2020 A. Alcorn Munro Scholarship
Interviewed by Rebecca Davis
Emma Smith is the recipient of our A. Alcorn Munro Post Secondary Study Entrance Scholarship this year. She’s a graduate of Dr. John Hugh Gillis Regional High School in Antigonish, and will receive $1500 to pursue higher education.
The scholarship awarded in Alcorn’s name goes to young people with potential to do great things. The IBANS scholarship committee looks for students who engage with their community, show promising skills, and have a good record in academics.
Emma was nominated by Meghan Hayne, and will attend StFX university in the fall—a tradition among her family members. I had the pleasure of speaking with Emma about her volunteer work, interests and lifestyle, which demonstrate how deserving she is as 2020’s recipient!
What are you going to study? Do you know what you’d like to pursue afterwards?
I’ll be taking a Bachelor of Science, and from there I hope to pursue a career in Forensic Sciences.
What interests or hobbies do you have? What do you love to do?
I’ve been a competitive Highland dancer since I was four, and have been very involved with that community from local volunteering to dance competitions. That also opened me up to participating in Gaelic language and culture, which I love. I’m the first student to complete the brand-new Gaelic IB program, which I helped develop! On top of that, I do plays at the Highland Games and the Keppoch Kitchen Party Series, which I’ve been a part of since I was 14.
What community events have you been a part of over the last few years?
I’ve been part of my school’s student council as a co-head of grad in grade 11, and a social awareness co-head this year, meaning I run the fundraisers for the school to get out and help the community. This includes “We Scare Hunger” and a Christmas toy project where we collect gifts and other products for families in need. Lastly, I’m involved in OllieBots, a project that started when my brother Oliver was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, a rare childhood cancer. They are little wooden robots that are held together by hockey laces, where Oliver loved to play hockey. It started with myself, my dad, and Oliver as a little woodworking project for all of Oliver’s friends, and turned into a fundraiser where the proceeds were donated to the Ewing’s Cancer Foundation of Canada, where I believe we’ve donated over $45,000 to research.
Who has been your main mentor in life, and provided you with guidance towards who you are today, if any?
I’d say I have a lot of mentors in my life, from my family to community members, so it would be hard to pick just one. I find inspiration in many, from my parents to school and dance teachers, but for inspiration and drive I would say Oliver. That’s the way he was; striving to be the best and push through challenges.
We are still coming out of COVID-19 now, but do you have any plans for the summer you’re excited about?
I’m excited to be outside again! I love the outdoors, and my family likes to go on hikes—my dad got us a membership at Keppoch Mountain, so I’m really excited to go hiking there. I also got hired at Boston Pizza, my first big job. I work as a greeter; I run through the night and also do the take-out orders, which I find very fun.