To each and every Canon Collins alum,
I have often replayed in my mind my interview for the Scholar’s Scholar Award in an effort to understand ‘why me’? I consider myself, as an aspiring change-maker, someone who still has a great deal to learn. And so, receiving the Scholar’s Scholar Award affirmed me in the most special way. When someone believes in your potential, they communicate that you are seen, and that your dreams are valid and important. That is the gift that each of you have given me. It is this gift, which I will always cherish, that inspires my actions.
My journey into my Master’s degree has been largely made by the people in my life who have believed in my potential and have invested in me, whether it be emotionally, academically or financially. I would not be here without you all. You have put into practice the African proverb: It takes a village to raise a child. I am humbled to have been your ‘child’. I hope to be an academic one day for two reasons. First, my desire to ensure that there is justice and equity in conservation. More importantly, I want to be the kind of lecturer and supervisor who gives to students what has been given to me: someone who believes in their potential. This year, using a portion of my award, I have started on that journey. I am mentoring a Grade 11 learner. I hope to be to her what you have been to me.
Just as one small stone can make many ripples, so is our collective desire for change powerful enough to have a rippling effect in empowering the youth of Africa!
Thank you for supporting this important initiative.
The 2019 Canon Collins Scholars’ Scholar