Volume 12 Week 5

Sunday, Jan. 20


Posted Jan. 10

Posted Jan. 9

Posted Jan. 7


Orléans Ward
Matt Luloff

Beacon Hill,
Cyrville Ward
Tim Tierney


(Posted 8 a.m., July 18)
Area students finish at the top of their class
By Fred Sherwin

Cairine Wilson Secondry School grad Misha Kaniyath earned the top mark among this year’s graduating class in Orléans with a 98.2 per cent average. Fred Sherwin/Photo

Bizav Jaffer, Misha Kaniyath and Kian Mansour have two things in common; they all finished at the top of their graduating class at their respective high schools, and they all hope to one day become doctors. Oh, and they have one other thing in common. All three grads plan to major in biomedical science at the University of Ottawa this coming fall.

Mansour had the top mark at Colonel By Secondary School, finishing the year with a 98.3 average, one-tenth of a mark higher than Kaniyath who achieved the highest mark in Orléans with a 98.2 per cent at Cairine Wilson Secondary School.

Mansour was enrolled in Colonel By’s International Baccalaureate program. He was among more than 200 IB students from Kanata who spent nearly two hours on a bus every day to get to and from school.

Kaniyath’s accomplishment is remarkable in that her final average is the highest achieved at Cairine Wilson in almost 12 years.

When she wasn’t studying, Kaniyath was helping to organize events at the school, including this year’s Relay for Life. She also was a member of the science and math clubs and she pursued her passion for art whenever she needed to take a break from the books.

“I also volunteered at the library and I volunteered at the Ottawa General Hospital,” says Kaniyath who earned a scholarship at the University of Ottawa that allows her to work in a research lab during the summer.

Like Kaniyath, Jaffer also volunteered at the Ottawa General. In fact, she was a team leader, spending at least on shift a week at the hospital. Remarkably, the two top grads have yet to meet each other, in spite of the mutual path they’re on.

Jaffer managed to beat out two other rivals to win the Governor General’s medallion at Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School, including her friend and study partner Mayra Monir.

When the final marks came in, Jaffer had a 96.0 per cent average, 0.33 per cent higher than Riley Arseneau, who finished with a 95.67 per cent average, and half a point higher than Monir who finished with a 95.5 per cent average.

Sam Henriques is this year's Governor General's medal recipient at St. Peter High School after achieving an average of 94.6 per cent. Fred Sherwin/Photo

When she wasn’t studying or volunteering at the Ottawa General Hospital, Jaffer worked several shifts a week at Winners and she was a member of the student council.

“Time management is key,” says Jaffer, “and you need to find a balance. You just can’t study all the time or you’ll fry your brain.”

Time management is something Sam Henriques, had down to a tee. Besides earning a 94.6 per cent average, the St. Peter High School grad found time to fulfill the duties of one of the two student trustees on the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board; he played on the school’s soccer, rugby, volleyball and Ultimate Frisbee teams; and he played sax in the school band.

“I did my best to spend my time well. I didn’t want to leave high school with any regrets,” says Henriques, who plans to study nanotechnology engineering at the University of Waterloo this fall.

Asked if he had any advice for students hoping to earn top marks next year, Henriques simply said to do whatever makes them happy.

“Don’t worry about what other people are doing, just do the best you can and have fun. You need to find the aspect of the course that is the most interesting. Find what attracts your interest and fuels your passion for learning.”

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)


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