Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Perth student awarded $70,000 scholarship from TD’s Community Leadership program

Clara Misener was awarded a $70,000 scholarship through the TD Scholarships for Community Leadership program. – Photo submitted by the UCDSB

Clara Misener, a Grade 12 student at Perth & District Collegiate Institute (PDCI), has been awarded a $70,000 scholarship for her university education through the TD Scholarships for Community Leadership program.

This prestigious award recognizes Canadian student leaders for their contributions to community change and progress. This year, 20 students across Canada received the scholarship.

Since Grade 8, Clara has been actively engaged in environmental initiatives at her school and in her community. She joined the Lanark Youth Climate Action Group and co-founded a chapter of the David Suzuki Foundation Butterflyway Project. Currently, Clara is assisting citizens in establishing pollinator gardens and supporting the creation of shared community gardens in the region.

“When I started, it was during the pandemic so there wasn’t a lot to do,” says Clara. “Seeing how it was something safe for people to come out and do was really what motivated me. Just seeing smiles on people’s faces and having a lot of people get involved. That was one of the biggest motivators for me.”

Clara says that winning the scholarship “still feels unreal.” She explains that she applied thinking it was worth a shot, but didn’t think she would get it.

She adds that it’s been great to connect with fellow recipients.

“I’m one of 20 in Canada, so I got to meet all of the other scholars and hear about their stories. So, it’s this giant network of people that I’ll have through university. It’s really exciting too.”

PDCI Principal Dean Fournier praised Clara’s achievements and contributions to the school community.

“She’s one of our top students academically, but not only that she’s involved in student council, she spearheaded the student and parent led prom committee, she took the bull by the horns and organized the grad sweaters, and she plays sports at the school. Anything you want, anytime you want something done, you could ask Clara and it’ll get done.”

This September, Clara will begin her studies in bioengineering at McGill University, where she hopes to focus on making medical solutions more environmentally friendly.

Information taken from a media release from the Upper Canada District School Board

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