Innovation Magazine July-August 2019


ENGINEERS AND GEOSCIENTISTS BC FOUNDATION SUPPORTS DESERVING STUDENTS ABOUT THE FOUNDATION The Engineers and Geoscientists BC Foundation provides scholarships and bursaries to exceptional engineering and geoscience students in BC. The Foundation encourages excellence and dedication by reducing financial barriers faced by students. A volunteer board of directors—all of whom are professional engineers and geoscientists registered with Engineers and Geoscientists BC—provides strategic direction to the Foundation. Awards ranging from $750 to $2,500 were distributed to 50 students across the province in 2018-2019. MEET AARYN SAHLEN, ENGINEERING STUDENT AND SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENT Aaryn Sahlen is a student in the UNBC/UBC Environmental Engineering program. When she graduates next year with a Bachelor of Applied Science, she will be the first in her immediate family to earn a university degree. Aaryn’s path to university was not typical. She worked for a decade after high school to help save for more education, and to gain perspective on her future career path. “My drive and life experience [from my years in the work force] help me remember what all the sacrifices and late nights are really for,” she said. Now, Aaryn’s hard work is paying off. In 2018, Aaryn received the Foundation’s Sheri Plewes Scholarship for Women in Engineering, which recognizes women with exceptional academics, interpersonal skills, social awareness, and leadership potential. After years of involvement with the Girl Guides in her youth, Aaryn is now a Girl Guide leader; she also volunteers with the Environmental Engineering Student Association and Women in Engineering UBC, and she has established a study group for her peers. Diversity in engineering is important to Aaryn. “The problems [our future] will present us will need our best and brightest,” she said. Aaryn recognizes that women and under-represented groups bring different perspectives to the table, and provide alternative problem-solving approaches. For her part, Aaryn strives to build up the talents of female engineering students. Aaryn’s third year of study cost $8,000 in tuition, and books and residence cost another $7,200. Receiving the Sheri Plewes Scholarship took a big weight off her shoulders. “I didn’t have to worry and stress about my finances,” Aaryn said. “I can focus more on school, volunteering, and getting a good night’s sleep.” The Foundation is proud to support students like Aaryn, and the contributions she’ll make to the engineering profession and society.

Aaryn Sahlen, engineering student and scholarship recipient

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