DHARAMSALA, 10 Aug: Chemi Lhamo was awarded the inaugural Tibetan youth icon to a packed house at Upper TCV School’s Herman Gmeiner Auditorium.
Chemi Lhamo, a Tibetan-Canadian who is the President of the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus Student Union (SCSU) in Canada, was awarded the Tibetan youth icon award and cash prize of RS 1,00,000 by the Education Minister of Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), Dr Pema Yangchen.
The young Tibetan activist who has flown in from Canada to receive the award highlighted the importance of unity among Tibetans in her acceptance speech.
The president of the Student Union described herself as a relatively new face in our community and that there is more work to be done than what she had done so far.
Speaking to the press after the event, she thanked His Holiness the Dalai Lama, her parents, teachers for their guidance and blessing, and the Global Tibetan Student Union(GTSU), the organiser of the event for the platform.
Lhamo told reporters that she felt great to be recognized for her work and that she is ever more motivated after the recognition by the Tibetan community.
The young Tibetan activist is currently double majoring in Neuroscience and Psychology and minoring in Biology at the University of Toronto Scarborough.
She was the former SCSU’s Vice-President Equity before her election as the president of SCSU.
Her election in Feb earlier this year drew a barrage of abuse, threats and racist slurs from Chinese students that Canadian Security Intelligence Service said likely originated from Chinese diplomats in Canada.
The organiser of the award, the Global Tibetan Student Union, initially known as “Let’s Open the Door to College” was founded in 2016 on the 81st birthday of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
It is an apolitical organisation that runs on its core principle of unity, education and motivation amongst Tibetan youth in particular and the world at large. The event has been generously sponsored by Norgyal handicrafts, Mandala telecom and Menlha.
The other finalists of the inaugural Tibetan youth icon include Tibetan parliamentarian and President of Gu Chu Sum Movement of Tibet Namgyal Dolkar Lhagyari, TYC President Gonpo Dhondup, President of Yangchen’s medical team -Tenzin Yangchen and Kalsang Tashi — former president of SFT Bangalore.
Chemi Lhamo was declared the winner after the contestants underwent an online public poll through and a poll by a five-member jury appointed by the GTSU that carried 30 and 70 marks respectively.