#FacesOfTrentU: Philanthropy in Action

Rayna Porter, President, Trent Durham Student Association (TDSA)

rayna porter for trentu changemakersRayna Porter, President of the Trent Durham Student Association (TDSA) and Communications & Critical Thinking student at Trent Durham, is passionate about strengthening the Trent community.


Last year, she was involved in a course that had students critically assessing the food systems of their local community. During their project, Rayna and her classmates conducted interviews, compiled a report and developed numerous solutions to help these vulnerable systems prepare in the event of an environmental crisis.


This year Rayna helped to give many students the opportunity to virtually celebrate the talent of their peers through the #TrentInProgress initiative at Trent’s Durham Campus during the month of April. Students came together to support one another through engaging in fun and creativity while social distancing.  


“We are so proud of the initiatives our association is working on and the effort our students have shown to help them flourish,” Rayna says, reflecting on the initiative. 


In light of the many changes that individuals are going through during the pandemic, Rayna discusses the importance of each and every person working to dismantle barriers to education, it would become truly accessible to all. The current realities have only reinforced the importance that Rayna sees in the field of education. 


“I want to continue to bring meaningful change to our society,” says Rayna. “Every student should have the opportunities that I’ve had, but with less of the barriers than I’ve faced."


Rayna credits Trent as being a place where students are given the tools to challenge the status quo. Trent, Rayna says, focuses on making the world a better place for more people, while meeting students where they are.  

During these unprecedented times, Rayna believes it is more important than ever before to have educated and engaged citizens who can think critically and make the best decisions for themselves and the people around them. She encourages students and the community to be conscious and empathetic when it comes to the lived experiences of others. 

To learn more about investing in the next generation of critical thinkers please visit trentu.ca/changemakers