Since enrolling in Yorkville University’s Bachelor of Business Administration program Jay Lodaya has transformed from the shy kid in class, to the Class of 2023’s valedictorian.
“Before coming to Yorkville, I was a person who would shy away from raising my hand in class, but this fresh start gave me the confidence to do so,” said Lodaya, who recently graduated from the BBA program with a specialization in Project Management and is now working as a Project Coordinator for Yorkville.
“I was able to build a new identity for myself here, and Yorkville University often encouraged me along the way.”
Heavily involved in student life during his studies at Yorkville’s Ontario campus, Lodaya took on many different roles at the university – from Library Assistant, to Peer Tutor, to Student Life activities helper, to the first-ever President of the YU Project Management Guild.
“Never did I imagine all these possibilities for myself,” he said, noting his belief that hard work and motivation are the keys to his success.
Lodaya recently sat down to reflect on his time at Yorkville University and his plans for the future. Here’s what he had to say:
What brought you to Yorkville University? Where were you in your life/career when you decided to continue your studies with us?
Something that attracted me to Yorkville University was the ability to accelerate my courses. I came to Yorkville University in 2019 as a 19-year-old, new to the country and always eager to learn more and explore. Being dynamic and quick to grasp, I figured course acceleration would be key to me making the most out of my education in a short span of time and additionally saving time, as well. I know I have a long way ahead in my life and have planned my steps accordingly. Program acceleration helped me tremendously and the smaller classroom sizes were amazing! I am still in personal contact with most of my professors –the smaller class sizes helped!
What made you decide to pursue your Bachelor of Business Administration?
Coming from a family with a business background, I knew a career in business was my first choice. But honestly, I don’t feel comfortable continuing my family business or starting my own yet. My passion right now lies in helping other businesses grow and in further enhancing my knowledge, so that one day I can start my own business. Yorkville’s BBA degree with a Project Management specialization is brilliant. I am now at a point in my life where I do not necessarily love the idea of doing the same job for a long span of time. Working on a project-by-project basis, you get to work on one thing over a span of time and then change to something new. Project Management suits my ideology of not having the same monotonous work environment, but something unique, creative, and dynamic!
What is the most important thing you’re taking away from your studies at Yorkville University?
The most important lesson I’m taking away from YU is that networking, connections, and relationships with people are important, and also that honesty goes a long way. Coming into a new country, you have the chance to refresh your life. Before coming to Yorkville, I was a person who would shy away from raising my hand in class, but this fresh start gave me the confidence to do so. I was able to build a new identity for myself and Yorkville University often encouraged me along the way. I held several different roles at the university, from Library Assistant, to Peer Tutor, to Student Life activities helper, to the first-ever YUPM Guild President and now as Valedictorian. Never did I imagine all these possibilities for myself.
What are your plans after graduation, both immediate and long term?
I plan to keep learning, keep growing and keep achieving – a plan I will follow for the rest of my life. Currently, I’m working as a Project Coordinator at YU! I know that if I am to be a successful Project Manager, I need to learn tid-bits from each and every field possible – be it Information Technology, Education, or Business Development. As graduates, the world is out there for us to explore and conquer, provided we work hard for it.
In the next three years, I plan to complete several certifications with PMP (Project Management Professional) being on the top of the list. I also want to start studying for my master’s degree and never stop learning. One day maybe I’ll give back to the community, as well – be it in the form of teaching or coaching. I love the idea of watching people and helping people grow and develop.
If you offered one piece of advice to an incoming student, what would that be?
Patience goes a long way. A lot of times students in general are excited and want to achieve the most in the least amount of time. But we all need to have patience and perseverance. The power of manifestation works, but not just on its own. You need to work hard for all those achievements you want to achieve.
I would like to end with a quote from my favourite soccer player, Cristiano Ronaldo, “Dreams are not what you see in your sleep, dreams are things which do not let you sleep.”