Each year, Golden Secondary School gives out an award for the highest academic achievement to a graduating student.
This year, recipient Nicholas McClean was tutoring after hours when he was surprised by an audience and principal Iris Trask, who presented him with the Governor General’s Academic Medal.
“I was quite surprised. Feeling pretty proud of myself,” McClean said after he received the award.
McClean is still considering his options for the future.
Originally, he wanted to be a raft guide, but now he is considering getting education through the Canadian Armed Forces. He likes the idea of camaraderie while earning an education.
“But, I’m still keen to do rafting,” he said.
The Governor General’s Academic Medal was first awarded in 1873. Schools that wish to present the award can give it to only one student.
This award is the most prestigious award that a student in a Canadian school can receive.
The tradition has continued for more than 145 years, encouraging scholarship across the nation and recognizing exemplary students.
The academic medals are only awarded for academic excellence.
Students in secondary school can receive a bronze, post-secondary diploma levels can receive the collegiate bronze, silver at the undergraduate level, and gold at the graduate level.
The medals are awarded based only on academic marks, regardless of their work outside of school, citizenship, moral behaviour, or popularity.
The school is responsible for determining a winner every year, and the award cannot be shared between students.
The academic average of the high school student includes their marks from Grade 11 and 12.
McClean graduated in June, 2018, and continues to live in Golden for the time being.
He often tutors other students at the high school with their academics.