Tara VanCauwenberghe

Tara Vancauwenberghe

What education have you taken?

I graduated from Vincent Massey High School in Brandon, Manitoba in 2014.  I completed my Bachelor of Physical Education Degree from Brandon University in 2017.  I am now enrolled in the Bachelor of Education After Degree program, focusing on Early Years Education, and will graduate in May of 2019.

What accomplishments (awards, scholarships, volunteer work, organizations, memberships etc.) are you proud of?

I have always taken pride in my academics and always strive to do my best.  I am proud to have received numerous scholarships during my time at Brandon University, including the Board of Governors Entrance Scholarship, Peter Dobson Memorial Scholarship, Brandon University Faculty Association Scholarship, Percy Lanham Bursary, as well as the General Proficiency Scholarship in BPES. I was also very proud to receive the Brandon University Gold Medal in the Bachelor of Physical Education Studies as well as the Lieutenant Governors Gold Medal at the Convocation ceremony in May, 2017. I have been placed on the Dean’s Honour List for 2014 thru 2017 and was named a lifetime member of the Golden Key International Honour Society. Along with my academic success, I am also proud to be involved in my community as a coach with both local basketball and hockey programs.  I am also a member of BUPEC (Brandon University Physical Education Club), as well as ESS (Education Student Society), being recently named Vice President for the 2018-2019 school year.

Tell us about yourself/your background/your history.

I lived in Virden, Manitoba until the age of 4, when my family re-located to Brandon where we currently reside today. I am an only child, and I am very close with my family. I played a lot of sports growing up, including hockey, basketball, soccer and dance and my family was always supporting me every step of the way. I continue to enjoy sports today and play volleyball, basketball, hockey and baseball on recreation teams. I work as part of the Game Day Staff for the Brandon Wheat Kings during the winter months.  In the summer, I work as an instructor at Mini U and I enjoy spending time with my family and friends at our cabin at Clear Lake.

How did you become interested in your field of study?

For as long as I can remember, it has been my dream to become an elementary school teacher. I definitely have a passion for my chosen career and I hope that I can inspire young children and make a difference in their lives. I do not consider working with children to be a job, but rather a privilege. I believe that one of the greatest accomplishments that we can have in life is to have an impact on the lives of others. After spending time volunteering in the classroom and also working at summer day camps, including Mini-U, I am even more excited to pursue my chosen career. I hope that through working with children I will be able to make a meaningful and long-lasting impact on their lives.

What is your philosophy in life?

My philosophy in life is to always try my best each day, to work hard, to be positive, to be a role model to others and to treat others the way that I would like to be treated.

Some quotes that are very important to me include:

“Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.” – Dennis P. Kimbro

“Be gentle with yourself.  You’re doing the best you can.” – Unknown

“Never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something, not even yourself.” – Gloria Mallette

Where do you see yourself in the future?

I am looking forward to graduating as an Early Years Teacher in the spring of 2019.  I am excited to take on this next step in my life. I look forward to being a teacher that makes a large impact in every single one of my students’ lives. I want to make strong connections with all of my students and use compassion and dedication to let each and every one of them know that they are valued and appreciated. Combining my love for children with my love for learning will be very rewarding and I look forward to seeing my passion and my career come together.

Nominator’s comments:

I have known Tara for over 5 years. Since coming to BU, she has been a strong and engaged student. Tara has been a student of mine for a few different courses and currently works for our grassroots basketball program, called Bobcat Jr Basketball Academy. In my opinion, her accountability, dedication and professionalism puts her in a class of her own. In addition to her strong academic achievements and basketball coaching, she also is a Mini-U staff member, Sunday school teacher and events coordinator for the Brandon Wheatkings Junior Hockey team. Tara is an exceptional female student and a strong contributor in our community.