It looks like Squamish’s loss will soon become Victoria’s gain.
For the first time in the school’s history, a student from Howe Sound Secondary School (HSSS) has been named a Loran Scholar. Grade 12 student Emily Wiesenthal will use the scholarship money to attend the University of Victoria this fall.
Wiesenthal travelled to Toronto on Feb. 14 and 15 and she impressed Loran Scholar officials enough to earn one of the 30 scholarships worth up to $80,000 awarded each year.
“I honestly couldn’t believe it,” she told The Chief. “I didn’t think I was going to win at all. It’s pretty amazing.”
She took part in seven interviews over the two days and said she had no indication of how she fared.
“I had no idea or any feeling of how anything went until they called,” she said.
Loran Scholar officials contacted her on the night of Feb. 16. Wiesenthal said she’s looking forward to attending UVic in September. But she said it’s not only about the money. As a Loran Scholar, she plans to be heavily involved in her new community to represent the organization.
“I’m not really looking at it as just a scholarship,” she said. “They refer to it as a leadership program and they really want us to be involved in the community we’re going to and I plan on doing that.”
She said she originally had the impression that Loran Scholars usually travel outside of their province but she pointed out that she was born in Manitoba and wanted to stay in B.C. Officials agreed and the next stop for Wiesenthal will be Victoria.
“It’s pretty exciting and it’s not just the scholarship part of it,” she said. “I’ve been welcomed into the whole Loran community and there’s so many opportunity when you’re involved in something like that.”
For more information on the program, visit www.loranscholar.ca.