Waterloo Student Wins Schulich Leader Scholarship

Blyth Academy Waterloo student Joel Pollack has been awarded A Schulich Leader Scholarship worth $100,000 to study Mechanical Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan. Joel was nominated by Guidance Counsellor Linda Pernfuss and Principal Kathy Young for his outstanding academic and extra-curricular achievements, he will be entering the Engineering program this fall.

Schulich Leader Scholarships are the largest STEM scholarships in Canada. This scholarships is only awarded to 50 students from across Canada each year.

When asked how it felt when he found out he was selected, Joel had this to say,

Joel Pollack“Hearing that I’d been given a Schulich Leaders award felt like getting plucked out of the post-secondary reality I was expecting and placed into a completely different reality in the blink of an eye. It was so sudden and unexpected. It felt like ‘fake news’. I didn’t believe it at first. I double and triple checked to make sure it was true!”

How will winning this scholarship help you reach your goals?

“The Schulich Leaders scholarship is especially exciting because it values effort and strategic risk-taking, not just performance. It means I have the freedom to explore everything USask offers based on my own curiosity and interest. I can go beyond the courses I’m already good at and try new things without fear.
The magical goal was always to come out of school as close to debt-free as I could. Without a doubt, this award means I’ll be financially stable sooner. It also means I can plan long term for things like housing, and how to stay connected with my family in Ontario.”

Linda Pernfuss, Blyth Academy Waterloo’s Guidance counsellor and one of Joel’s nominators, shared these words about Joel’s selection,

“Blyth Academy Waterloo is a very small private school completing its second year in operation. The number of students eligible to apply for the Schulich scholarship is so much smaller than larger high schools, that I believe this makes Joel’s accomplishment even more significant. It is a huge recognition and honour for our school and the work we are doing in the STEM disciplines. Joel’s accomplishment demonstrates the importance of self-confidence for all students as they work to achieve their goals. Prestigious nation-wide awards such as the Schulich Leader Scholarship are within the reach of these exceptional young people.”

We are so proud of all of Joel’s accomplishments and so excited for him as he takes this next step in his life. Congratulations Joel!

Though our physical doors remain temporarily closed, the minds of our students stay open. Summer classes are continuing to meet on their regular daily schedules, in virtual classrooms with face-to-face instruction and peer interaction.  The Blyth Academy model of small class sizes, flexible scheduling and individualized approach have enabled us to remain faithful to our standards. Our commitment to ongoing and meaningful communication between school, teachers, students and families has been critical to this effort.

Although our students have transitioned into summer mode and COVID-19 restrictions have begun to loosen, we are looking ahead to what September will hold for our campuses and families.
We want to be clear - our preference and our priority is to get students back to our campuses, but we must ensure this is done in a safe and effective way. While we await official guidance from Public Health and the Ministry of Education, a "return to school" task force has been hard at work putting concrete operational plans in place for all likely scenarios. This includes a full return to campus with safeguards, a blended model of virtual and in-campus learning and the continuation of fully virtual classrooms. All scenarios will provide robust learning and live, daily instruction and interaction with teachers and peers. 
With ten campuses across Ontario, we realize that each one of our schools is a unique space and community. We will be implementing across-the-board policies on hand washing, facility cleaning and social distancing measures. Each school is also prepared to pivot individually based on the guidance of local health authorities and to best serve students and families. 
Our recent survey showed that over 80 per cent of Blyth Academy families are eager to return to campuses, and we are hard at work to prepare for this day. As September's scenario becomes clearer and more information becomes available, we will continue to communicate. 

You have Successfully Subscribed!