YOUTH ADVISORY COMMITTEE (YAC) SPENCER BUBIS – PRESIDENT Winnipeg, MB Spencer Bubis is a Grade 11 high school student proudly from Winnipeg, Manitoba. He thoroughly enjoys being actively involved in his school and community through student council and local youth-led organizations. Currently he is a volunteer swim instructor at Manitoba SwimAbility where he teaches children with special needs water-safety and swimming skills. He also enjoys spending his time on creative endeavours through filmmaking and photography, among other passions such as debating, history, arts/culture, and current affairs. Spencer is very excited to have the opportunity to make an impact on a national level through his involvement with the YAC and to contribute to enhancing and promoting the invaluable gift Experiences Canada has to offer. Over Canada’s sesquicentennial, Spencer had the privilege to partake in the Canada 150&Me Ottawa trip and National Youth Forum. Even more so than the places he went, it was the people he met on his Canada 150&Me experience that had the strongest, longest-lasting impact. ISAAC GRASS – VICE PRESIDENT Borden, ON My name is Isaac Grass, I am from Angus, Ontario and this is my second year serving as a member of the YAC. With Experience Canada, I had the privilege to attend two of the Canada 150 & Me Youth Forums, in Vancouver and in Ottawa. It was an amazing experience that allowed me to collaborate with other passionate youth and discuss some of the biggest issues facing our nation today. The knowledge gained was valuable and the memories made are to sure to last a lifetime. Alongside the YAC, I am a member of The Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Program’s Youth Advisory Council and work with the Student’s Commission of Canada as a member of the Social Identity Formation team. I look forward to working with this year’s committee! SANT SINGH – SECRETARY Brampton, ON My name is Sant Singh and I am 16 years old. I was originally born in Punjab, India, however my family and I immigrated to Canada in 2008. I was given the extremely wonderful opportunity to partake in my schools first exchange program, between Brampton, Ontario and Hay River, NWT. It was a life-changing and breathtaking experience, and it truly was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Being part of this exchange opened my eyes to a whole other side of Canada, as it taught me about new cultures and traditions, while removing some of the stigmas and assumptions that I had from my youth. Growing up in Brampton, I have always been part of an extremely large and multicultural community, and going to a small first nations reserve was an experience like no other. Although this exchange trip was educational, it was very fun as well. I went dog-sledding, tobogganing, ice fishing, went to trapping camps, and even drove snowmobiles! The whole point of an exchange is to learn about other cultures, and I believe that we achieved this goal successfully. I will never forget the memories that I made, and I hope that through the YAC, I can be part of inspiring more youth to partake in these life-changing exchange trips. CATHERINE CADIGAN Lindsay, ON I was given the opportunity to travel to British Columbia and Ottawa as a part of the Canada 150&Me Initiative. The experiences I had were incredible and so were the people! These experiences had a profound impact on me and allowed me to make new friends while raising awareness about the issues our country faces, especially those directly connected to my community. I gained an interest in areas I had no previous experience in and applied this new passion to my home town to create positive change. I applied to be a part of YAC because I want to ensure other students can have the same amazing opportunities that I had. DANÈLE DEQUIER Ste-Anne, MB I come from a small town called Ste-Anne, Manitoba. I am involved in my school council as well as my provincial youth association. My passions include theater, music, writing, leadership, social justice, and bilingualism. I have incredible memories from my travels with the Canada 150&Me program last year. I had the chance to participate in the forums in Vancouver and Ottawa. These experiences have allowed me to grow my understanding of social justice issues discussed at the forums, discover different places in Canada, and connect with young people across the country. MAXIME BOUDREAU Bathurst, NB My name is Maxime Boudreau, I’m 14 years old from Bathurst, New Brunswick. I’m currently enrolled in the 9th grade at L’école Secondaire Nepisiguit de Bathurst. I play hockey and soccer and have participated in the provincial science fair for the past 3 years, including winning a silver medal. I think the best part of an Experiences Canada exchange is observing life in other regions of the country and meeting new people. The most valuable result of my exchanges is the new friends I have made. I joined the Youth Advisory Committee because I was looking for a new challenge and chance to learn from others. Looking ahead, I want to finish my high school diploma and make a man of myself! NATHANIAL VINCENT Steadybrook, NL In April 2016, through Experiences Canada, I travelled to Toronto, London, Stratford, Hamilton, and Niagara Falls, with the Atlantic Boychoir from Newfoundland and Labrador. I believe that the most valuable outcome of my Experiences Canada exchange was the chance to meet, collaborate, learn, and perform with world renowned and very knowledgeable choral conductors and singers in Canada. This experience has increased my confidence in my leadership and musical abilities and has made me a more responsible and independent individual. I really wanted to be more involved with Experiences Canada, so I joined the Youth Advisory Committee. What I am hoping to gain from the YAC is the experience of spending time with youth of my age who also