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Holy Spirit High student receives $50,000 scholarship

By Mark Squibb/July 15, 2022

Hailey Lewis will be packing her bags for the west coast of Canada later this summer.

The Holy Spirit High student was named a receiptient of the Lester B. Pearson Scholarship, valued at $50,000 over two years for pre-university study at Pearson College, a United World College (UWC) in Victoria, B.C.

Lewis found out in February she had been named a winner, and the news was officially published in June.

“I was driving when I was got the notification, so I didn’t see it,” said Lewis. “When I pulled in to park and turned off ‘Do Not Disturb’ on my phone, and looked at it, I cried, I was so very, very happy to not only have a spot at UWC, but to have also gotten the scholarship. My first reaction was, ‘Call your mom.’”

Pearson College, Canada’s lone UWC, is one of 18 schools across the globe that comprise the UWC movement.

“Pearson is a two-year, pre-university school for students from over 150 countries who live, study and learn together pursuing the International Baccalaureate and an outdoor-oriented experiential education,” according to the school’s website.

Lewis first heard of the school as a grade 9 student at O’Donel High in Mount Pearl.

“I went home that night and did my research on it, and the idea of being able to do the IB diploma, to be around young people that have the same mindset as I do, that want to make change and want to make an impact in the world, and to be able to experience so many new cultures, because it is an international school, I knew from the get-go, I told my mom, ‘When I get older, I am applying for this.’” 

Two years later, and Lewis not only completed her application process (which involved a written application consisting of essay questions and an interview portion for those who passed the written part) but is on her way.

Following her time at UBC, Lewis is considering forensic sciences and physics in university.

Lewis, who will leave for Pearson, named after the Canadian Prime Minister of the same name, in August, encouraged other students to apply for scholarships that they might be interested in.

“There’s absolutely no harm in applying,” said Lewis. “There’s no fee, you have nothing to lose.”
The provincial government contributes $34,000 to the scholarship, with the remainder made up through corporate and community sponsors.

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