Surrey students SHAD-bound

Surrey students – including four from Semiahmoo Peninsula high schools – will spend next month on university campuses across Canada

Fifteen Grade 10 and 11 Surrey students – including four from Semiahmoo Peninsula high schools – are among 701 teens who will spend next month on university campuses across Canada, after being accepted into the SHAD program.

According to a news release, the one-month program is an intense immersion focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM), followed by a connection to “a powerful network featuring some of the brightest young minds in the country, including 30 Rhodes Scholars.”

Surrey students who were accepted – Earl Marriott Secondary’s Xianhai Cao, Andrew Lewis and Olivia Li; Semiahmoo’s Sunah Kim; Fleetwood Park’s Anna Ding, Serena He and Louisa Tambunting; Seaquam’s Aditya Garg; Tamanawis’s Jashaun Grewal; Fraser Heights’s Jerry Jiao and Brandon Park; Pacific Academy’s Justin Lam, Merissa Li and Nick Wang; and Princess Margaret’s Jasmine Rai – will spend July 3 to 29 at one of 12 host universities, interacting with faculty and “visionary corporate leaders.”

High academic achievement, demonstrated leadership skills and a drive to make a difference were among criteria sought in the SHAD applicants.

“SHAD has had an incredible track record as an incubator for fostering leaders in so many areas,” SHAD president Barry Bisson said in the release.

“At SHAD, these brilliant young minds come together from all over the country, are exposed to great ideas and become inspired as part of our network to find ways to make a difference now.”

Last year, seven of 12 Surrey and Delta students accepted into SHAD hailed from Peninsula high schools.

As part of the program, SHAD students are presented with a theme or challenge early on. They then collaborate in small groups to devise an original product or service that addresses the real-world, complex issue, learning along the way how to build a business plan, marketing plan and a working prototype.

“The challenge the students face in one month simulates what they face later in the real world. And they leave the program all fired up about innovation and with an entrepreneurial spirit many never even knew they had,” said Bisson.

“They have to stare down impossible odds and obstacles in one month, take risks, and in the process, start thinking about solving complex global issues.”