Yar­mouth stu­dents re­ceive LNS awards

South Shore Breaker - - Local - KATHY JOHN­SON kathy.john­[email protected]­laliant.net

Two adult stu­dents from Yar­mouth County are among the re­cip­i­ents of the Lit­er­acy Nova Sco­tia’s 2018-19 Schol­ar­ship and Bur­sary Awards.

Mar­cel South­ern, Brenton, Yar­mouth County, is the re­cip­i­ent of one of the two Lit­er­acy Nova Sco­tia (LNS) Schol­ar­ship Awards, re­ceiv­ing $1,500 to help fur­ther his ed­u­ca­tion and ca­reer. South­ern is cur­rently at­tend­ing the Shel­burne Cam­pus at the Nova Sco­tia Com­mu­nity Col­lege (NSCC).

“I have fi­nally found the courage for go­ing back to school,” he said in a press re­lease. “I com­pleted my high school and I am look­ing for­ward to the elec­tri­cal con­struc­tion course that I am en­rolled in at Shel­burne NSCC. My plan is to get through this year and look for­ward, not back­ward, from where I left off with my old ca­reer. I’m go­ing to fo­cus on get­ting my four blocks as an ap­pren­tice. My goal is to be a con­trac­tor and work for my­self like I used to and pro­vide the qual­ity work that the con­sumer de­serves.”

His for­mer in­struc­tor at Yar­mouth County Learn­ing Net­work says Mar­cel is one of the most mo­ti­vated learn­ers she has taught. “As soon as he joined our adult learn­ing pro­gram, he quickly im­pressed me with his at­ten­tion to de­tail, in­tel­li­gence and abil­ity to work through ab­stract con­cepts and make con­nec­tions. Mar­cel is an ea­ger learner who ex­pects a lot of him­self and is will­ing to do the work in or­der to suc­ceed and rise to the top. Mar­cel has con­sis­tently set re­al­is­tic goals for him­self and sees it through to the end. I am con­fi­dent that what­ever Mar­cel takes on, he will be a suc­cess.”

Also re­ceiv­ing a $1,500 schol­ar­ship was Michael Clyke NSCC Truro cam­pus.

Lit­er­acy Nova Sco­tia also awards three $500 bur­sary awards, with Yar­mouth Com­mu­nity Learn­ing Net­work stu­dent Ash­ley Cog­gins-comeau one of the win­ners. Todd Col­bourne (Pic­tou County Con­tin­u­ous Learn­ing As­so­ci­a­tion) and Cathy Spike (Dart­mouth Learn­ing Net­work) were the other two bur­sary award re­cip­i­ents.

“Lit­er­acy can re­duce the inequalities caused by poverty. These in­di­vid­u­als are putting in the ef­fort to change their lives. If we can elim­i­nate or re­duce a fi­nan­cial chal­lenge, it gives learn­ers a step up to hur­dle the other bar­ri­ers they may face. It’s such a small thing that has huge im­pact,” says LNS ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Jayne Hunter.

“Lit­er­acy mat­ters to all of us, ev­ery day. Our schol­ar­ship and bur­sary re­cip­i­ents are proof of the pos­i­tive changes that hap­pen when adults re­turn to learn­ing and im­prove their lit­er­acy and es­sen­tial skills. They are more likely to be self-re­liant and to con­trib­ute to their com­mu­ni­ties. They are bet­ter able to main­tain their health, fi­nan­cial re­spon­si­bil­i­ties and civic en­gage­ment,” states the press re­lease, adding statis­tics show that 50 per cent of Nova Sco­tians could im­prove their lives by im­prov­ing their lit­er­acy skills.

Money raised through the Nova Sco­tia Peter Gzowski In­vit- ational Golf Tour­na­ment (NSPGI) for lit­er­acy is used by Lit­er­acy Nova Sco­tia to fund schol­ar­ships and bur­saries to learn­ers who are in adult learn­ing pro­grams or have com­pleted a pro­gram and are con­tin­u­ing on to post-sec­ondary ed­u­ca­tion. The an­nual event has raised over $1.5 mil­lion to sup­port lit­er­acy ini­tia­tives across the prov­ince.

The NSPGI be­gan in Nova Sco­tia as a golf tour­na­ment in 1991 when Dr. John Sav­age, who was mayor of Dart­mouth, called his friend Peter Gzowski and in­vited him to hold a PGI tour­na­ment at the Bright­wood Golf Club. The last tour­na­ment was hosted by Gillis Truck­ways in Bad­deck in 2017 to cel­e­brate their 20th an­niver­sary of sup­port­ing lit­er­acy.

“This is a tran­si­tion year for us,” said Hunter. “We can­celled our golf tour­na­ment in June and are go­ing with a Learner Cel­e­bra­tion”, which was held on

Mon­day, Nov. 19, at the Old Or­chard Inn in Wolfville. Hunter said NSPGI 2019 will be held on Tues­day, April 30 in Hal­i­fax with Hal­i­fax Re­gional Mu­nic­i­pal­ity Mayor Mike Sav­age as co-chair along with Chuck Cart­mill of LED Road­ways. “This will be our ma­jor fundraiser and will be a gala din­ner and auc­tion,” she said.

Dona­tions can be made any time via Canada­helps (www.canada­helps.org/en/.) to di­rectly sup­port a learner. LNS is a provin­cial non-profit or­ga­ni­za­tion that has been sup­port­ing the lit­er­acy com­mu­nity since 1992, pro­vid­ing lead­er­ship to ad­vance lit­er­acy by en­sur­ing that all Nova Sco­tians have equal ac­cess to qual­ity lit­er­acy, es­sen­tial skills and life­long learn­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties.

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