The first students to benefit from the Flight 491 Legacy Fund received scholarships and bursaries at a ceremony at the D. F Cook Recital Hall on Memorial Universitys St. Johns campus on Friday, Nov. 5.
Twenty-eight students of Memorial University, the Marine Institute and College of the North Atlantic received awards, some of which were presented by those affected by the crash of helicopter Flight 491 on March 12, 2009.
The Flight 491 Legacy Fund committee was established by industry partners, the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil and Gas Industries Association (NOIA), the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) and the St. Johns Oilfield Technical Society (OTS), to honour the memory of the people of Flight 491.
Some family members and survivor Robert Decker were on hand to present the scholarships to students. They were joined by Dr. Gary Kachanoski, president and vice-chancellor of Memorial; Brian Henley, chair of the Legacy Fund committee; provincial Education Minister Dr. Darin King; Dr. Peter Fisher, head, Academic and Student Affairs, Marine Institute; and College President Bruce Hollett.
Mr. Henley addressed the families, saying people in the offshore industry continue to remember.
While no action taken can erase the pain and loss that the families are experiencing, we believe that this meaningful and long lasting Legacy Fund will provide honour and respect to the people of Flight 491, he said. We are hopeful that it will be a way for young people in these educational institutions to remember and learn about the events of March 12, 2009.
This is the spirit of the legacy fund to make a positive difference in the lives of young people for years to come, said Dr. Kachanoski. I hope that in knowing this, there is some measure of comfort to the families and friends.
In his remarks, Dr. Fisher said the tragedy of Flight 491 was felt deeply at the Marine Institute, where most of the passengers trained at the MIs Offshore Safety and Survival Centre.
The establishment of this Legacy Fund, which will provide scholarships and bursaries for students on an ongoing basis, will ensure that something very positive is derived from the tragedy.
The college is honoured to be a part of this significant initiative, said Bruce Hollett. Scholarships make a very positive impact on the lives of our students and what better way to honour the crew members and passengers of Flight 491 than to support future industry professionals as they work towards their goals. I want to thank everyone involved in making these scholarships and bursaries a reality.
Mr. Henley said the Flight 491 Legacy Fund has already received donations in excess of $1.4 million with the balance to reach the stated goal of $1.5 million already committed.
As a result of these fundraising efforts, the committee presented eight awards to students of Memorial University in the amount of $2,100 each; eight awards for students at the Marine Institute of $2,100; and 12 awards for students of the College of the North Atlantic in the amount of $1,400 each.
Scholarship and bursary recipients
Memorial University Scholarship Students
Rhiannon Tracey, 1st year of study Faculty of Science, St. John's, NL
Michael Grudich, 2nd year of study Faculty of Science , Corner Brook, NL
Lisa Saunders, 3rd year of study Faculty of Science, Mount Pearl, NL
Mark Penney, 4th year of study Faculty of Science, Paradise, NL
Memorial University Bursary Students
Karen Yang, 1st year of study, Faculty of Science, St. Johns, NL
Stephen Collins, 2nd year of study, Grenfell College, Faculty of Arts, Fox Harbour, NL
Brittany Jensen, 3rd year of study, Faculty of Science, St. Stephen, NB
Chantille Haynes (Bonnier), formerly Faculty of Science, currently 1st year Fast Track Nursing Student, Conception Bay South, NL
Marine Institute Scholarship Students
Andrew Peddle, 4th year of study - Ocean Instrumentation, Bristols Hope, NL
Alexander Mathews, 3rd year of study - Nautical Science, Victoria, BC
Evan Rice, 2nd year of study, Remotely Operated Vehicles, St. Johns, NL
Pamela Chandler, 1st year of study - Marine Environmental Technology, Enfield, NS
Marine Institute Bursary Students
Obadah Shadid, 4th year of study - Ocean Instrumentation, Kanata, ON
Jonathan Day, 3rd year of study - Marine Environmental Technology, Rockley, NS
Erik Van Der Meulen, 2nd year of study - Remotely Operated Vehicles, St. Johns, NL
Cody Fougere, 1st year of study - Marine Engineering Technology, Petit-de-Grat, Isle Madam, N.S.
College of the North Atlantic Scholarship Students
Candace Dooley, Clarenville Campus, Engineering Program, hometown Clarenville, NL
Brian McCarthy, Construction/Industrial Electrician Program, Carbonear Campus, hometown Carbonear, NL
Cody Broccolo, Industrial Trades Plumber Program, Bonavista Campus, hometown Bonavista, NL
Travis Meaney, Industrial Trades Plumber Program, Bonavista Campus, hometown Bonavista, NL
Amanda Hulan, Bay St. George Campus, Business Administration Program, hometown Bay St. George, NL
College of the North Atlantic Bursary Students
Brittany Adams, Grand Falls Windsor Campus, Comprehensive Arts & Science College Transfer Program hometown, Grand Falls-Windsor, NL
Savannah Curnew, Bay St. George Campus, Comprehensive Arts & Science College Transition Student hometown, Bay St. George, NL
Kaitlyn Young, Corner Brook Campus, Forest Resources Technician Program, hometown Corner Brook, NL
Jason Orr, College of the North Atlantic, Bonavista campus, Construction/Industrial Electrical Program, hometown, Bonavista, NL
Nicole Gibson, College of the North Atlantic, Carbonear campus, Comprehensive Arts & Science College Transfer Program, hometown, Carbonear, NL
Craig Stringer, College of the North Atlantic, Bonavista campus, Construction/Industrial/Electrical Program, hometown, Bonavista, NL
Tammy Sheppard, College of the North Atlantic, Happy Valley-Goose Bay campus, Comprehensive Arts & Science College Transfer Program, hometown, Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador.