Scholarships Open the Door to Opportunity
Posted: December 19, 2011
Brandon Kalbfleisch, grade 11, and Mark Mackey, grade 9, are the 2011 recipients of scholarships offered by St. Andrew’s College to students from Newfoundland and Labrador.
Brandon received the Jim Herder Scholarship while Mark is the second recipient of the Frank Moores Scholarship. Both awards are merit based on a candidate’s academic and athletic acumen, awarded upon entrance and tenable as long as the boy attends school, his work remains at a high standard and he contributes to life at school.
Jim Herder ’64 is an alumnus of the College and a native of St. John's, Nfld., who established the scholarship in his family’s name almost two decades ago for deserving students from his home province.
"I feel that athletics plays such an important role in the development of the complete man, that I stress with the School that I would like our family award to be earned by a student who will contribute in many ways, athletics being one," says Mr. Herder.
As a strong student, triple-A hockey player and striker for his provincial U17 soccer team, Brandon fits the bill nicely. He learned about St. Andrew’s College from friend and neighbour Nicholas Chretien ’11, who graduated from the school in June and was awarded a soccer scholarship to attend St. Lawrence University in upstate New York.
It’s just the sort of opportunity Brandon, 17, hopes to create for himself playing hockey at SAC. The St. Andrew’s Varsity Hockey Saints compete in the Ontario Conference of Independent Schools Athletic Association (CISAA) and the Midwest Prep Hockey League (MPHL). It’s the type of exposure a defenseman hoping to play Division 1 hockey for the NCAA only dreams of.
In a down-home twist, Brandon was reacquainted with David Manning, teacher at SAC and St. John’s native who comes home for the summer where he has coached Brandon in soccer. Brandon played for the Saints Varsity Soccer team coached by Mr. Manning. The team won its first CISAA league play-off title this season since 2001.
“I knew this would be a great experience for me,” says Brandon, who has quickly adjusted to boarding life and is getting the hang of doing all his coursework on the school-issued convertible tablet computer. “I’m making new friends every day, in class, on the soccer field, in my residence. Everyone has been great and we’re kept very busy—it’s a tight schedule and already I feel my organizational skills have improved.”
Brandon’s mother, Linda Rohr, a professor at Memorial University, says the privilege to attend St. Andrew’s to pursue his dreams is “an extraordinary gift.” She says the generous support from the Jim Herder Scholarship has opened the door to a world of possibilities for her son. “I am both excited for Brandon as he begins this journey and thankful to the Herder family for their support.”
Gratitude for the opportunity to attend St. Andrew’s is a sentiment echoed by Mark, recipient of the Frank Moores Scholarship, created with a bequest in his will and added to by friends and family members following his passing in 2005. Mr. Moores ’51 attended SAC from 1945 to 1951, and served as Head Prefect and Commanding Officer of the Cadet Corps.
At 14, Mark wasn’t even born when Mr. Moores was Premier; however, his father Glenn infamously appeared with him in a photo when he was a Boy Scout. That photo of him handing the Premier an apple appeared in the St. John’s Telegram. “My dad is pretty proud of that picture,” says Mark, who thinks it’s pretty cool that Mr. Moores has again touched their family’s lives.
Mark also heard about the College from Nick Chretien, the inaugural recipient of the Frank Moores Scholarship and friend of his sisters, who urged the straight-A student, fluently bilingual in French to apply. “I want to go into engineering and eventually attend MIT,” says Mark. “I think I’ll have a better chance of reaching this goal and being recognized at SAC.”
Mark, who plays right defense for Newfoundland’s U14 soccer team, was a welcome addition to SAC’s U16 team where he plays centre midfield.
Scholarships and bursaries play a big role at St. Andrew’s College in helping boys achieve their potential. This year the School awarded more than $1.9M in financial aid to deserving boys like Brandon and Mark. The School educates boys in grades 6 to 12, and of its 590 student population, 133 students – or 22% – received some form of financial award.
As Canada’s largest boarding school, Brandon and Mark are two of 260 boarders, many from across Canada and representing 25 different countries. The remaining 330 students are day boys from the local communities.
“Scholarships have the potential to change lives,” emphasizes Mr. Herder, who notes the first recipient of his award was Scott Bonnell ’94. “He is a marvelous young man, and took to the School like a duck to water. In the days when St. Andrew's still offered grade 13, Scott arrived for grade 12 and was named a school Prefect in grade 13, quite an accomplishment! He was strong academically and was a leader on the ice playing goal on the Varsity Hockey team, which is a strong interest of mine.”
“I am forever indebted to SAC and Jim Herder,” says Scott, 35, who returned to his alma mater earlier this year to speak at the hockey banquet about his experiences at SAC. His scholarship opened the door for him to play four years of college hockey in the States. He now lives with his wife and young children in New York and works as senior director of identity management at Oracle, after selling his startup company Passlogix to them last year.
Over the years, some of the scholarship recipients have become good friends of the Herder family as adults. Jimmy Healey ’02 from Holyrood, Nfld., is another recipient who played goal and led the Saints Varsity Hockey team to the CISAA championship in 2000. He is now a banker in Boston and Jim and his wife Gail attended his wedding this past summer.
“Justin Quinton ’06 was probably the strongest academic performer we have had as a recipient of our scholarship,” recalls Mr. Herder. Justin was a wonderful athlete as well. On his graduation in 2006 he won the Macdonald Medal, the School's top award to a graduating student. It is given to the boy with the best combination of academics, athletics, and character. That was a proud day."
Story by Cindy Veitch