Canadian Geographic wowed by Abbey Park Student

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Canadian Geographic wowed by Abbey Park Student
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Mashaal Effendi

Mashaal Effendi is a writer and new Torontonian, having started the new chapter of his life moving to Canada in Oakville.Mashaal has worked as a writer in film, television, theatre, advertising, communications, and even in speechwriting during his time as a Toastmaster.An avid reader, video game enthusiast, and musician ( who presently plays drums for a band called "The Downgrades"), Mashaal enjoys gathering experiences around Oakville, and is ecstatic to be on the team covering events that breathe life into the community.

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Ryan Sharpe, Abbey Park High School student, was among the few contestants that made it all the way to the finals on Monday for the Canadian Geographic Challenge in Ottawa’s Fletcher Wildlife Garden. The Grade 10 student has made it to the finals for a second time, beating students who were competing from across the country.

The Canadian Geographic Challenge encourages students in grades 7-10 to push the limits of their geographic knowledge and apply geographic thinking skills. Students from all over the region take part in the competition.

Provinces participating:

  1. Ontario
  2. Nova Scotia
  3. British Columbia
  4. Quebec
  5. New Brunswick
  6. Alberta

Students explored the natural features of Fletcher Wildlife Garden. The garden is a multifaceted urban oasis, where the competition took place.

Photo of finalists. Courtesy of Deborah Chapman of Canadian Geographical Society.


Segments of the competition included:

  • Exploring the natural features of this urban oasis, keeping a log of everything they saw.
  • Being quizzed on plant species, map reading, and conservation practices as part of their field work testing.
  • A written exam which testing geography on various subjects ranged from geology to international capitals.

Qualifiers passing this round went on to meet world-renowned cave diver Jill Heinerth. She is the Royal Canadian Geographical Society’s (R.C.G.S.) inaugural Explorer-in-Residence at Canada’s Centre for Geography and Exploration, the new home of The R.C.G.S.

While there was only one winner, each student will receive a berth on One Ocean Expeditions’ 10-day Fins and Fiddles Adventure Cruise, a Destination Canada, Canadian Signature Experience.

The voyage explores Canada’s East Coast. This adventure includes a ride to Sable Island and its famed wild horses. The top three contestants receive prizes of $5,000, $3,000 and $2,000 respectively.

Canadian Geographic Education fosters the geographic skills necessary to maintain Canada’s reputation as a geography powerhouse. This sector contributes billions to Canada’s economy through geomatics and geospatial technology. To follow more on the organization’s activities and see the results of the winner, have a look at the company’s Facebook page.

Photo courtesy of Canadian Geographic Society.

For more articles in Oakville News by Mashaal Effendi. You can also follow Mashaal on Twitter.


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