Stories of Caledon

Humberview Graduate Luca Iacovelli Receives $120,000 Schulich Leader Scholarship

Luca at his graduation receiving his diploma from Stan Cameron
Written by Patti Foley

(Photo above) Luca Iacovelli at his graduation from Humberview Secondary School receiving his diploma from Peel Public School Board Trustee for Caledon, Stan Cameron. Photo credit: Andi Solo – https://andisolo.fun/

Excitement and pride are brimming over in the Iacovelli household right now! And rightly so. Mike and Alison’s eldest son Luca just received word that he is the recipient of a Schulich Leader Scholarship valued at $120,000.

Being awarded with a Schulich Leader scholarship is no small feat. In fact, quite the opposite. Reputed to be Canada’s most coveted undergraduate Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) scholarships, only 100 are awarded in the country each year spread across 20 partner universities.

Every high school in Canada can nominate one graduating student each year to apply for the scholarship. For Bolton’s Humberview High School that choice this year was Luca.

At the start of the school year when initially looking at the university programs and recognizing that the financial aspect is a large one Luca had done his research to see what solutions, like scholarships, could be available. That is when he learned about the Schulich scholarships.

Luca applied for a general scholarship at McMaster University, where he will be attending, as well as an engineering-student specific one. His participation in the Alpha Dogs, Humberview’s FIRST Robotics team, was key to his success with the $15,000 engineering scholarship he received. In addition, he received a $3,000 entrance scholarship, made possible by his 96% average.

Meanwhile Luca also approached his Guidance Counsellor Shannon McCauley and let her know he was interested in being Humberview’s Schulich Leader nominee.

He detailed his role as operator and programming lead with FIRST Robotics. He outlined how he had put his exceptional public speaking skills to work during sponsorship drives – with organizations like Husky, Canadian Tire and the Bolton and Palgrave Rotary Clubs – and helped the Alpha Dogs raise $75,000 across the three years he was with the team.

On the employment front Luca had a summer internship with Rugby Ontario (grade 10), fitting for an avid rugby player with the Caledon Cavaliers. Then he interned at Rotogran International (grade 11), all while holding down a part-time summer job for the past three summers at the Caledon Centre for Recreation and Wellness as a general program instructor.

Luca’s commitment to community undoubtedly played a big part as well. The teenager had amassed a remarkable 400+ hours since 2022 in a variety of roles – Lead Coach, Referee, Club Educator – with the Caledon Cavaliers Rugby Club.

Once nominated for the Schulich Leader scholarship Luca had to complete his application by February 1st. That included reference letters, an essay, and more. Then he had to choose the universities he was interested in and Schulich, in turn, sent the application on to those universities for review.

“I tried very hard to closely follow along on their Instagram to see what was happening” says Luca. “About a month ago McMaster posted that it had sent out their offers, so my family and I concluded it was over. Then a couple of days ago I had a big surprise when I was sitting in McDonalds having lunch and I got an email saying I was recipient of a $120,000 scholarship.”

Thinking back on everything that has happened Luca said “I would really like to say that I recognize that this wouldn’t have been possible without the support and guidance I received from everyone around me – my family and my mentors and teachers at Humberview. As proud as I am of my achievement, I couldn’t have done it without this help.”

Right now, Luca says he is very excited about the opportunity and ready to jump into this next step. We at JSC are excited for him and are certain this brilliant and dedicated young man from Bolton has a bright and remarkable future ahead.

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About the author

Patti Foley

Having spent 25 years in Bolton, Patti remains an advocate for Caledon. As a former Regional Councillor and a long-time community volunteer she is passionate about communicating information about its issues, news, events, people, non-profits and businesses.

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