Pawel Pater '21

School & Program
McMaster, Health Sciences
St. George’s University, Medical Degree Program

Meadowridge Student Since
Junior Kindergarten

Born in
Lower Hutt, New Zealand

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m studious. I enjoy skating—that’s something I’ve been enjoying more and more and I try to go out often but have to subsidize lack of ice time with rollerblading. That’s been fun. I like spending time with friends. I started fencing when I was in Grade 5, and I even volunteer as a coach with younger students. Coaching can be frustrating at times, but I really enjoy it. I play the violin, and participate and play in festivals. I’m also in cadets, which I enjoy a lot.

How did you first find yourself at Meadowridge?

My parents were considering lots of schools when we moved to Canada, but we chose Meadowridge because they visited and enjoyed speaking with Mr. Burke. I couldn’t speak English back then, only Polish, and I remember we had a typewriter in class that was lots of fun to play with. I also remember naptime, which is weird because kids don’t want to nap but that would be so nice now!

Tell us about your year ahead.

Well, I’m still decided between two schools – each with its unique benefits – so we will have to see. Once I’m finished, however, I know I want to work in the healthcare system. I’m excited to go to university either way. We’ll see!

When I was in Grade 5, we did a heart dissection and I remember my friends being creeped out but I wanted to hold [the heart] and touch it and was so curious. As I got older, I taught myself how the digestive system works. The Diploma Programme (DP) also encouraged my love of science.

What was it about Health Sciences?

It’s difficult to pick one reason. My parents are both doctors, and we were used to them going to work and my sister and I taking over the house. When I was in Grade 5, we did a heart dissection and I remember my friends being creeped out but I wanted to hold it and touch it and was so curious. As I got older, I taught myself how the digestive system works. The Diploma Programme (DP) also encouraged my love of science. It’s been a rewarding experience, building my knowledge and learning. Oh, I also remember my classes with Ms. Hops and her making my brain turn from time to time. I’d like to become a family doctor. They are the foundation and help and direct parents each day. Every single day will be different with a new diagnosis.

What are you most looking forward to in the year ahead?

It’ll be easier to say once my decision is made, but I’m excited to meet new people. I’ve been with the same friends for a while, so I’m ready for that. I’m also interested in the courses and to try things outside my comfort zone. I’d like to take a geography class if I can. Wherever I go, I plan to branch out a bit. I will practice fencing and plan to find some community service wherever I go. 

What will you miss most as you move onto the next chapter?

My friends. I’ll miss my teachers too, but not all the reflections! Mrs. Rajeev goes out of her way for us. If we’re learning a concept, she’ll plan a lab to help us learn. She really keeps it interesting, and it never feels repetitive. Chemistry labs were also challenging but rewarding, and Biology was always great. I enjoyed my Internal Assessments (IA). I knew what I wanted to study for my Math IA before I had to complete it. We have a giant chess board outside of Dr. Stevenson’s lab, but to play we need to fill the pieces with water. One day I was sitting in class and thought, hm, I’m going to figure out how much water these pieces take! Through the Diploma Programme (DP) I’ve been able to discover many interests.

Any parting words of wisdom?

This might be pessimistic, but it won’t get any easier. Just make a point of taking a step back after each project and finding time to relax. Every Friday, some of my classmates would keep on studying, but I always took the next full day off. It’s important to go outside, take a walk, ride a bike…. I remember spending a lot of time in the North Forest. Enjoy the little things in life, the little accomplishments.

Congratulations to our 2021 Graduates

The Class of 2021 is graduating from one of the most rigorous academic programs in the world, and they become graduates during one of the most challenging times. Throughout the past year, and throughout their journey with us at Meadowridge, they have exhibited grace, courage, intelligence, and kindness.

They are all going on to prestigious schools nationally and internationally, to join rigorous programs in a variety of disciplines, and, most importantly, to make a positive impact in our world. We are proud of what they have achieved, and despite knowing change is the only certainty, we are confident that these young people are prepared to not only meet the future, but also to create it.

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