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Local students awarded Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council Learning Scholarships

MYAC currently accepting applications for new members
2021-08-18 MYAC scholarships Mason Lahde Aidan Hill
Mason Lahde and Aidan Hill, recipients of the 2021 Mayor's Youth Advisory Council Leadership Scholarship

The Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council (MYAC) held its Learning Scholarship, which awards two post-secondary students from Sault Ste. Marie. In a July Facebook post, Mayor Christian Provenzano congratulated Mason Lahde and Aidan Hill for this achievement.

The scholarship awards students who reflect the MYAC’s values, which, according to their website, includes positive advocacy for youths in the city and making an impact, locally, “by providing a community link between youth of Sault Ste. Marie and City Council to encourage the development of facilities and programs that will enhance the quality of life, health, and well-being of the youth.”

This scholarship represents one of many projects the Council takes on. It is looking for new applicants to serve from September to June.

Each scholarship is worth $1,000. Students had the choice to apply for the general applicant pool or the self-identified marginalized person pool. The recipients were privately informed on July 7 and a public announcement was made on July 16.

“The MYAC Leadership Scholarship is the result of the committee’s effort to develop opportunities for local youth,” said Emily Hewgill in an email to SooToday. “In this case, we wanted to help local high-school graduates access post-secondary education.

“Post-secondary education has a significant impact on someone’s earning potential and quality of life – along with their ability to contribute to society and their local community – and we wanted to assist with what is a costly endeavour.”

Hewgill is a recent Superior Heights graduate and chair of MYAC. She has been involved in the committee for four years, previously working as a secretary and vice-chair.

“The committee will be looking for submissions that illustrate an applicant’s demonstration of MYAC’s core values of acting as an advocate for youth and supporting initiatives/organizations that have a positive impact on our community. We are also looking for details about how applicants plan to further develop their leadership skills,” she said.

Funding for the Learning Scholarship comes from the MYAC’s budget, which, in turn, is funded by the City Council.

MYAC was created in 2014, in the early days of Provenzano’s mayorship. Hewgill called it “a way to connect City Council with the community’s youth.” The committee is made up of 12 people, ages 14 to 24. Members must be enrolled in secondary or post-secondary school in the Sault.

What other projects does MYAC do?

It hosts an annual Youth Art Gala, which “serves as a meaningful opportunity for youth to display their creativity and talent in front of an audience.”

It also awards the Youth Fund that, according to the website, is “a micro-grant program that can provide financial support to programs, activities and events that benefit youth in the community. Hewgill noted that this fund has subsided programs like the Splash Pad, Every Breakfast Counts, ARCH and the Bellevue Park Bandshell.”

Students interested in joining the MYAC must submit the application form found on their website.

“I want to recognize the 2020-2021 committee, and thank the outgoing members for their contributions to our community,” said Provenzano in a media release. “I encourage any interested local youth to consider submitting an application.”

Successful candidates will be required to attend monthly meetings, with the possibility for further involvement.

Applications are due Aug. 31.