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Student award offers high-flying opportunity

September 20, 2012

One day, Andre Skipper, BMOS’12, will fly. The question is, will he pilot a fighter jet for the Canadian Forces? Or head into space as an astronaut?

“Right now, I’m striving to become a fighter pilot in the air force,” says Andre, “and eventually I want to be part of the Canadian Space Program – even though it’s one of the most challenging fields in the world.”

For Andre, a recipient of an endowed Dancap Private Equity Student Award, the sky is the limit. He recently graduated from Western, specializing in commercial aviation management. Now posted with the maritime helicopter squadron in Victoria, B.C., as part of his Canadian air force pilot training, Andre credits his Western experience as fundamental to fulfilling his dream.

“Receiving the Dancap Award attested to the fact that hard work and dedication pay off – and it paved the way for the success I had in my final years at Western,” says Andre, who used part of the
funds to pay for fencing equipment so he could participate on the varsity team. “The sheer volume of opportunities at Western increased my life experiences and prepared me for anything I might face in the future.”

Andre was one of 18 students from the DAN Management and Organizational Studies (MOS) program who received Dancap Private Equity Student Awards in 2012. Named in recognition of a $5-million gift from Western graduate Aubrey Dan, BACS’85, the DAN program is the only one of its kind in Canada, combining a strong business foundation with a broad social science education. The program includes specializations in accounting, consumer behaviour, finance, human resources and commercial aviation management.

“I think that having people like Aubrey Dan supporting Western is an immense asset to the University. He really believes in the program – and its students,” says Andre. “The Dancap Awards further cement why Western has the best student experience in the country.”

To read more about the DAN program, go to

This article appeared in the 2012 edition of Endowment Report
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