Parsa Shani is a senior student at the University of British Columbia (UBC), pursuing a bachelor of applied science in civil engineering and a minor in arts in urban studies. He will be joining the cohort of Corbett scholars in the 2019 winter and spring quarters at the University of Washington.
Parsa is passionate about sustainable infrastructure development and social innovation, and has been involved with numerous organizations, including the Engineering Undergraduate Society of UBC as conferences director and the UBC Global Lounge through various interfaith and intercultural dialogue initiatives. He has also represented UBC at a myriad of nationwide conferences, including the Canadian Federation of Engineering Students’ Conference on Diversity in Engineering hosted by the University of Waterloo and Engineers without Borders’ national conference held in Edmonton, Alberta. At the Engineers without Borders conference, he collaborated with student leaders from across Canada on the evolving nature of the engineering profession and the necessity of interdisciplinary integration for achieving the 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Most recently, he attended a UBC Global Seminar in Chongqing, China, during which he focused his studies on China’s post-reform urban and environmental policies, as well as China’s trajectory in the context of global governance.
Raised in Vancouver, Parsa looks forward to living south of the Canadian border and attending UW as a Corbett scholar, as it will allow him to engage in opportunities and advocacy projects that aim to bolster support and investment for the development of the Cascadia Innovation Corridor between Vancouver and Seattle, as part of the larger British Columbia-led Digital Technology Supercluster vision put forth by the federal government of Canada. He is also excited to tangibly observe life in Seattle and in the United States from urban planning, political, and sociological perspectives. He expects to cultivate his collective understanding of the urban lifestyle and enable him to compare Seattle with other cities where he has spent extensive time, including cities in Eastern and Western Canada, East Asia, and the Middle East.