Twin sisters from the Lac Brochet Junior Canadian Rangers Patrol each received $1,000 bursaries to assist their post-secondary studies, which they began at the University College of the North (UCN) Thompson campus this month.
Taylor and Skylar Veuillot, who turned 18 Sept. 24, are the 2020 recipients of the Canada Company Cadets and Junior Canadian Rangers Bursary for the 4th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group (CPRG), which is presented to young men and women who show leadership, teamwork, proactivity, engagement in learning and a positive attitude while being an example for their peers.
“A lot of the community members are not going to understand the magnitude of this, to have two sisters, twin sisters, get this recognition from the Department of National Defence, from the same community, the same family – it’s probably not going to happen again for a long time,” said Master Cpl. Pierre Bernier, Lac Brochet JCR Patrol leader, calling the Veuillot sisters “impeccable role models.”
The bursaries were presented to the sisters in a virtual ceremony Sept. 19.
Taylor and Skylar both joined the Junior Canadian Rangers at age 12, though they had started going to meetings when they were only 11.
“I wanted to go because most of my friends and family and siblings were in the program,” said Skylar. “They were telling me how fun it was. It taught me to get out of my comfort zone and talk to people I just met – because as a kid, I was really shy. It taught me a lot of skills.”
“It helped me get out of my comfort zone and be myself around people, to not be ashamed of what to do and not be ashamed of what I do, especially being First Nation from my community, and not to be ashamed of who I am and where I come from,” said Taylor. “The skills I have achieved, I will teach other JCRs and other people, skills like knot-tying, shelter-making, not to give up when you are hiking with a heavy backpack.”
The twins’ four older siblings were also Junior Canadian Rangers.
Taylor is pursuing a bachelor of arts degree with designs on working in education.
“When I finish school, I will move back home and teach the kids there, she said.
Skylar is also pursuing a bachelor of arts degree and says attending UCN is a new challenge.
“It’s good, something different, a change,” she says. “I like to try new things. We have a big family, so it’s a big change for us living on our own, but our family is there to help, so it feels good.”
Bernier says the sisters will definitely rise to any challenge in front of them.
“The sky is the limit, but even then, I think they’ll go beyond the sky,” he said. “They’re not afraid to try, they have a sense of adventure, very polite, very respectful, hard-working, very generous and helpful to others, not afraid to volunteer to help out, smart, I could go on and on. They have very magnetic personalities and they never stop. We couldn’t ask for better role models for other community members, for the youth here in the community. I’m looking forward to seeing them grow and become contributing members of society, but most importantly, excellent role models to the future "