Vimy ridge will always be a major turning point in the history of Canada. It was the battle that proved that Canada wasn’t just a part of England’s shadow but could stand up to any challenge that faced them. It was the battle that solidified Canada and was a major turning point in our self-identity. 

Few of us get a chance to see this powerful and important place that bore Canada into recognition. 

The Vimy ridge foundation fixes this by giving 20 young leaders in Canada a chance to participate in the Vimy Pilgrimage Award. to visit and learn the importance of this place and the history behind it. 

This isn’t something that everyone can easily apply for though, there are many steps and projects that must be accepted before you can be considered. 

Rosetown’s own Jan Nasibog, a grade 11 student building her leadership abilities within the school, worked hard to earn her place. 

“I thought I failed that interview because I was so nervous.” 

But little did she know that she had won out of hundreds of other students that applied. 

“The day I got accepted I was actually out sick. I had a cold.  I was on the couch with my sister, with my cat sleeping right beside me. I got that e-mail. That said congratulations on winning the 2024 Vimy Pilgrimage Award and I jumped out of my seat “ 

With that she was off for an adventure of a lifetime. 

The journey took eight days visiting important sites, museums, cemeteries and historic battlefields from the First World War.  

In a release from the Vimy Ridge Foundation they explain, “This experience will provide them with transferable skills and unique perspectives from the past, and will allow them to connect with peers, [and] fellow leaders of tomorrow” 

For Jan it was not only educational but life changing, 

“Oh, it was amazing. I think I kind of cried when I saw it the first time ever seeing it. We were actually outside of the Vimy Ridge memorial.  

We were actually inside the trenches right beforehand, so I got to hear about the history of the Vimy Ridge and how so many people, so many Canadians fought together to capture this place.” 

This has changed her plans for life. Jan is now leaning more toward international relations and growing from what she learned and experienced while in Europe.