| May 31, 2007

Feature Article - May 31, 2007

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Feature Article - May 31, 2007

Sydenham High School student council co-presidents become co-achievers

by JeffGreen (with information provided by the Limestone School Board)

Stephanie Doornekamp and Zannah Matson were two of seven winners of the Limestone Student Achievers awards which were presented at the May 23rd School Board meeting. The awards recognise students who have excelled in the following categories: the arts; athletics; leadership; and academic standard.

In addition to serving as student council co-president, a job she prepared for by being involved in the school leadership camp and school council for the previous three years, Stephanie has excelled in athletics and music.

She has played basketball, rugby and volleyball over the years, and helped bring her rugby team to victory in the Ontario championships. She has also played in the school band every year she has been at the school, playing a number of instruments. She also plays music at her church and at Kiwanis festivals as a representative of the school.


In addition to serving as student council co-president this year, Zannah Matson has been busy engaging in politics, the arts, and a number of local initiatives. She has won awards for public speaking, is a member of the Ontario Youth Parliament, was involved in the parliamentary reform exercise in Ontario through the youth wing, and started a newspaper at Sydenham High School, among other ventures.

Her high academic standing has stood her in good stead in planning for her future. Zannah applied for and received several lucrative scholarships, to Queen’s, McGill, and other universities.

Her name was also submitted for a scholarship to the University of Toronto, under the National Scholarship Program, which covers four years’ tuition plus living expenses in Toronto.

Zannah was familiar with the program because her sister, Ainsley Head, a former student at KCVI in Kingston, received the same scholarship five years ago.

The application process includes the submission of a piece of writing. In Zannah’s case she submitted a piece she had written for high school course on the psychological and sociological impacts of torture. When she was short listed for the scholarship she spent five days in Toronto with 29 other applicants. After a one-on-one interview with a U of T academic about her paper, “we talked about all kinds of things,” Zannah recalls, and an interview with a four-member panel on a variety of topics, Zannah was one of 15 people who were chosen for the scholarship.

So, next year she will be living in a suite-style residence at Innis College in the Annex, and will be studying in the international Development department of the university, under the Social Sciences umbrella. Her goal at this point is to take Peace and Conflict studies in her upper years at the university, “but I might find that goal will change if I find something else that interests me in first year.”

In their final year at Sydenham High School, Stephanie Doornekamp and Zannah Matson worked together on many projects on student council and otherwise, including organizing a LIFE night to empower young women.

“It was a great year, a great concluding year for us,” Zannah Matson recalls.

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