Three years ago, the School of Information introduced the first new student award in 40 years, and the first award ever named for a student. It was inspired by an exceptional student, Nikki Candelore Roda.
The Nikki Candelore Roda Student Impact Award celebrates a student who has shown initiative and dedication to service, has influenced the culture and climate of the school in positive ways, has been a student leader and good ambassador, and has left a lasting legacy.
Sonia Doshi was recognized this year for her desire to give fellow bachelor’s students a voice at UMSI that led to the formation of the School of Information Bachelors Association, where she served as founding president. She also served as president of Kappa Theta Pi, the world’s first and only professional technology fraternity. As a volunteer at Ann Arbor Community High School, Sonia developed a course that would allow students to learn more about career opportunities, as well as engage in a short-term internship.
She has received national recognition for her advocacy on mental health issues and founded the Healthy Minds Student Leadership coalition, which she also served as president. This coalition brought together student organizations and leaders to provide education regarding mental health. She also started the national Tiny Minds film competition, which has inspired dozens of college students to create brief videos about mental health.
While at UMSI, Doshi’s service and leadership spanned academic, professional, and community activities across the university. She is truly leaving UMSI and the university a better place than when she arrived. Her leadership, her deep care of others, and her commitment to inclusion and community made her the ideal recipient of the Nikki Candelore Roda award.
You can read more about Doshi and discover more about her advocacy of mental health resources in the video below.