Leanne Barcellona

Leanne Barcellona

What education have you taken?

After graduating high school, I began studying at Brandon University. Following a couple of years of study, I began a 2-year Diploma program at Assiniboine Community College in Office Administration. At the completion of my first year, my instructor recommended me for an interview at the Brandon Regional Health Authority for Westman Lab. I was offered the position and subsequently graduated with the Office Administration Certificate from ACC. I later returned to BU to complete my Bachelor of Arts in History, and I am thrilled to be graduating this May.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

Here at BU I was awarded the G. F. MacDowell Scholarship in European History. This was significant for me because history is my passion, and European history is really my area of interest. I was also awarded the Brandon Lions Club Award upon graduation at ACC. It has been an accomplishment to manage the work of completing my degree to the best of my ability while balancing my employment and family responsibilities. It is gratifying to be finishing this degree at last, and I hope that I am a model to my children of the importance of education.

My submission was chosen from many entries to name Harvest Hall at BU. I love Brandon University and to be involved in an enduring way like this is quite special.

I am both surprised and honored to be nominated for this profile, as there are many incredible women doing amazing things here at BU.

I am most proud to have raised intelligent, kind and thoughtful children.

Tell me about yourself.

I am a Brandonite, born and raised. I started at Brandon University directly out of high school, but after a couple of years, I was unsure of what I really wanted; I was not following my true path. I left school for six months and then attended ACC, began working, married, had children and left the workforce to raise them. I had thought over the years about finishing my degree, but there was not a time that worked out. Once my kids were in school, I began working here at BU and decided it was time to finish my degree. It has definitely been more of a struggle the second time around, since I am now working full time and have two school-aged children to get to activities and help with their own homework. I am lucky to have the support of my husband.

How did you become interested in your field of study?

I have always had an affinity for all things historical. I first remember as a child enjoying period movies that my mom would watch. As I got older, Antiques Roadshow became a favorite TV show and I remember being most engaged by history class and the historical aspects of English class in grade 7 and 8. I loved researching the past. I was always drawn to historical books and films, both fiction and nonfiction, so I decided I should study a subject that I felt such passion for. Taking classes and meeting some amazing people working in the field here at BU has really confirmed I am on the right path.

What is your philosophy in life?

Remain true to yourself. If you follow your passion it will lead you in the right direction, even if you do not see where that path may take you.

Where do you see yourself in the future?

Still here at Brandon University! I love the academic environment and working with students is energizing and truly fulfilling.  After a break from studies, I will enter a Masters program in the near future.

Nominator’s Comments

I would like to nominate Leanne Barcelona as an exceptional student.  I’ve now had the pleasure of working with Leanne in two senior classes, and her work is excellent. She consistently produces fine research and writing, is a tremendous asset to classroom discussions – she puts considerable care into reading and thinking through the required texts, and is a thoughtful and patient collaborator with other students.