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Penticton philanthropists supporting students for over 15 years

The latest two students are graduates of Summerland Secondary School

Two Summerland Secondary School grads are getting a leg up thanks to local philanthropists.

Wylie Rowan and Mattias Van Bergeyk are the two most recent recipients of the Thorpe and Friends Scholarship, which has gone to 76 students over the last 15 years.

Both Rowan and Van Bergeyk are in their first year of studies at Okanagan College.

“I was so excited when I found out I’d received the scholarship,” said Rowan. “Without this financial support, I would have had to leave school and find a job.”

The scholarship was created in 2006 by former MLA Rick Thorpe and his wife Yasmin John-Thorpe, along with their friends, and so far have contributed more than $160,000 in scholarships for students in need.

Rowan says he’s grateful to the Thorpes for helping him pursue his passion — Kinesiology.“I have been injured many times, and I know how difficult it can be to recover. I want to help people heal.”

The Thorpes say their ongoing commitment to helping students in need is borne out of a desire to give back to their community.

“I was raised in a humble family that always found a way to help people, and so was Yasmin. The importance of giving back was instilled in us from a young age,” said Rick Thorpe.

READ MORE: Late David Kampe bequethes $2M to Penticton scholarship foundation

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Brennan Phillips

About the Author: Brennan Phillips

Brennan was raised in the Okanagan and is thankful every day that he gets to live and work in one of the most beautiful places in Canada.
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