What is the Gr. 12 EXPLORE program at RJC all about?
EXPLORE is about learning who you are and what you want to do after high school. We also spend a lot of time talking about leadership and how there are lots of different leadership styles. I’m finding that leadership plays a big role in building self-confidence and learning more about your own strengths.
What are some different things you’ve done this year as part of the EXPLORE program?
We started the year with the Grade 12 EXPLORE retreat at Shekinah – that was all about us getting to know each other. We also went to Batoche for the National Day of Truth & Reconciliation, visited Sask Polytechnic, University of Saskatchewan, and the See Your Future career fair. We are also planning the Giving Tuesday fundraiser at the end of November.
How are all those different experiences connected?
I feel like RJC is always trying to get us to learn in different ways. We spend a lot of time out of the classroom and things always ‘click’ for me when we do off-campus activities. I think you learn a lot about yourself when you are bonding with your classmates on those activities. In EXPLORE, when we talk about leadership, I feel like we can practice what that means when we’re with our classmates or students who are new to the school.
What was your take-away from your visit to Batoche?
When we went to Batoche, I learned way more about history than I would’ve in the classroom. I remember when we were visiting, listening to the [interpreter] talk to us, I remembered things that Jill had taught us in class, and everything just made so much more sense. I think it was also special that we went to recognize the National Day for Truth & Reconciliation and wear our orange shirts there. We were able to see and learn more about a place that is really important to the Métis people and I think it had more of an impact on me than if we just sat in school all day.
What about your visit to See Your Future, University of Saskatchewan & Sask Polytechnic?
I felt so much more relaxed about my future after visiting those places. I had no idea what I wanted to do after high school, and now I feel like I have a bit more direction. When we visited Sask Polytechnic there was an admissions person that spoke to us and explained everything so well. Even though I’m still thinking about what I want to do, I know a bit more about the process of going to post-secondary and know how to access the support I might need when I start. I also feel like RJC will help me along the way as I think about what I want to do.
How have your last three years of high school been at RJC?
RJC’s changed my life for the better. I feel like a completely different person. It sounds cliché, but I think I’m the best version of myself here. I think about the shy and quiet person I was when I started In Grade 10, and now I feel like I’m more confident and I can be someone people can come talk to. I feel like I’ve grown to be a leader and be a support for other new students. I think that’s because other people modeled that for me. It’s okay to come out of your shell and you can be who you want to be here.