and she has also volunteered with the 5 Days for the Homeless campaign in Saskatoon.
“After my third year, I travelled to Uganda with other students through a USask and Queen Elizabeth Scholarship. We spent three months volunteering in health-care centres and it was a great way to immerse myself in African culture and learn about health-care delivery there,” said Kosokowsky.
Although these last four years have been her busiest and have flown by, her desire to get involved and give back didn’t stop on campus. Kosokowsky coached high school basketball at Tommy Douglas Collegiate and also volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House for sick children receiving medical treatment in Saskatoon.
She said some of the most influential people in her life have been previous coaches from the community, and having the opportunity to give back to other student-athletes was an easy choice.
“It’s hard to imagine where I would be without those coaches who made such a big impact on my life, which is one of the reasons why I decided to coach the Tommy Douglas Collegiate Grade 10 boys’ basketball team,” said Kosokowsky. “This was my favourite volunteering experience throughout my degree.”
Community involvement has always been an important part of each day for Kosokowsky, and her message to first-year students is simple:
“Get involved! My first week of university I was lucky enough to get involved with a volunteer opportunity and I never looked back,” she said. “The earlier you get involved, the more opportunities will be available to you and this will open so many doors. You will be busy, but it’s all worth it in the end.”
The future for Kosokowsky looks bright as she has been accepted into medicine for the fall semester and hopes to start a career as a surgeon one day, while continuing to graciously volunteer with the programs she dedicates her time to.