An Abbotsford teen is the recipient of the Coast Capital Standing Tall Education Award.
Rachelle Clark, 18, a graduate of Robert Bateman Secondary, is among 61 young people across the province to receive the $3,500 grant to help pay for post-secondary education costs.
The award is given to students who have persevered to find educational success.
“This award offers me the opportunity to attain what I have been fighting for in spite of the odds against me; it validates my struggles and the effort I have put in, and allows me the opportunity to succeed in spite of my adversity,” Clark said.
She was also a recipient this year of the $2,500 Stacey Levitt Memorial Award.
Clark was selected for her academic success – she maintained a 97 per cent average in top academic courses – and her volunteer work amid challenging personal circumstances.
She has worked at multiple jobs to support herself after she began living independently at the age of 17 following what she describes as “fallout” from her parents’ divorce.
Clark’s volunteer and extracurricular work has included being a math tutor; playing basketball and volleyball; participating in track and field; performing as a singer and flutist in musical performances; teaching Sunday school preschool and kindergarten to Grade 5; and assisting with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Clark use her towards her tuition at the University of B.C. for a bachelor of science degree.