Saskatoon high school student wins $100K scholarship

Kylie Flynn was ecstatic to find out she won the $100,00 Loran Award. Mandy Vocke / Global News

A Grade 12 student at Marion Graham Collegiate has a lot to celebrate after winning a Loran Award. The prestigious award is valued at $100,000.

Thirty-six students — out of nearly 5,200 applicants across Canada — received the award,

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Flynn was shocked when she found out she was a winner.

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“After the person calling me said, ‘I’m calling with exciting news’, I kind of just tuned out the rest of what she was saying,” Flynn recalled.

“Eventually I started listening again just because I knew that was probably good news. I was really excited and ran up and told my mom right away.”

The scholarship is awarded to students who have a strong character, serve the community and are leaders.

Flynn developed a strong work ethic when she became a competitive swimmer when she was nine-years-old. She has stayed involved with swimming and now coaches at the Saskatoon Dolphins Swim Club.

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But her leadership skills go beyond the water.

Flynn has donated her time to help cognitively challenged youth at a summer program in Saskatoon, which inspired her to start a similar program at her school.

“A lot of those kids were actually at the summer camp, so I got the chance to meet them then and see them in the halls,” Flynn said.

“I wanted to get our student council involved and kind of integrate them into the rest of the school community so we go in there every other Wednesday at lunch and just play music games. It’s a lot of fun.”

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Karen Peterson, Marion Graham Collegiate’s principal, said Flynn is a leader at the school.

“She’s a really great role model for how you can have a balanced life — academics and the other pieces, too,” Peterson said.

“We’re just so proud of the acknowledgment and for Kylie.”

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Flynn has a lot she wants to accomplish during her post-secondary education and plans to attend the University of Ottawa in the fall. Flynn has family members who have struggled with mental health and addictions, which is why she wants to become an addictions psychiatrist one day.

The Loran Award offers major financial support as Flynn pursues her dreams, but it also offers reassurance.

“Sometimes I look at the things I do and I don’t think they live up to what other people are doing, but then to know that just because it’s what I’m passionate about means that it is helping other people, so that’s a nice feeling,” Flynn said.