Jasleen Bahia is an alumna of the VPD Cadet program. But not just any alumna. She finished the program as a Grade 12 student with Cadet Class 5 in 2019 and was also the Cadet Inspector – the highest-ranking Cadet. She learned about VPD Cadets because her older brother was in the program. After hearing him talk about his amazing experience and attending one of the winter promotional ceremonies, she decided that not just was she going to join, but she was going to be promoted higher than him!
She accomplished that and then some.
When you meet Jasleen, it’s not difficult to understand why. She’s articulate, intelligent, passionate, dedicated, energetic and confident.
And while she was certainly born with a lot of it, the VPD Cadet program helped her learn skills, gain experience and prepared her well for life after high school. Jasleen was one of 35 Loran Scholars in 2019 – one of Canada’s most prestigious scholarships, valued at $100,000. Leadership and community service are among the key factors that distinguish Loran Scholars from others, and Jasleen credits VPD Cadets with helping her achieve it.
First year university at Western in Ontario was “crazy” and a completely new experience for Jasleen. She had never been away from home for that long before, and she hadn’t imagined going out of province for school. Starting from scratch as she called it, was daunting, but true to form, Jasleen excelled. She made a lot of new friends, did well with her classes and helped launch a range of sustainability initiatives on campus (you can take the girl out of BC, but….).
She’s now home and will be starting second year online due to the coronavirus pandemic. This summer, she’s working full time as a day camp counsellor and putting her incredible mentorship and leadership skills to the test. While enjoying hiking locally and being back in BC, she’s keen to get back to school and continue her journey.
We are so proud of you, Jasleen!
Jasleen was the keynote speaker at the 2019 Peter M. Brown Cadet Mess Dinner and the 2019 Breakfast with the Chief events. When Foundation donors Shannon and Nairne Gray learned that she hadn’t been outside of BC before and that it would be challenging for her to go back and forth, they donated airmiles to cover the cost of a return flight.
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