A Cochrane teen is one of 41 high school students across the province that has been selected to sit on the Minister's Youth Council.
Fifteen-year-old Elliot Strawson is among the teens bringing diverse interests, backgrounds, and identities from across Alberta, who will provide their perspectives on topics related to education throughout the ten-month term.
The Grade 10 student at Cochrane High says they've already held a virtual meeting with Education Minister, Adriana LaGrange.
"The council is a way for the Minister of Education, Ms. LaGrange, to get feedback and opinions of youth when she makes important decisions."
Strawson says during her 15-years, she has lived in Ontario, Manitoba and now in Alberta.
"What I bring to this council is having a very diverse look on not only Alberta, but on Canada. So I have lived all throughout Canada in my life, and now we reside in Cochrane."
The teen has been passionate about leadership for several years already.
"My friend first introduced me to leadership through the student council in Manachaban, in my middle school, and from there I really fell in love with studying leadership. In Grade 8 I had the chance to be part of the mentorship program through Big Brothers and Big Sisters."
"I am currently on senior leadership in Cochrane High. When I was in Grade 9, I was selected to be on the youth council in Cochrane, and I really enjoyed that."
Even though the meetings will look different this year because of COVID-19, Strawson says she is still looking forward to learning from others and meeting all of the teens from across Alberta.
Typically, the council would meet in Edmonton for a few days, three times throughout the year, and participate in different sessions and meetings.
This year, the meetings will be done virtually.
Strawson says "I am still super excited to meet of the wonderful, 40 other kids on this council and I'm just really looking forward to it."