Bearing witness as a child to the passion her grandfather brought to his work helped guide Royal Bay valedictorian Aasmita Sharma toward her chosen career.
“I lived with my grandfather until I was eight while I was growing up in India,” Sharma said. “He was a surgeon and a major influence in my life and I miss him a lot. I wanted to go into medicine for most of my life. My long-term goal is to go to medical school and become a surgeon.”
Sharma will get a running start on fulfilling that ambition when she begins studying biology and chemistry at the University of Victoria, assisted by a $28,000 UVic Excellence Scholarship.
“I really enjoyed biology and chemistry, especially the last couple of years,” she explained regarding her decision to focus on those areas of learning.
Sharma is “extremely happy ” to be named one of three valedictorians from the graduating class at Royal Bay Secondary this year.
“It felt like my hard work during the past four years was paying off,” she said regarding her selection. “I’m really happy to be named with my good friend William Shaw. The friendships I’ve formed during my time at Royal Bay have been so supportive in and out of school.”
Sharma, a member of the school’s leadership class since Grade 9, has also been a member of 848 Royal Roads Air Cadets Squadron since Grade 7. She believes her time as a cadet has instilled qualities that will help significantly with the pursuit of her goals.
“Cadets encourage you to take initiative and to become a team player,” she said. “It was crucial in helping me become a leader at school.”
Sharma came to Canada on Dec. 26, 2013, an event she remembers vividly not just for that reason, but because it’s her birthday as well.
“My parents’ decision to bring me to Canada has really shaped my future,” she noted. “I’m so grateful to them for that.”
Sharma thanked her teacher, Sara Checkley, for her help applying for scholarships and university.
“I only had her for one class in Grade 10, but she’s always been there for me.”
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