Local student of Princeton Secondary School, Ally Myers has achieved the highest level in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award program.
On May 25 Myers received her Silver level award from the Lieutenant Governor of B.C., The Honourable Judith Guichon, at Government House in Victoria. Myers achieved her Gold in April of this year and will receive her award in a future ceremony.
She gave the closing speech for the ceremony, encouraging award recipients to carry through to the Gold Award and extending thanks to the parents, teachers, assessors and the Lieutenant Governor for their support of the program. “It was a bit nerve wracking at first,” said Myers, “but once I got started with my speech I was okay.”
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an individual challenge for young Canadians between the ages of 14 to 25 to encourage personal discovery, growth, self-reliance, perseverance, and responsibility. The award was founded by His Royal Highness, Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh.
During a visit to the University of Victoria while in grade nine, Myers was told about the The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and decided to take up the personal challenge.
Since then Myers has made great strides and completed all three levels of the award program.
She has travelled to India and China volunteering her time with children. She has volunteered with Olive Ridley Turtle Conservation, delivered clothing to the poor in Mexico and raised over $10,000 for the Good Shephard Agricultural Mission located in India.
Myers has enjoyed challenges like sailing a Tall Ship through Desolation Sound and rafting in the Rockies. On a local level, Myers volunteers with Princeton Ground Search and Rescue (PGSAR) and most recently volunteered over 150 hours to teach disabled skiers at Sun Peaks Resort.
“She has brought youthful enthusiasm to the team,” said Secretary/Treasurer of PGSAR, Randy Rorvick. “Ally showed interest and learns well, she is almost ready to graduate from member in training to becoming certified. We enjoy working with her,” he added.
On top of her volunteer work Myers is an honour roll student who is actively involved in school sports, band and outdoor activities like sailing, skiing and snowboarding.
On June 22 Myers will join her peers in celebrating graduation with ceremonies and prom. Two days later, she will be on her way to South Africa for six weeks to teach youth in Cape Town how to swim and surf.
“It feels good to be able to help children,” said Myers, “I have lots of fun and I get to meet lots of new people.”
Near the end of August, Myers will be off to Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick.
She plans to study geophysics and achieve a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry or Physics—most likely both.
Through her travels Myers feels that she has gained insight into how frail the planet and ecosystem are and how important conservation is.
Myers believes that Antarctica holds the answers to the lingering questions on global warming. She plans to someday visit Antarctica as it is “the quintessential playground for the scientific mind.”