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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Charles Gagnon

Charles Gagnon

A student committed to overcoming his language disability by making continuous efforts

Communicating is a challenge for Charles Gagnon because he suffers from severe dysphasia, a language disorder that affects his ability to express himself. This student at XXX high school has to make continuous efforts in order to succeed: he works relentlessly, attends remedial classes and uses the homework assistance services. And his hard work paid off because when he began high school, Charles was assigned an education plan with modified expectations but in just one year he exceeded the expectations and rejoined the regular program. What’s more, he raised the bar for himself by enrolling in a program focusing on computer science which involves voice recording assignments. After successfully completing Secondary 4, the doors will be wide open for him to make his dreams a reality: to take a heavy equipment mechanics course, obtain his Class 1 driver’s licence, drive heavy vehicles and pursue training in tree felling and wood processing.


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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Maude-Sophie Villeneuve

Maude-Sophie Villeneuve

A student committed to pursuing her passions and creating the winning conditions for fulfilling her dreams

Maude-Sophie Villeneuve’s path was once fraught with setbacks but the student at Jean-Dolbeau high school learned from the experience that she needed to tackle adversity head on. After two years in the special education program due to an attention deficit disorder as well as severe dyslexia and dysorthographia, she joined the regular program, a remarkable feat she accomplished by rolling up her sleeves. But in May 2015, at the age of only 15 Maude-Sophie was struck by illness and diagnosed with cancer. After spending weeks in hospital, she returned to school only to suffer yet another setback in September when a relapse forced her to put her studies on hold. When she finally went back to school, this future administrative technician fully applied herself to her studies and got involved in numerous projects including artwork, the community kitchen and woodworking. She is also honorary co-president of the Héma-Québec blood drive at her school, a role that holds special meaning and that she assumes with pride.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Briller de tout bois

Briller de tout bois

Students committed to salvaging wood to create unique fashion accessories

In order to provide its woodworking trainees with state-of-the-art equipment, the high school needed to find a way of financing the purchase of a digital wood carver and it was the Dolbeau-Mistassini Rotary Club that came to the rescue. In return for their assistance, the Club asked that the students create a gift that could be offered to members at one of their events. The partnership led to an initiative that was both artistic and motivating: the students decided to make wooden bowties and bracelets with wooden charms. And the project has been beneficial to all concerned. For the school, it was an opportunity to build ties with the community, for the students, it was a chance to use their creativity and develop their entrepreneurial skills while boosting their self-esteem and sense of responsibility and for the Rotary Club, it was a way of offering a unique gift. What’s more, the initiative was also a means of recycling materials that would normally have just been thrown away. Educational, original and ecological, you can’t get much better than that!


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Rassembler pour l’amitié

Rassembler pour l’amitié

Students committed to bringing local residents together to celebrate Christmas

The Christmas festivities held in Normandin last December were given a whole new meaning. When a municipal representative appealed for ideas for creating a rallying event for the annual tree lighting ceremony, a group of students answered the call for ideas for this family event with boundless ingenuity. They began by building a wooden, hand-decorated wall which would shelter children from the wind. Students in the music concentration program sang Christmas carols, lights were strung, there was hot chocolate for all and a burning wood fire. They even organized a paper lantern release to symbolize world peace. On the day, no less than 300 people – children, teenagers, adults and seniors – gathered together in the city park to experience this magical moment. There were smiles, children’s laughter and the sound of everyone humming along to the songs in unison: the atmosphere was truly festive and the young organizers can definitely say Mission Accomplished!


