Sahir Shivji has set off to the Maritimes to participate in the prestigious Shad Valley program.

Semi student heads to Shad Valley

Leadership student to experience post-secondary life at Dalhousie University.

A Semiahmoo leadership student has set off to experience a first taste of post-secondary life for the month of July while participating in the prestigous Shad Valley program.

Sahir Shivji left Saturday for Maritimes for the program, which selects 600 of the nation’s brightest secondary students to send to 10 universities across the country to expose them to topics not regularly featured in the high school curriculum.

The Grade 11 student said he had heard much about the program through family members.

“I have had two of my cousins already attend Shad Valley and they’ve only had good things to say. So when I became of age to apply, it was definitely on my list of priorities,” he said. “Honestly, I wasn’t sure I would get in, because the competition is quite stiff and there so many students from around the country who get into this program. I just hoped for the best.”

Now in Halifax, Shivji will attend lectures, workshops and team-building activities run by the Dalhousie University faculty and industry leaders.

Shivji worked on both his grades and maintaining a social balance at school and in the community, in order to qualify for the program,

“They don’t just look for academics, they look for a well-rounded person. You have to keep your grades up but you need to work on your extra-curricular activities,” he said, noting he organized the student vote for the May 14 provincial election, participated in the Surrey School District’s energy conservation cup and organized an eco-fashion shoot.

“These are the things I really enjoy doing. There really is no point in just doing academics all the time. It’s important to be a well-rounded person and make an impact on your school.”

While at Dalhousie, Shivji said, he will be looking into the law program and focus on creating connections with fellow students.

“As youth, we’re going to continue moving forward, and it’s these connections we make at an early age that are really going to affect my life,” he said.

Shad Valley looks for students in Grade 10-12 with high academic achievement and a passion for science, engineering, math or technology. For more information, visit


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