Conference of Palliser's student leaders Friday

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Corporate News School News

Nearly 200 Grade 9 to 11 students from across Palliser Regional Schools will converge in Calgary for the division’s first Student Leadership Conference Friday.

The day will feature eight presentations by 16 Palliser students sharing their thoughts on leadership, whether confidence, mentorship or contributing globally or locally.

A highlight of the day will be a keynote address by former professional hockey player Sheldon Kennedy, whose courageous decision to go public about sexual abuse he suffered resulted in him becoming a leading advocate for victims of sexual abuse and for prevention programs.

Closing out the event will be a presentation by Scott Hammell, a professional entertainer, magician and motivational speaker whose words and actions encourage others to find and pursue their passion.

The event is made possible with financial support from KPMG, a gold sponsor, and RBC Royal Bank.

Calgary Christian Secondary School is serving as the host school for this event, which will be held at a venue near the school.

Palliser Superintendent Kevin Gietz said the leadership event will be a showcase of the strength of student leadership across the division.

“For many years, Palliser emphasized character education and leadership as keys to ensuring our schools are safe and caring spaces for students and staff,” Gietz said. “Friday’s event is an extension of the work we’ve been seeing in our schools year after year.”

Student presenters met with the organizing committee, Gietz and Associate Superintendent (Education Services) Pat Rivard, who has been leading the event planning, in early March to provide a preview of their presentations. Their presentations are 10 minutes or less and include deeply personal stories of inspiration, giving and courage.

“I’m really looking forward to seeing these presentations and watching the other students’ reactions,” Gietz said. “It takes courage to share your passion with your peers, and these students are engaging, inspiring and fun. I think the students in attendance are in for a treat.”

All the participants will receive a survey following the event asking their thoughts on the day and their key takeaways that might strengthen leadership in their schools moving forward.

The student presenters are:

Shaye Pierson, Sheila Entz and Emma Duda from Coalhurst High School; Leah Auch from County Central High School, Vulcan; Sophia Cliplef from Calgary Christian Secondary School; Ieesha Roberts of Master’s College in Calgary; Katelyn Arik, Colten Gurr and Allison Feenstra from Noble Central School; Nataly Flores and Dustin Fellger from Picture Butte High School; Celine Reyes, John Ayon and Lindsey Nguyen from Heritage Christian Academy in Calgary; and Jess Shipton and Kayley Dueck from Kate Andrews High School in Coaldale.

Follow Palliser's Instagram and Twitter feeds Friday from about 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. using #PASL15. It promises to be a great day.