want to expand their leadership skills and are passionate about their interests and abilities. I also want to advise and inspire other youth in their communities about the Experiences Canada program, so they also have the chance to travel and take part in what great opportunities and experiences our Country has to offer. MATHILDE INKEL Rouyn-Noranda, QC Last year, I had the chance to travel to Edmonton, Alberta for a student exchange. It has been a wonderful experience. I met extraordinary people while discovering a magnificent part of Canada. Also, I learned so much about their unique traditions and culture. In Canada, we have the chance to have a diversified and multiethnic country, which means that we do not have to travel far away to discover a whole new world. During my participation in the YAC, my main objective is to inspire my generation as well as the future generations to travel across Canada. SAVILUK THOMASSIE Kangirsuk, QC My name is Saviluk and I was born in Montreal and raised in Kangirsuk, a small town north of Quebec. This year is my last year of high school and I am excited to further my education. I have participated in an Experiences Canada exchange and also had the amazing experience of participating on the Students on Ice expedition and the Arctic Winter Games. MIKAELLE SIMARD Alma, QC Hi! I am 16 years old and I come from a small town from northern Quebec. I am a Secondary IV student. I am also fortunate to be bilingual. The exchange I did last year took me to Toronto, where I got to know the city, but also the people who live there and the culture around them. I have always been someone who loves to get actively involved in the different events and opportunities available to me. I have gained a lot of experience from being on various committees, but I am sure that the YAC will teach me even more! I love music, winter, writing, the phenomenon of mental health and much more. I consider myself to be someone who is motivated, persevering and a leader. I hope to be useful in the years to come! CÉDRIK LESAGE Trois-Rivieres, QC I am 15 years old and I live in Quebec. Last year, when I found out that I would part of the student exchange, I was super excited. We were twinned with the school in Sparwood, a small town in southern British Columbia. It was an amazing experience and if I could, I would do it again without hesitation. Later, my teacher told me about the YAC and I thought it might be a good experience. I am someone with strong leadership and who likes to give his opinion. What I liked about my experience was meeting new people and being able to make strong friendships, as well as being able to learn about new cultures. KIARA GAMROTH Kangirsuk, QC I live on a farm near the small town of Halkirk, Alberta. I had the privilege of going to Napanee, Ontario on my exchange in May of 2017. It was a wonderful experience and it helped me develop my leadership skills. The exchange showed me how diverse Canada really is. I made several lifelong friends that I have visited since the exchange. My passions are playing sports, reading, and spending time with my family. Coaching volleyball, basketball, and ski racing are some of the things I like to do in my spare time. I’m really excited to give back to this extraordinary program. KAILYN SHERREN Cornwall, PEI My name is Kailyn Sherren and I’m from Prince Edward Island! I’m in my final year at Bluefield High School where I keep active within my school’s community. I’m a member of the Student Council, and a member of the school’s rugby and soccer teams. Since 2016 I’ve been a volunteer at my local hospital where I interact with patients and medical teams. Following this I attended the Canadian Student Leadership Conference. During my grade ten year, I travelled to Vegreville, Alberta with 20 of my classmates through Experiences Canada. This was one of my best experiences, getting to make new friendships and experiencing what life is like on the other side of our country. I applied for the Youth Advisory Committee because I want other Canadian students to experience what I did. I want to build on future exchanges and promote the value of Experiences Canada. My experience left a lasting impact on my life and I want to spread this joy throughout Canada. CHRISTOPHER HALLER Bella Coola, BC Yaw smawtumkuks (Hello my friend) My name is Christopher Haller, I’m 16 years old. I come from two nations Nuxalk (Bella Coola BC) and Xeni Gwet’in (Nemiah Valley), I am currently residing in Nuxalk Nation. I graduate in one more year. After graduation I plan on going to university to take up engineering. Right now for hobbies I enjoy playing sports, keeping fit and learning my culture. I feel when I leave my community for university, it’s important I know my identity and culture so I can have that to rely on through university and my adult life. Last year with my school through the exchanges program we traveled to Pukatawagan, Manitoba. It was a great experience and I’m glad I was given the opportunity. STUTWANIITSCW (Thank You!) TAYLOR REIMER Brandon, MB I am currently a grade 11 student enrolled at Vincent Massey High School located in Brandon, Manitoba. I am very active within the school community by playing a significant roll on the T.A.D.D (teens against destructive driving) committee as well as being a leader on the variety rugby team. Currently I volunteer at Westmans Communication Group where I am a sports photographer at hockey games. In November of 2016, I had the opportunity to be a part of an exchange trip with kids from Vancouver, British Columbia. The one major thing I enjoyed about this trip was learning about the different cultures from the kids involved within the program as well as being in their shoes and living in a whole other environment. I am looking forward to being a part of the YAC and giving these types of opportunities to kids just like us.