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Yannick Harvey

Yannick Harvey

A teacher committed to providing students with opportunities to build their self-esteem and sense of pride

There is always an electrifying atmosphere in the workshop where Yannick Harvey teaches woodworking at Jean-Gauthier high school. Students – several of whom have learning disabilities – head there not only to attend classes but also to build their self-esteem. What’s more, it is a place that allows them to prepare in order to confidently begin their adult life with the added bonus of having acquired work experience. To bring their projects to life, Yannick went to great lengths to find less expensive wood and a local company has agreed to supply the class with an annual contribution of $10,000 in wood. Furniture, stage sets, billboards, repairs to school furniture, the projects are both wide ranging and educational. In addition to his teaching workload, Yannick is always ready and willing to lend a hand during special activities, among other things by accompanying students on school outings. He is the type of teacher that young people can always rely on for support in their personal development.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 La course au secondaire

La course au secondaire

Students committed to running between Québec City and Montréal and adopting a healthy lifestyle

For the past six years, students at Jean-Gauthier high school have taken part in a unique challenge in mid-May called the Course au secondaire. During this 270-km relay race between Québec City and Montréal, 40 students take it in turns to cover the entire distance in a period of 36 hours. To attain their personal objectives, they need to start training three times a week as early as November. What’s amazing is that some of them have a hard time running for just five minutes at the first training sessions but end up being able to run their allotted 30 km, rain or shine. Quite a feat! To finance the challenge, the students – who are often from underprivileged backgrounds – carry out various fund-raising initiatives: the search for sponsors, bagging groceries at the supermarket, odd jobs during the Jeux du Québec, raffles… The months spent preparing and training on a regular basis teach them the importance of perseverance, commitment and solidarity, all qualities which will benefit them long after the race is over.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 À l'unisson pour la Fondation

À l'unisson pour la Fondation

Students committed to raising funds to help provide adequate food to their peers

At Cité étudiante high school in Roberval, when ice cream goes back on sale at lunchtime and recess, it’s usually a sign that spring has arrived but it also ushers in the relaunch of another initiative that benefits one and all. Every cone and

tub of ice cream sold are not only small pleasures for those eating them, they are also a means of raising funds to provide lunch for students who would otherwise have to get through the day on an empty stomach. It was Keven Duchesne, a student in the individualized learning program, who came up with this creative fund-raising idea for the Foundation and his idea was backed by all members of staff, the school administration, students and community organizations. Over the past two years, the project has helped raise a total of $800 for the Cité étudiante foundation and provided no fewer than 160 lunches for less fortunate students. And it has to be said that an initiative that enables young people to satisfy their sweet tooth while giving fellow students the chance to satisfy their hunger is a very delicious idea indeed!


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Martin Gagné

Martin Gagné

A teacher committed to promoting physical activity

“A healthy mind in a healthy body.” Martin Gagné lives by this adage every day. The teacher firmly believes that physical activity and healthy lifestyle habits provide a solid basis on which young people can build their future. To encourage them to become more active, he established the Cyclones, a running club with around fifteen members. Moreover, every year, he pursues the ambitious target of inspiring ten students in each of his ten groups to develop a taste for physical activity, which translates into a total of one hundred young and healthy people. And he can say mission accomplished because, thanks to his encouragement, no fewer than 300 students have started going to the fitness room. And Martin pursues these same goals outside the school walls. He is the assistant coach for the Marquis de Jonquière team and every year accompanies young people on their 250-km circuit of the lake during the Tour du lac event.  Martin Gagné has made being healthy and finding equilibrium through physical activity a way of life.


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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Anabelle Dubé

Anabelle Dubé

A student committed to doing well in school despite difficult personal circumstances

Life has not been kind to Anabelle Dubé. Very early on, this graduate at Cité étudiante had to take on the kind of responsibilities that people her age rarely need to assume. When she began high school, she started working in the cafeteria to help ease the financial burden on her family and had to assist her brothers with their homework, help her parents had difficulty providing. Yet despite her difficult family circumstances coupled with painful bullying episodes that made entering high school very distressing, Anabelle chose to persevere. She spoke openly about her circumstances with the school principal, attended remedial sessions, asked for help when she needed it, surrounded herself with positive friends and worked relentlessly, and she did all this while holding down a job. The young girl who used to be bullied and struggled at school has now become a student involved in all kinds of projects: the yearbook, school canteen and school foundation. A perfect example of resilience!


