Hannah Moores, a Grade 12 student at Exploits Valley High School in Grand Falls-Windsor, is one of four Newfoundland students who are finalists for the Loran Scholarship, a $100,000 scholarship given to post-secondary students who show community leadership. (Submitted by Hannah Moores)
Four students from Newfoundland and Labrador are part of an illustrious group of high school students vying for a prestigious award worth $100,000.
The Loran award, given to up to 36 students across Canada, is awarded to students who have a positive impact on their communities through their leadership potential, academic achievement and extracurricular activities.
This year, there were more than 5,200 applicants, which has been narrowed down to 90 finalists. Finalists who aren't selected still receive $6,000.
There are four students from Newfoundland and Labrador who are part of the finalist group: Aidan Sampson of St. Lewis, Sadie MacDonnell of Corner Brook, Abby Welshman of Mount Moriah and Hannah Moores of Grand Falls-Windsor.
"There's, like, no words to describe it. It feels incredible just knowing that I've been able to get this far with it," Moores told CBC News on Monday, adding she found out over the holiday break that she's a finalist.
"It was definitely, probably the best Christmas gift that I received," she said. "I was jumping up and down, I was so excited. It was like no way that I could contain anything."
Moores said she's been involved in French immersion and athletics throughout her schooling and recently travelled to New Brunswick to the Canadian Student Leadership Conference.
Meghan Moore, CEO of the Loran Scholars Foundation, said the foundation has given 36 Loran awards to students in Newfoundland and Labrador over its 34-year history.
Loran Scholars Foundation CEO Meghan Moore says the foundation is looking to support students who are community leaders outside of traditional moulds. (Jeremy Lim/Submitted by Meghan Moore)
Moore said the scholarship searches for students of strong character and aims to find those who embody the best of their region outside a traditional leadership mould.
"[It's] more about how they operate in the world rather than what they do. So we're looking for people who have an orientation towards serving others, and that could be something that's really small and potentially doesn't look that consequential to someone," Moore said.
"It's the young person that's there day in day out, you know, volunteering at little league. Or they're helping day in day out at their part-time job and showing leadership in the capacity…. It's how and why they do what they do, rather than what they do."
Moores is planning to attend MUN and pursue a double major in French and English with the hopes of teaching French immersion, but is also eyeing the University of New Brunswick if she were to win the scholarship.
She's now preparing for the final stage, which will feature four separate interviews and meeting with other finalists in Toronto.
"A lot of it is going to be just reading over your application and just, like, making little mental notes about anything that they can ask you. 'Cause they'll ask you anything."