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Eight students hailing from three different high schools assembled at the College’s Penticton campus on Thursday, June 16, to receive their entrance scholarships.
“Meeting students and their parents is rewarding for us,” says Yasmin Thorpe. “The parents appreciate the assistance and the students are keen to talk about what they hope to achieve with their studies and their futures.”
“Education opens so many doors,” says Rick Thorpe. “Yasmin and I feel incredibly proud to have been able to make a difference in the lives of students over the years.”
Scholarship recipient Hector Carlos of Penticton Secondary is one of those students reaching for the stars with a little help from the Thorpes.
“I am determined to obtain a degree in Physics and Astronomy,” says Carlos, who plans to complete the Associate of Science Degree program at the College before heading to the University of Victoria to finish his Bachelor of Science. “This scholarship is going to motivate me even more to achieve my goal and will reduce my stress along the way, so I can focus on my learning instead of student debt.”
Born in Mexico, Carlos immigrated to Canada in 2002 and moved the Penticton in 2008.
“I am excited to make my own way in the world; this scholarship is going to help me to transfer my acquired knowledge and skills into a profession that will allow me to lead a productive life.”
Honor Hollman, also a Grade 12 student at Penticton Secondary, is considering a career in education, social work, or nursing; she will take the first step toward that future when she begins the Associate of Arts Degree program at the College in September.
“I am very excited to receive this award,” says Hollman, “and I can’t wait to see where it takes me in the future.”
“I really hope to give back to the community through my future career, so I look forward to paying it forward and using this award not only to benefit myself, but to get to a place where I can benefit others one day.”
The Thorpes have a long history of championing education in the region, having supported students at Okanagan College and UBC Okanagan for more than a decade.
2016 marked the 10th anniversary of the Rick and Yasmin Thorpe & Friends Entrance Scholarships for Okanagan College, which were established in 2006. To mark the occasion, the Thorpes awarded 10 $2,500 bursaries.
Since inception, $92,750 has been awarded from the Thorpe’s fund to 43 recipients at Okanagan College.
The Rick and Yasmin Thorpe & Friends Scholarship assists students who are graduates of, or will be graduating from, a secondary school located on the west side of Okanagan Lake, from Penticton to Killiney Beach, registering in full‐time studies at the College. The award also supports students already enrolled at the College who are continuing their studies. Recipients must be undertaking courses in business, viticulture, agriculture, engineering, tourism/hospitality, trades, technologies, English or creative writing, science, and nursing.
“We are constantly amazed at the generosity of our donors in Penticton,” says Donna Lomas, Regional Dean for the South Okanagan-Similkameen. “The Thorpes have been deeply supportive of the College over the years, including spearheading the fundraising campaign for the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence.
“Awards like these send a message to students that the community and the College are behind them and invested in their futures.”
The application deadline for the 2017 Rick and Yasmin Thorpe & Friends Scholarships will be in early March 2017. Students are encouraged to review the application guidelines at www.okanagan.bc.ca/awards or email@example.com for more information.