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Ginette Mailloux

Ginette Mailloux

A teacher committed to helping young people progress through dedication and by setting an example

Ginette Mailloux, a mathematics teacher, doesn’t like being inactive and believes that getting involved is a way of investing in the future. Preparing pancakes, chocolate fondue or breakfast for the entire school, participating in fundraising campaigns to support student initiatives, accompanying students on trips to Toronto, Washington, New York or Boston and, as coordinator of the school prom, helping less fortunate students find an outfit for this important event are all ways in which she makes a positive impact on the lives of others. “If everyone gives the best of themselves, you can move mountains with a teaspoon,” she says. And she does this every day while encouraging others to follow in her footsteps. Involved in a thousand and one projects, this mother of five truly makes a difference and expects nothing in return apart from a smile or deep sigh of contentment and pride.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Josée Plourde

Josée Plourde

A school organization technician committed to encouraging young people to follow their dreams

Josée Plourde, a school organization technician at Camille-Lavoie high school, firmly believes that everyone should have the chance to fulfil their dreams. And because everybody needs to have faith and be encouraged in their ambitions, she gives of her time to students. A gifted singer, musician and artist, she willingly participates in concerts and festivals as well as hosting various school events such as the Meritas galas. Josée is also physically active: she gives spinning classes for her colleagues, takes part in the biking tour of the lake and is manager of the 2017 Jeux du Québec site, inspiring others to follow her lead in their quest for personal excellence. And in a desire to step out of her comfort zone, she participated in the Roses des sables rally which proved to be quite a challenge, both in terms of securing funding – $25,000 in just one year –, and while she was there, in the desert. She came back a completely different person, more convinced than ever that she wanted to help young people follow their dreams.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 La Grande Odyssée musicale

La Grande Odyssée musicale

Students committed to using their talents in the performing arts to support their school foundation

The Grande Odyssée musicale, a large-scale show produced every year by students and staff at L’Odyssée Lafontaine/Dominique-Racine high school, is one of the most anticipated cultural events in the Chicoutimi area. Approximately one hundred people – students, community volunteers, teachers and other collaborators – join forces to stage this high-calibre musical revue with the goal of raising money to fill the school foundation’s coffers. Through the sale of tickets to the show, they manage to raise around $10,000 and this precious money is then used to help students enrol in sports or cultural activities, join a sports or art concentration program or purchase the required clothing for the activity. The project is a perfect example of the type of initiative that enables schools to gain recognition in the community while showcasing the positive impact and potential of young people.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12

A teacher committed to making his school a pleasant and rewarding living environment for all

The classes given by Simon Villeneuve, a teacher in the work-oriented training program at Fréchette high school, are a school of life for students. He pilots an unending succession of projects and activities aimed at giving students with special needs the opportunity to enjoy different experiences as a group and develop skills that will be valuable throughout their adult lives. These skills include leadership, self-knowledge and communication, all of which will help them become independent, well-rounded and fulfilled adults. The discovery and outdoors activities enable them to try out kayaking, hiking and ice climbing, while the community-based ones enable them to carry out projects that help improve the well-being of their fellow citizens. And there’s also the home economics activities like cooking, budgeting and various responsibilities. Simon provides them with something of key importance: the chance to make headway in life with assurance and aplomb.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STAFF MEMBER AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Patricia Gauthier

Patricia Gauthier

A teacher committed to introducing music to students from all backgrounds

Music is an integral part of Patricia Gauthier’s daily life. The music teacher is well known in high schools across the Dolbeau-Mistassini area for her ability to adjust her teaching methods according to the needs of each individual student, from the beginners to advanced. In a disadvantaged area, where many young people have to cope with learning disabilities, her knack for passing on her passion for music is such that many students decide to keep at it, a fact reflected in the number of students who sign up again for classes even though it’s a discipline requiring constant effort. A number of her students have taken part in television competitions, theatrical productions, book writing and various other artistic projects and what they all have in common is that they discovered their passions thanks to her. Dolbeau-Mistassini is said to be a “hotbed of artists” and those who attended Patricia Gauthier’s classes stand out for their quest for excellence and their professionalism.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Camille Bégin

Camille Bégin

A student committed to using her artistic talent to exert of positive influence on young people

Camille Bégin definitely has culture running through her veins. Singing, violin, music, theatre and improvisation are all artistic disciplines that allow her to express herself and exert a positive influence on her fellow students. As the school’s minister for culture and communications, this graduate at Camille-Lavoie high school in Alma set up cultural lunchtimes, an initiative enabling young people to explore different forms of artistic expression. The activity includes karaoke sessions, film screenings, public jam sessions and much more. And it therefore comes as no surprise that this gifted communicator expertly hosted the 2015-2016 regional finals of the Grands Talents au secondaire contest and regularly contributes to the Accès-Culture television show. By sharing her passions, she has become a source of inspiration for all, both the younger students at school and her fellow citizens.


