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Canadian High School Student Awarded $25,000 for Excelling in Academics and Community Service

A Coalhurst High School student in Alberta, Canada, Shaye Anne Pierson has won a $25,000 scholarship from the national STEAM Horizon Awards and the Ingenium Foundation.

Pierson was one of only five students to win the award in Canada. The classically trained singer and academic polymath was recognized for her advanced abilities in the arts as well as in the sciences and maths, and for her community leadership skills.

STEAM is an updated definition of the more well-known STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) fields, the “A” in STEAM stands for the Arts and Design field. The emphasis in STEAM is on creativity, innovation and the ability to communicate a higher mission for science and technology.

Pierson’s collective average on her last report card was 99 per cent and she is a member of the Palliser Regional Schools Blue Team. As a member of the Blue Team she has demonstrated a strong leadership capacity, having helped to organize various leadership conferences and peer-mentoring opportunities.

Pierson, who is mezzo-soprano, has also won numerous Kiwanis Music Festival awards in the past. She confided to The Herald on Wednesday her favourite song is “Go the Distance” from Walt Disney’s animated film “Hercules,” and sees in the lyrics something of her own personal theme.

“You just got to keep on trying until you make it,” she explained. “I plan to be a teacher. I am going to go to U of L to take a degree in science and in one in education. I hope to go on to achieve a master’s, and possibly a doctorate. I just really like going to school, so if I have the money to I am just going to keep on going.”

The $25,000 from STEAM Horizons should certainly help in that respect.

“I would love to say a huge thank you to the STEAM Horizon Awards and Ingenium Foundation,” said Pierson. “I am so grateful because now I actually have money to go to school, and I really didn’t before.”

Pierson will travel to Ottawa on Tuesday to receive her scholarship award from Science Minister Kristy Duncan at a special ceremony at the Canadian Science and Technology Museum.


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