Thiago Amin '21

School & Program
University of British Columbia, Political Science, Math & Education

Meadowridge Student Since
Grade 11

Born in
Joinville, Santa Catarina, Brazil

Tell us a bit about yourself.

Well, I’m originally from Brazil but came to Meadowridge when I was in Grade 11. My goal is to work in education – more specifically, I want to become a teacher or work in public policy in education. I really like hanging out with friends. My house is the meeting point and everyone comes over to hang out, cook, watch movies or TV shows. I really like nature as well: it helps to calm me down and not think about anything else. Watching old TV shows also helps me do that. I like watching Nickelodeon, which lets me act like a bit of a kid, and any bad 2000-something comedy is a great way to detox from any stress. I’m also of Italian, German, Lebanese and Syrian descent – all those cultures are really loud!

How did you first find yourself at Meadowridge?

I attended a local public school when I first arrived to Canada, but we were told we would have to pay because of my international status. That was stressful because we couldn’t afford it. We were trying to figure something out when, during a visit with a family friend, we heard about Meadowridge. I sent in my transcripts to apply for a scholarship and found out I had been accepted one week before classes were about to start. I got all my uniform items and everything else in a rush – it was super last minute! I’m so grateful to my mom for coming here to provide me with a better education.

I believe all problems stem from a lack in education. If a society doesn’t have a good education, nothing else can work. Education helps people move social classes and make conscious decisions when voting. My goal is to eventually, after my education, go back to Brazil and serve as a politician or educator. That’ll be after my undergrad, Masters, and a Ph.D. – so maybe in 15 years!

At my old school, I had to branch out and look for people because everyone already had their set groups. But here, they asked one of the students – Andries – to show me around and he ended up becoming one of my best friends. Another student messaged me on Instagram and welcomed me to the school. I had help from teachers, students, and administrators to fit in… it was the smoothest transition. I was the new kid, but this place felt like home in two or three weeks. I was also excited to be in Kanaka House – I thought the House System was so cool!

Tell us about your year ahead.

I earned a full-ride scholarship to the University of British Columbia (UBC). I like so many areas, so there’s lots I want to explore. I’ll be majoring in political science and earning a double minor in math and education. I hope to do some research when I can, and will for sure continue with my volunteerism. I volunteer as a tutor on my own, including tutoring students back home in Brazil, but I also hope to help in the UBC AMS Tutoring Centre. I’m going to be living in the dorms, and am hoping for a more community-focused house at UBC.

At my old school, I had to branch out and look for people because everyone already had their set groups. But here, they asked one of the students – Andries – to show me around and he ended up becoming one of my best friends. Another student messaged me on Instagram and welcomed me to the school. I had help from teachers, students, and administrators to fit in… it was the smoothest transition.

What was it about Political Science, Math and Education?

Well, they all relate to education in some way. Political science is public policy, math is teaching, and education is, well, education. I believe all problems stem from a lack in education. If a society doesn’t have a good education, nothing else can work. Education helps people move social classes and make conscious decisions when voting. My goal is to eventually, after my education, go back to Brazil and serve as a politician or educator. That’ll be after my undergrad, Masters, and a Ph.D. – so maybe in 15 years! I need to study so I can truly understand what I’m talking about to make a change.

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

Finding balance. That was one thing I had to sacrifice during my Diploma Programme (DP) years. I want to find balance, exercise, do extracurriculars and get good marks. I want to be independent – like, truly independent on my own. That’s going to be really interesting. I’m also excited about my classes. I can’t wait to take math at a university level, where the learning becomes much more theoretical and less numerical. I’m also excited because I can study political science and education, which were a bit too specific for the DP.

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

The thing I’ll miss the most is the amount of support I received here. The students, the teachers, the IB… these people and the programme helped prepare me for university. I’ll miss the House System and Spirit Days. When I first got to Meadowridge, I couldn’t figure out why we were going to Loon Lake for Week Without Walls (WWOW). But it was great! It helped me not only connect with my peers, but also learn mental health techniques, prepare for the IB, and connect to the outdoors. I’ll miss these and all parts of Meadowridge. It’s kind of sad, moving on to the next place. Meadowridge prepared me the best I could. I can confidently say I couldn’t have gotten my university scholarship if it wasn’t for Meadowridge.

Any parting words of wisdom?

It’s pretty simple: be a teenager. Be an adult when you have to be, but keep yourself a teenager as well. You’re going to blink and the years will have passed. You’re going to make mistakes, your plans are going to change dramatically, and you have to be okay with life throwing some curveballs at you. Don’t get too caught up in it all. Have fun, watch Nickelodeon shows, and hang out with your friends.

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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