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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Mathieu Tremblay

Mathieu Tremblay

A student committed to not letting his physical disability define his life

Mathieu Tremblay has had to show tremendous resilience since birth. Born with a spinal cord disability that makes it complicated for him to get around as well as suffering from partial deafness, this student in the integrated arts program with a specialization in music at Normandin high school refuses to let his disability become a barrier. While doctors doubted he would ever be able to walk, strong-willed Mathieu took his first steps at the age of three. Although he knew playing hockey was not an option, he discovered sledge skating, baseball and dek hockey. He also excels at table tennis and has competed against Olympic-calibre athletes, and was even named Athlete with a Disability of the Year at the regional sports awards gala. Similarly, his deafness hasn’t prevented him from playing the violin and trumpet. With his impeccable grades, lasting friendships and amazing resilience, Mathieu is a source of inspiration for everyone who crosses his path.


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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Alan Tremblay

Alan Tremblay

A student committed to rising above Asperger’s Syndrome and fulfilling his dreams

Alan Tremblay, a graduate at Jean-Gauthier high school, suffers from high-functioning Asperger’s Syndrome, a condition that could easily have jeopardized his social interactions. But he has managed to come out of his shell and is about to complete his high school studies with impeccable grades. How? By working hard, attending remedial classes, building on his strengths, namely his sense of responsibility, and through perseverance and a keen work ethic. His dream is to become a security officer and he already scrupulously applies the rules of forest survival taught in the wildlife resources course and complies with the building regulations he learned in woodworking classes. He also designs posters to help his classmates adhere to these rules. His work ethic, desire to help and dedication also prompted him to take the initiative to help improve the signage on snowmobile trails in his region. Allan has every reason to believe that his disability will never prevent him from fulfilling his dreams.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED PROJECT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Les Cousins de Fréchette

Les Cousins de Fréchette

Students committed to using entertainment to promote community civility and engagement

Les Cousins de Fréchette is a project set up by six students at Fréchette high school seeking to express themselves through video. The budding filmmakers undertake all aspects of their productions: from the conception stage to the editing, writing and even acting in front of the camera. As well as producing videos during special events and theme weeks, such as the one focusing on community civility, they have another major achievement under their belt, one that benefits all young people in their community: they raised $50,000 to construct a skatepark after successfully rallying everyone around the project. Some of their videos have been viewed more than 5,500 times on YouTube and the school staff and administration say they’ve noticed a marked improvement in the overall atmosphere at school. And their talents have attracted attention well beyond the borders of their hometown as the team is currently working on a video for the public health department. It just goes to show that the next generation of filmmakers shows great promise!


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Félix Côté

Félix Côté

A student committed to ensuring everyone has their rightful place at school

Félix Côté, a graduate at Polyvalente Jean-Dolbeau, gets involved in a multitude of projects that call on her leadership skills, and one of her top priorities is to ensure students of all different abilities are received with open arms. Whether they follow an individual education plan, are in the special education program or simply students who have just arrived at her school, they all deserve their rightful place and as a member of the student council she strives to make them all feel welcome. And when it comes to championing a cause, she’ll be there. Among her accomplishments, she organized a fund-raising campaign to support the family of a student with cancer who needed to be treated outside the region. The efforts invested by Félix and her friends paid off, because they managed to raise $3,000. And despite the many hours she devotes to her extracurricular activities, Félix maintains excellent grades. Kindness, tolerance, openness: Félix espouses values that benefit society as a whole.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Roxanne Choquet

Roxanne Choquet

A student committed to taking increased action to advocate causes close to her heart

