Eight graduating students in Abbotsford have been recognized as Indigenous role models.
The recognition program started in 2002 as a means to celebrate Indigenous graduates who have a purposeful plan beyond graduation, through the Abbotsford School District and the Mamal’awt Indigenous Education Centre.
Each year, the students are chosen by the Indiginous Education Advisory Committee, who review applications submitted by the students themselves.
These students are acknowledged for connecting to their culture, leadership, and service in their schools and communities, and for their aspirations towards future goals. To date, approximately 48 students from the school district have been recognized in this program.
The 2022 Indigenous Role Models are:
- Adam Pallick from Robert Bateman secondary has an enthusiasm for Indigenous culture and mental health. He plans to continue learning, working, and eventually move into a management position with his current employer.
- Avery Federspiel from Rick Hansen secondary is a strong school-based Indigenous leader and plans to attend UBC or UVIC with hopes of becoming a secondary school teacher.
- Madison Chaplin from Abbotsford senior secondary has a passion for amplifying Indigenous voices. She plans to obtain her Kinesiology degree and will continue to be involved with Indigenous programs.
- Janae Delorme from Abbotsford senior secondary is passionate about embracing her culture. She intends to pursue a path of helping others and making a difference each and every day.
- Paige Collins from Yale secondary is an Indigenous leader who loves fine arts and plans to attend Emily Carr to obtain a Bachelor of Fine Arts.
- Rodney Legare from Yale secondary plans to continue to learn about his Métis culture and attend UFV trades to become a mechanic and earn his Red Seal.
- Blaise Morin from W.J. Mouat secondary has a profound connection to his community through his drumming and will be attending the Justice Institute of BC to earn a Security License.
- Sasha Lambert from W.J. Mouat secondary has a passion for mathematics and learning. He plans to attend UBC and aims to eventually major in computer science.
“Our Knowledge Keeper, Dr. Gwendolyn Point, has taught us that by highlighting these young people as Indigenous Role Models, we stand them up, encourage them to take their place in society, and blanket them with the support of their community,” said Darlene MacDonald, District Principal for Indigenous Education. “Our hope is that these students remember this day as they move forward on their journey. We are immensely proud of each of them. These graduates represent the hope we have in the future.”
The school district has shared each student’s individual story on their website.
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