Bay Roberts teen earns big scholarship
Bay Roberts student earns massive scholarship
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.