| Jun 26, 2008

Feature Article - June 26, 2008

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Feature Article - June 26, 2008 Sydenham High student wins $75,000 scholarshipBy Jeff Green

Earlier this year, Clara Sellers decided to go to the University of Toronto after graduating from Sydenham High School with a view towards pursuing Peace and Conflict Studies and Environmental Science, and her plans haven’t changed.

What has changed, though, is that she will not be worrying about how to finance her education for the next four years, since she is one of 30 recipients of the Loran Award, which will cover almost all of the costs related to her four-year program.

The Loran awards are given on the basis of “character, service and leadership”. Applicants undergo an extensive interview process. “They are looking for well-rounded people; it is young citizens they are really looking for,” Clara said when interviewed this week.

In Clara’s case, her roles as president of the SHS Respect Committee this past year, as a co-leader of Sweatshop Free, a group devoted to promoting ethically produced clothing, and in the Buy A Net program to prevent malaria in Uganda, were all factors in her selection as the representative to the national interviews from the Kingston-Belleville area.

Of the 72 people interviewed over two days in Toronto this past February, 30 were awarded Loran awards.

“They asked really varied questions and some personal ones, such as describing something that was very hurtful. They also asked unusual questions, such as what key on a piano you would be?” Clara recalls from the interviews.

In their communications the Loran committee said the award is “not a reward for past achievement, it is an investment in the future” and staff from the Loran Foundation work with students throughout their undergraduate careers to “foster their development as leaders”.

Before moving to Toronto this fall, Clara will be working in a lab at Queens this summer.

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