Bay Roberts teen earns big schol­ar­ship

Bay Roberts stu­dent earns mas­sive schol­ar­ship

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY AN­DREW ROBIN­SON ed­i­tor@cb­n­com­

Macken­zie Collins of Bay Roberts loves sci­ence, and cred­its a cou­ple of teach­ers at As­cen­sion Col­le­giate for help­ing spark that in­ter­est. Now the Grade 12 stu­dent is set to be­gin stud­ies in biomed­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing at an On­tario univer­sity this fall thanks to a pres­ti­gious $80,000 schol­ar­ship.

Macken­zie Collins is a busy Grade 12 stu­dent at As­cen­sion Col­le­giate. Be­yond study­ing to main­tain high marks in her classes, the Bay Roberts teen has a full plate when it comes to ex­tra-cur­ric­u­lar ac­tiv­i­ties.

That’s a big rea­son why the 17-year-old is par­tic­u­larly pleased to earn a Schulich Leader Schol­ar­ship, a sci­ence-based schol­ar­ship val­ued at $80,000. Fifty are awarded an­nu­ally in Canada.

“It’s been pretty in­cred­i­ble,” she told The Com­pass last week. “In or­der to even ap­ply for these schol­ar­ships, you have to do a lot of ex­tra cur­ric­u­lar, and I think it kind of val­i­dates all the stress I’ve put my­self through and all the hard work.”

She learned about the Schulich schol­ar­ship while re­search­ing univer­si­ties she was con­sid­er­ing ap­ply­ing to. Notic­ing it was ap­pli­ca­ble to her in­ter­est in biomed­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing, Collins man­aged to se­cure a nom­i­na­tion through her school.

She re­ceived an email last month with the good news. It said the Univer­sity of Water­loo in Water­loo, Ont. se­lected her for the schol­ar­ship.

“I’ve ap­plied to a lot of schol­ar­ships, and that one was a pretty big one. I can’t say I ex­pected to get it at all.”

Collins is a skilled mu­si­cian who plays pi­ano, gui­tar, vi­o­lin and flute and teaches mu­sic in her spare time. At the most re­cent re­gional drama fes­ti­val, she earned a spe­cial ad­ju­di­ca­tor’s award for act­ing. She’s won mul­ti­ple speak off com­pe­ti­tions and is a co-vale­dic­to­rian for her grad­u­at­ing class at As­cen­sion. Collins is also an adept scuba diver.

Al­though she’s good a lot of things, sci­ence was al­ways her favourite sub­ject in school. She cred­its teach­ers like Lisa Doucette and Dave Keith for spark­ing her in­ter­est in chem­istry and physics.

“I think that teach­ers like those two that are re­ally pas­sion­ate about sci­ence are part of the rea­son I’m so in­ter­ested in it my­self, be­cause they make it in­ter­est­ing for me.”

Af­ter Collins com­pletes her hon­ours de­gree in biomed­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing, she plans to study medicine. While it’s not set in stone what dis­ci­pline she’ll look to pur­sue, Collins ex­presses an in­ter­est in sur- gery, anes­the­si­ol­ogy and pe­di­atric medicine.

As for the fall, Collins looks for­ward to mak­ing the move to Water­loo, a city with a pop­u­la­tion com­pa­ra­ble to St. John’s.

“It’s quite nerve-wrack­ing, but it’s pretty ex­cit­ing too. I’ve al­ways re­ally liked to travel, and I’ve spent a few sum­mers in Que­bec and done trips with school … For me, I think it would be a re­ally awe­some ex­pe­ri­ence liv­ing in a dif­fer­ent city and prov­ince al­to­gether. I’m pretty ner­vous to leave my par­ents, but I think it will be good for me.”


Macken­zie Collins of Bay Roberts, pic­tured here with an act­ing award she won at this year’s re­gional drama fes­ti­val, re­cently learned she’ll at­tend the Univer­sity of Water­loo with a Schulich Leader Schol­ar­ship val­ued at $80,000.


Macken­zie Collins en­joys trav­el­ling. This photo was taken dur­ing an Easter break trip to Italy.

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