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People of Ryerson: Mohammad Ali Serami

By Jake Kivanc

Mohammad Ali Serami is an engineering student who doesn’t want to become an engineer. Go figure.

Serami, 21, is a first-year student of Ryerson’s mechanical engineering program who immigrated to Canada from Iran in 2013 in pursuit of a freer society.

Serami said his time as a student in Iran consisted of a rigid, non-negotiable schedule that didn’t allow him to explore his true interests or passions.

“Back in Iran, it was the opposite of what is here,” Serami said. “Education was all mathematics and technology, no social sciences. The government would pay for my education on the condition that I worked for the military.”

Since arriving in Canada, Serami has gotten involved with volunteering and social work, a choice that he said has begun to change his perspective on where his career lies.

A self-described social entrepreneur, Serami said he is looking to bridge the gap between the visionaries and builders of society.

”My dream is connection,” Serami said. “We have politicians, engineers, activists and so on, but they don’t have a great understanding of each other. They end up making choices that aren’t best for everyone. I want to help fix that.”

Serami said that his reason for taking mechanical engineering despite having dreams of being an activist is to practice what he preaches.

“I want people to see that you can have a degree in one thing but be able to specialize and work in something completely different,” he said. “When you’re living in Canada, you can do anything you want as long as you have a passion for it, so I don’t think you should place yourself in a box.”

People of Ryerson will post on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

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