Komal Hayre of Port Alberni has been named a 2020 Beedie Luminary recipient. Hayre received a $40,000 scholarship to go toward her post-secondary degree in Economics at the University of Victoria. (PHOTO COURTESY KOMAL HAYRE)

Port Alberni student earns $40K Beedie Luminaries scholarship

Komal Hayre will study economics at the University of Victoria

Komal Hayre of Port Alberni has earned a Beedie Luminaries scholarship worth $40,000 for her post-secondary education.

Hayre, who graduated this month from Alberni District Secondary School, will pursue a Bachelor of Economics degree at the University of Victoria (UVic).

“I love working with numbers, and the ability to work with numbers while studying the social aspects of society is good too,” she said.

Hayre considered tackling an engineering degree at Thompson Rivers University, because she loves the math involved in engineering. However, the social studies aspect of economics won her over, and she applied to UVic for their degree program. “Economics will give me multiple paths, which is good for the future,” she said.

Hayre took high academic courses such as calculus, chemistry and physics while attending ADSS and maintained good grades in all her subjects, she said.

When not studying sciences, Hayre competes provincially in karate—she is a brown belt. She participated in musical theatre at Alberni District Secondary School, volunteered with West Coast Prep Camp (setting up temporary housing for the hockey camp) and volunteered at West Coast General Hospital as a ambassador, greeting people at the front door when the hospital was open to the public.

Hayre is appreciative of the opportunities she will receive with the scholarship, including meeting other Beedie luminaries. She liked the business focus of the program. “I’m part of a community now. I’m very thankful because the scholarship gives me a chance to be part of the Beedie community.”

Ryan Beedie of Beedie Luminaries foundation increased the number of students receiving scholarships this year from the expected 105 to 128 because of the coronavirus pandemic and its effect on families. Beedie Luminaries provides up to $40,000 each to resilient students across the province who face financial adversity.

READ: Vancouver Island girl with ‘humble beginnings’ ecstatic after scholarship win

Students are selected based on a number of criteria, including their resilience, determination, empathy and purpose, as well as academic readiness.

Beedie committed $50 million in 2018 to launch the Luminaries social-profit enterprise. An initial cohort of 50 students from Vancouver received grants in May 2019. Beedie used the occasion of his 50th birthday in November 2018 to kickstart the foundation.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Hayre will spend her first semester living at home in Port Alberni and attending classes remotely. “Hopefully, maybe by January I can go live (in Victoria),” she said. Hayre’s economics degree is a four-year program including numerous science classes.

Another Vancouver Island student, Hana Kim of Gold River, also received a $40,000 Beedie Luminaries scholarship that she will put towards medical school.


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