September 19, 2017

A Girl with Big Dreams

It was the spring of 2004. I was standing in the kitchen at my parents' old house, my childhood home, envelope in hand. I recognized the logo in the top left corner but couldn't help but think, "The envelope is so small. It can't possibly be the answer I'm looking for."

Isn't it amazing how we can remember the exact place and time when significant events in our lives take place? 

You see, in my hands was the letter I had been waiting for. It was the letter that would potentially help shape my future. And when I opened it, I found out it was the letter that said I had been accepted to the university of my choice, into the program of my choice.

Heritage Education Funds Heritage Heroes

Ever since I was a little girl, I have had a strong affinity to the outdoors. Particularly, the water. Like many, as a young girl I had big dreams of becoming a marine biologist. Except, unlike many others, I was bound and determined to make it happen.

And, in a sense, I did.

Heritage Education Funds Heritage Heroes

Four years following that event in my parents' kitchen, I graduated with a degree in Marine and Freshwater Biology and the tools to begin a career doing what I had always loved, being outside.

Fast forward a decade to where I stand today – I’ve worked with dolphins, pet a wolf, dived with sharks and have seen polar bears in the wild. And while I may not have the official title of "Marine Biologist,", saying yes to that letter I held so tightly in my hands has led to some pretty amazing experiences and opportunities doing what I love.

Heritage Education Funds Heritage Heroes

Yes, there have been some bumps and road blocks along the way. I would be lying if I said there weren’t. But, I powered through them. And, if it weren't for the hard work I put in (literally blood, sweat and tears when field work is involved) and my parents investing in my future through an RESP, who knows where I would be today.

Heritage RESPs has a goal to make college and university affordable for every child. Now, in celebration of Canada's 150th, they're launching the Heritage Heroes Campaign, which will be a series of in-depth coast-to-coast features sharing the stories of those that have used a Heritage RESP to kick-start their careers without being mired in student debt. The features will showcase what these grads have accomplished so far in their field of practice/study and community, what they hope to achieve in the future and how RESPs have given them a leg up. Stay tuned!

Heritage Education Funds Heritage Heroes

What's your story? How did you get to where you are today? I'd love to hear!

*Disclosure: As a Heritage Ambassador, I received compensation in exchange for this post. However, all opinions and advice shared are 100% my own. Thank you Heritage!
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