St. Clair College to Bestow Honourary Degree to Mehari Hagos (MH 100) at Winter Convocation | St. Clair College
Wednesday, December 13, 2023
Mehari Hagos holding letter

"Mehari Hagos epitomizes the type of person who merits the sort of recognition associated with an honorary degree," said St. Clair President Patti France.  "For over a decade, he has dedicated his life – personally and professionally – to mentorship, advocacy, the delivery of life-lessons,  and inspiring the youth of our community. His personality is the definition of the word 'educator', so the College is elated to present him with a degree which symbolizes that."

The College will be bestowing an Honourary Honours Bachelor of Applied Arts in Social Justice and Legal Studies Degree to Mehari Hagos at the 56th Annual Winter Convocation on February 22nd at 1pm at the St. Clair College Chrysler Theatre.

Mehari Hagos has truly been an inspirational force in our community for over a decade.

His family settled in Windsor after escaping political strife and violence in Eritrea in eastern Africa, but they did not, he reflects, find an entirely safe and peaceful haven in Canada.

His family settled in the low-income Glengarry neighbourhood of Windsor, where Mehari (as a child and teenager) eventually witnessed family members and friends descend into the dark atmospheres of drugs and crime.

On the cusp of those potential lifestyles himself, Mehari found salvation in his pursuits of sports and fitness – and through the mentorship he found at the city’s YMCA.

In his early-20s, as a coach/motivator/personal-trainer/youth-advocate, he replicated – and enhanced and expanded upon – that mentorship by founding MH100 Boot Camp, servicing (originally) his home-base in the Glengarry area.

“MH100” translates into the pre-teen and teen members of the after-school organization spending a minimum of 100 days under the tutelage of Mehari Hagos: participating in sports and fitness activities, financial literary courses, assorted “life lessons” and female empowerment exercises.

Upon completion of the 100-days-long Boot Camp, “graduates” receive a pair of shoes from Mehari: athletic shoes or dress shoes – whatever they need to pursue their primary lifegoals, whether they be athletic, academic or employment-related.

Through the revenues of his own fitness-training business, government grants and other financial support, Mehari and MH100 have, during the past decade, allocated $1.6 million in scholarship funding to hundreds of the program’s participants. Many of them, also, have won their own athletic and academic scholarships to prestigious postsecondary institutions throughout Canada and the United States.

MH100 has become a model for similar grassroots programs in cities throughout Ontario.

The MH100 Headquarters are located at 536 Pelissier Street in Downtown Windsor.

Every day the centre is full of activities after school and on weekends. The centre provides computers, gaming, life lectures and mentoring.

Participants also play sports and do physical activities throughout the city.

During the past several years, Mehari has added a concentration on postsecondary education to his advocacy efforts.

He conducts frequent tours of St. Clair College and the University of Windsor for his program’s participants and encourages them to explore not just the athletic amenities but the academic offerings of the two schools.

He is truly a community-builder who merits the gratitude of all his fellow citizens and that of this College.