UBC Home Page -
UBC Home Page -
UBC Home Page UBC Home Page -
News Events Directories Search UBC myUBC Login
- -
UBC Public Affairs
UBC Reports
UBC Reports Extras
Goal / Circulation / Deadlines
Letters to the Editor & Opinion Pieces / Feedback
UBC Reports Archives
Media Releases
Services for Media
Services for the Community
Services for UBC Faculty & Staff
Find UBC Experts
Search Site

UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 1 | Jan. 2, 2003

Super Students With Diverse Resumes Win Top Scholarships

Grades alone won’t make the mark.

By Erica Smishek

Their resumes list more accomplishments and activities than many adults can claim in a lifetime. Yet they’re only recent high school graduates, all starting their second terms at UBC.

Heather Buckley, Lik Hang Lee, Edward Man-Tsun Cheung and David Wei Si are the 2002 recipients of the Bank of Montreal National Scholarships. The undergraduate scholarships are each valued at $40,000 over four years and rank among the premier university awards in Canada.

They are awarded to students entering UBC from high school or transferring from other institutions who demonstrate academic excellence in combination with significant contributions to the community through volunteerism, athletics or artistic excellence.

“My biggest challenge was time management, trying to handle academics and activities,” Si says of a high school career at Fraser Heights Secondary in Surrey that included student council, leadership and global issues teams, the student newsletter, the theatre club, rugby, volleyball, basketball and swimming, the Youth Leadership Millennium, Centennial Toast-masters Club and Canadian Cancer Society, among others. He was also the top Grade 11 and 12 science student at his secondary school.

“You have to study smart so you save time,” he explains. “You can’t just cram five hours of studying in because you don’t have those five hours.”

All the scholarship recipients say their level of participation increased as they moved through the school system. All say they took on activities because they enjoyed and were challenged by them, not because they would look good on a resume or scholarship application.

“I wasn’t unique in terms of the amount of my commitments,” Buckley says of life at Calgary’s Western Canada High School. “But nothing came naturally for me. When I succeeded, it was worth more to me, it was a real challenge to keep going. When I was successful, it was because I had to work at it.”

As part of the scholarship application process, the students had stated their ultimate educational and career objectives. Most are already re-thinking their goals in light of the new classes and experiences they’re finding at UBC.

“My stated goal was medicine but I’m just not sure now,” says Cheung, a Science One student from Handsworth Secondary in North Vancouver. “In these short four months, I’ve opened my eyes to new options and different programs of study. There are lots of interesting things out there.”

With different academic challenges and new homes (three of the four are living in residence), the students had limited their extra-curricular activities in the first term but are slowly taking on commitments that mean a lot to them.

Lee, for example, has joined the First-year Committee, Science Undergraduates Society, and the Emerging Leaders Initia-tive, a program designed to help first-year students develop the skills, attitudes and knowledge they need to prepare them to take leadership roles at UBC and beyond.

“It’s very hard to define what leadership means to me,” says Lee, a graduate of David Thompson Secondary in Vancouver. “It’s just a way of life and a lifestyle. It’s something I try to do -- I try to be a leader and help people and serve my community.”

- - -  

Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

to top | UBC.ca » UBC Public Affairs

UBC Public Affairs
310 - 6251 Cecil Green Park Road, Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z1
tel 604.822.3131 | fax 604.822.2684 | e-mail public.affairs@ubc.ca

© Copyright The University of British Columbia, all rights reserved.