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Boyer completed her first two academic years in Lakeland’s university transfer program and then applied to transfer into the ATEP for her third and fourth year. She’ll complete all four years at Lakeland’s Lloydminster campus and earn a bachelor of education (elementary) from UAlberta.
Boyer, who is Métis, says she felt out of place taking UAlberta’s general bachelor of education (elementary) education stream right out of high school. When she learned that Lakeland was partnering with ATEP to offer this degree program in her community, she says transferring her credits into a specialized program appealed to her.
“I was interested in learning about how to promote success for Indigenous learners. I noticed in high school that some of my Indigenous peers struggled and fell through the cracks. At the same time, I saw that with different support systems and programs and with people educated to help them, they were able to find success. I've always wanted to be a teacher, but I think that I was intrigued to take ATEP because of the Indigenous-learner focus that it provides,” Boyer explains.
Since the cohort program is specialized, class sizes hover at 25 at Lakeland. Boyer says it’s empowering for students to learn in such an intimate setting because students get to know each other and their instructors. She says she’s more likely to ask for help and become a more successful learner.
“I hope that I can be a teacher that serves all students, including Indigenous learners, to help them achieve success and reach their goals,” she says.
Submitted photo: Leah Boyer, who won the Leadership Award at the 2016 SaskTel Aboriginal Youth Awards.