Some students help their fellow students, while others help their teachers.
Then there’s Hogan Ingram.
Ingram, a 17-year-old student at Armbrae Academy, won the Lieutenant Governor’s Respectful Citizenship Award this week. Among the reasons for his nomination was his work in creating a unit on aboriginal studies at his school.
Ingram says there is a need to educate people about indigenous issues in Nova Scotia.
“Especially rural schools in Nova Scotia, there’s still a lot a racism and prejudice towards First Nations,” said Ingram.
When Ingram heard about residential schools and their impact on First Nations he took the initiative to approach his teacher and create a unit devoted to the issue. He believes that First Nations have much to offer.
“Their traditions are just really noble and I see them as superior to what a lot of people live by today,” he said.
Ingram is well known at Armbrae for his work. He won a humanitarian award for his goodwill trip to Cuba and helped establish a school garden.
He says it’s the little things that make a big difference.
“I think a lot of the time people think about helping people in this big way,” he said. “My dad’s always told me just to do what you love and be a helping hand all the way through life.”
Ingram is graduating this year and plans to go to university. He has applied to McGill, UBC, and Quest University. No matter where he ends up, Ingram says that he wants to continue to spread goodwill.
“It’s an honour to receive awards, but it’s really the stuff you do and the results you get from it that matters to me,” he said. “You always have to always look for ways to make things better.”