News: Medical Sciences student one step closer to her dream

Image of Kenisha Arora
By Communications

From helping seniors and children in foster care to dismantling the inequities in our health care system, there is a consistent message running through the work of Kenisha Arora – help and hope.

Through a not-for-profit charity called The HopeSisters and an extensive speaking platform that includes delivering a speech to the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the third-year Medical Sciences student at Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry has taken one step closer to her dream of bringing that message to the most vulnerable members of the global community.

Her work has gained her a spot as a top 10 finalist in the Global Student Prize. The annual award, created by the Varkey Foundation, is a $100,000 cash prize given to a student who has made an impact on learning, the lives of their peers, and on society. Arora was the only Canadian selected out of approximately 7,000 nominations from 150 countries.

“It is truly an honour to be recognized by Chegg for my academic achievement and community impact,” said Arora. “I couldn’t have done it without the endless support from my family, teachers and professors, mentors, and community members.”

Pandemic lessons

As COVID-19 took hold of the world early in 2020, Arora and her sister Alisha founded The HopeSisters, and provided cards of encouragement for seniors as well as care packages for children in foster care in Canada and around the world.

“If the pandemic taught us anything, it is that health and hope are the most important needs for everyone,” said Arora. “As the founder of The HopeSisters and aspiring medical physician, I strive to restore hope in the world and reduce inequities in our health care system.”

Through The HopeSisters, Arora also desires to improve the accessibility of menstrual hygiene products around the world, especially in developing nations. The charity has already donated thousands of products to children in welfare systems, and women in shelters, and continues to launch such programs for children in India and Africa.

But Arora has her sights set higher.

Her dream goal is to open a women’s health research centre in Canada, dedicated to the variety of women’s health issues that affect BIPOC women, LGBTQ+ women, women with disabilities, and other women from minority groups.

That’s where the Global Student Prize comes in.

“Should I be selected, I will work to dismantle period poverty in India and Africa, strengthen women’s health research, and champion more HopeSpreaders through our school and community HopeChapters to create opportunities for youth to give back.”

The winner for the Global Student Prize will be announced later this year.