Toni Agbaje-Ojo ’21 wins Loran Scholarship

The esteemed scholars' program is Canada's largest four-year undergraduate award for young leaders of tomorrow.
Agbaje-Ojo's nomination by UCC was the beginning of his journey. The extensive application process included writing five essays and participating in two interviews. This year, the Loran Scholars Foundation received more than 6,000 applications and awarded 30 scholarships, making the odds of being selected five in 1,000 and the success even sweeter.

"It’s mostly about leadership and soft skills, as well as character and service," Agbaje-Ojo says. "They wanted to know what you do and why, and how that shaped you."

Agbaje-Ojo does quite a bit. 

"My mom and I have a joke that I'll burn myself out, I'm moving so much," he says. "I've done things that came naturally to me and that I’m passionate about."

His faith is important to him, and Agbaje-Ojo is involved in volunteering at his church, whether with book drives or handling the sound systems for events, performances or announcements.

Sports are also part of his life. He runs track and field at UCC and plays football "just for fun."

Most important, however, are the activities that relate to his future career plan to become a pediatrician. 

"Ever since I was four, I wanted to do something with math and science," Agbaje-Ojo says. "I’ve always worked with kids; I like biology; and I also like talking to people and forming connections. It energizes me."

The son of a teacher, Agbaje-Ojo has been a tutor since Year 7, so it only made sense to join Horizons, UCC's inter-school program that pairs students in the Upper School with TDSB elementary students for tutoring and mentorship. Agbaje-Oje is the program's current president.

Last year, he ran an online mental health conference at the College.

"UCC is very competitive, so I wanted to offer my peers ways to support themselves and others," he says. "I know boys internalize pressures. We need to know coping strategies. I hope the conference encouraged others to take mental health more seriously."

As he looks ahead, Agbaje-Ojo is trying to decide which university to accept, but he says he knows he'll have a good experience whichever one he chooses. Meanwhile, he's anticipating the benefits that come along with his well-earned scholarship, which include three summer internships; course and career guidance; a professional mentor; and a lifelong network of scholars. 

"There's an outdoors trip in August for all of this year's scholars and all of last year's," he says, "and I’ve inquired about a pediatrics internship for the summer. We’ve been told to use the network of past scholars who are located all across the world, and who want us to succeed."
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