In honour of the Champlain Saint-Lambert’s 50th anniversary, the college has followed up with 50 of its alumni to see where their paths have led after their time in Cegep. These 50 former students have gone on to accomplish amazing things and their paths show just how much is possible for a Champlain grad.
This recent grad was an outspoken advocate and winner of the Forces Avenir Persevering Student Award.
Celeste Trianon (Social Science: Commerce, 2022) is a highly engaged trans activist in Montreal. She holds positions at the Centre for Gender Advocacy, TransEstrie, and Euphorie dans le genre, and has worked with many other organisations across Quebec, ranging from Gatineau, to Quebec City, and all the way to Gaspé.
During her time at Champlain, she was an outspoken activist, leading a community campaign against Quebec Bill 2, which would have limited people’s ability to access identity documents reflecting who they are.
Celeste was an active member of the Champlain Saint-Lambert community and took part in several campus activities including the Born This Way club and the response against Quebec Bill 96.
Celeste faced many challenges during her teen years but managed to succeed personally and academically at Champlain where she graduated with a pristine academic record.
She was given the Champlain College Saint-Lambert Governing Board Award for having the second highest average in the graduating class – all while working full-time for two-thirds of her college career.
She also won the Champlain College Teachers Association Award, the Social Science Program Prize for the Commerce Option and received two Millennium Certificates of Merit for studies in Democracy and Social Movements and for Gender Studies.
In recognition of Celeste’s incredible journey, she was awarded the Forces Avenir Award in the category of Persevering Student.
The provincial award includes a bursary to help Celeste pursue her studies in law at Université de Montréal.
Looking back at her time in Cegep, Celeste said that her “experience at Champlain was one of growth.”
“Having a framework under which I could become both autonomous and get to further understand myself – both as a student and as a person – was what really made Champlain a ‘third home’ of sorts,” she said.
“I still remember all of the good times I worked with student clubs, notably Born This Way, as well as Student Services and the Champlain Student Association! The place where you learn to grow, it’s not the classroom, it’s the college itself.”
Celeste Trianon’s advice for current students and recent grads: “If you are just starting off on your educational or career journeys, I have one thing to tell you: even during your darkest hour, when all hope may seem lost, never give up. As much as it may be tempting to consider quitting altogether, remember that you have access to support and resources throughout your years in CÉGEP and beyond. There are people who are there to help and support you in various ways — whether peers, professors, or professionals. As much as so many people make it seem, both life and CÉGEP aren’t straight lines defined by specific scripts. Don’t feel pressured. Take things slowly if that will help your mental health! Just make sure to not be afraid to seek help when you need it — you’re not alone.”