When it comes to getting a project off the ground or making life more enjoyable for her peers, Roxane Choquet is always close at hand. Although committed to her studies, she finds time to get involved in a staggering number of projects: theatre troupe, improvisation, the school prom. This graduate at XXX high school spares no effort to infuse her school with renewed vitality and her actions have tangible benefits for countless families in her community. She pilots dozens of initiatives that help the more vulnerable: a benefit concert for a palliative care home, the sale of lightbulbs, her involvement in the Déjeune don event, food drives, and thematic days to champion a cause… Roxane is everywhere and has a high degree of credibility with the people around her. What motivates her to do all this? A concern for others and the pleasure of meeting new people. Roxane is a source of inspiration for everyone around her.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Tristan Jean

Tristan Jean

A student committed to building a dynamic living environment by getting involved in school politics

Since the day he arrived at Jean-Gauthier high school, Tristan Jean has been involved in a multitude of activities. After three years in the student government, this year he holds the position of prime minister. And he never hesitates to put his shoulder to the wheel, notably for the cheerleading competition and at the Grand défi Pierre Lavoie’s high school run, which he has taken part in for the past five years. And to finish his high school years on a high note, he is currently involved in the preparations for the school prom and in the production of the yearbook. Last year, he also had the opportunity to put his entrepreneurial spirit to good use as a facilitator for a youth service cooperative, a role typically reserved for college students. A busy schedule you say? Tristan still finds time to launch projects and focus on his schoolwork. In short, he is the type of person who strives to make the world a better place.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Arianne Girard

Arianne Girard

A student committed to using her leadership skills to help youth in her community

Every day, Arianne Girard, a graduate at Charles-Gravel high school, deploys boundless energy and dynamism in order to turn her school into an ever-increasingly rewarding living environment for all. After being school minister for four years, this highly resourceful student is currently the prime minister of the student government, an ideal position for shaping the school environment in her image: dynamic and welcoming. Whether it’s by sitting on the board of directors of the Charles-Gravel Foundation, which supports less fortunate youth, by helping with the school’s non-violence committee or by supporting students experiencing problems by ensuring that they are included in activities organized at her school, she makes it her duty to build a more inclusive and kinder society, one gesture at a time, one engagement at a time.


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FINALISTCOMMITTED STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Magalie Thibeault

Magalie Thibeault

A student committed to drawing on all her resources to make the world a better place

The effects of Magalie Thibault’s involvement are far-reaching. As a member of the student life committee, this Secondary X student brings her own uniqueness to the science lunchtimes at XXX high school. She also adds her own personal touch to the school’s musical performances, either by hosting them or as a performer. She also works in the cafeteria, is a member of the volleyball team and volunteers at the Défi de la Relève event. Magalie is everywhere at once and the type of person who gathers others in their wake even though for her taking the spotlight is a real challenge as she’s quite shy! Be that as it may, her community engagement is exemplary. As an aspiring journalist, she writes numerous articles for the local newspaper and also lends a hand at her town’s youth centre, church and museum. Magalie has received two awards in recognition of her dedication, one from the municipality and the other from the Fjord-du-Saguenay district. Despite her young age, she has already left a lasting mark on her community.


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FINALISTPERSEVERING STUDENT AVENIR
Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean and Côte-Nord

2017-07-12 Sarah-Ève Morin

Sarah-Ève Morin

A student committed to regaining control of her life and fulfilling her dream of owning a dairy farm

Elementary school was a peaceful period in Sarah-Ève Morin’s life but she started high school amidst utter chaos. As the victim of bullying, she suffered from physical and verbal abuse and her third year was all the more difficult because her mother was battling cancer and her father was suffering from cardiovascular problems. And to top it all off, she became involved in a toxic relationship. As a consequence, her grades plummeted. But rather than giving in to despair, this student at Fréchette high school decided to instead focus on her dream of owning a dairy farm. And to fulfil this dream, she created the winning conditions: psychological support to help heal the emotional wounds, remedial classes to get the academic grades she was capable of achieving and extracurricular activities to rebuild her self-esteem, like helping to organize a fashion show and the school prom. Sarah-Ève is without doubt the type of person who always manages to get back on their feet.


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