Originally from Trinidad and Tobago, Arvin Ramlakhan (MEC’19) is Special Advisor within the Department  of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (ISED) Canada in Ottawa. Previously, he worked in Toronto in digital marketing and managed the advertising strategies for brands including Home Depot Canada and Ford Motor Company of Canada. He’s also an active responder on the Canadian Red Cross’ Emergency Response Team.

In addition to his Dal Master’s in Electronic Commerce, Ramlakhan has a degree in Anthropology and the Humanities from York University.

Ramlakhan was elected vice president of the Dalhousie Alumni Association (DAA) Board in 2021.

How long have you volunteered on the Dalhousie Alumni Association Board?

I have been a volunteer on the DAA Board for the past three years.

What inspired you to join the DAA Board? 

I had a fantastic experience as a graduate student at Dalhousie University. When I left Halifax, I began looking for an opportunity to contribute as an alum and to stay connected to the wider community. I wanted to use my skills and experience to help raise the profile of Dalhousie. I wanted others across the country to recognize the incredible work being done by our faculty, students, and alumni. When I saw the callout for nominations, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity for me to get involved.

Get involved: Learn how you can apply to join the Dalhousie Alumni Association Board.

What have you learned or gained from serving Dal alumni?

Over the past three years, I’ve had the opportunity to see Dalhousie continuously adapt to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a true testament to the dynamism and creativity of the Dalhousie community. I’ve also gained a better understanding of the university’s long-term strategy. I would encourage you all to have a closer look at Dalhousie’s Strategic Plan (2021-2026), Third Century Promise, to learn more about the university’s strategy for the next five years. I am confident that Dalhousie is well positioned as we move forward.

How would you summarize the role and time commitment?

As a board member you advise and support the university’s senior administrative team on issues of alumni engagement. Board members have the opportunity to join committees and participate in events.

In some instances, a board member may also be appointed to Dalhousie University’s Board of Governors, which is responsible for the overall conduct, management, administration and control of the property, revenue, business and affairs of the university.

Generally, board members will devote one to three hours per month on board business. This number may increase if you choose to participate in a committee or events. It is expected that board members will make a commitment of three years.

What is the single best experience you’ve had as a Dal volunteer?

Each year, board members have the opportunity to review submissions for the Aurum Awards. We then meet to select the finalists for the awards. It is one of my favorite activities as we get an opportunity to learn about the incredible achievements of our alumni. I am grateful that we have an opportunity to recognize our alumni who are making life-changing differences in their communities and around the world.

Learn more about the Aurum Awards, Dalhousie’s flagship alumni awards program.

What advice would you give someone considering applying to become a DAA Board member?

I would encourage you to apply to the call for nominations. We would love to hear from our alumni that are looking to reconnect and get involved. Your applications will help us gain a better understanding of your interests and how we could best utilize your skills as an alum looking to volunteer.

Apply to join the DAA Board now!