Spotlight on our Graduates: Congrats Class of 2017!

Class of 2017 | Graduation Stats | St. Margaret's School, VictoriaThis year's 44 graduates are an impressive group of young women. But before we launch into this collection of graduate stats including university destinations, major scholarships, and areas of study, first: a word of thanks to our graduate families:

Thank you for the opportunity to lead your daughters in learning. Your family made an important choice to invest in your daughter’s future by offering her an all-girls education at SMS. Now she’s poised to take on her greatest challenges yet—at university and beyond.

And if there’s one thing we know for certain, it’s that she’s ready for it.


44 graduates

125 offers of admission (77% of grads accepted to their first choice insitution)

$312k in scholarships and awards (CAD, including 4-year renewable awards)

One hundred percent of SMS graduates receive offers of admission from post-secondary institutions of their choice. This year, of our 44 grads, two students choose to take a Gap Year for travel or work. Of the 39 scholarships offered to our graduates in 2017, the largest awards were from Fairleigh Dickinson University (NJ, USA) valued at $60,000 USD, and Principia College (IL, USA) valued at $54,000 USD.


  1. Business & Management (7)
  2. Sciences, Biology & Chemistry (5)
  3. Social Science (5)
  4. Psychology (4)
  5. Computer Science / IT (3)
  6. Economics (3)
  7. Liberal Arts / Arts & Sciences (3)


We are proud of all our graduates. But the following students stand out has having been awarded the largest entrance scholarships from their universities of choice, acceptance into exclusive post-secondary programs of study, and for their achievements while at SMS.

(these profiles are adapted from the address at closing ceremonies)

OLIVIA BURBEE has attended for three years as an SMS Centennial Scholar. She shocked everyone this year by enrolling in not one, but TWO Physical Ed classes, and hardly complained when they fell on the same day (sports are not Olivia’s first love). Her favourite part of Grade 12 was sprinting to Tim Horton’s between classes. Oh, and looking after the Human Geography plants, and Bard on the Beach, and summiting Mt. Albert Edward, and trying to find her own blazer in the red woolen mound in the grad lounge. Her work with the other passionate members of Model UN has helped Olivia decide that International Human Rights Law is her university program. She has been accepted to Principia College in Illinois with a $54,000 merit scholarship. Olivia would like to thank her parents, siblings, fellow grads, and all her teachers for giving her a strong foundation from which to root and grow. Congratulations on earning Honour Roll, Achievement Pin first year.

JESSICA HEWITT sang her first solo here at SMS, and enjoyed her years performing with the choir and taking voice lessons. Her artistic talents extend to sculpting imaginative, one-of-a-kind clay figures. Jessica loved exploring the wonders of the underwater world while doing scuba at Outweek. She will always remember the Quebec trip, working backstage for the plays, and Ms. Munro’s endless patience. Other treasured memories are Mrs. Erickson’s friendly chats before Math class, Mr. Holland’s rollicking social studies classes and Ms. Batson’s Chemistry and Biology classes. Jessica is grateful to her parents and all her teachers for their support, especially in this final year. She has received Honour Roll and the book prize for Concert Choir 12. She will attend Trinity Western University in Vancouver to study Chemistry. She was offered a 4-year $16,000 scholarship. Best of luck, Jess.

CHRISTINA MA wants to be a teacher so she started by being a peer tutor for a couple years. This year she was a teaching assistant with Mrs. Macris in grade 9 Math. She also established a voluntary Mandarin class in the Foundation Years, so she’s well on her way. She is grateful to Ms. Emmerson, Mr. Trapp, Ms. Ives and of course, Mrs. Macris, for their help. Christina loved residence life, being cared for by her roommate Caroline and the loving housemoms. The Chile exchange trip was a definite highlight. She volunteered for many school events, did backstage managing for drama productions, and was heavily involved in the international dinners. Christina enjoyed being an Orientation assistant, particularly the pay cheque part! She was offered a total of $17,500 in scholarships, but ultimately has decided to study Social Sciences at the University of Toronto, St. George campus, where she also plans to study Math and continue on to do her teaching degree. Christina is awarded Honour Roll and the Wheeler Stagecraft Trophy Congratulations, Christina.

RICA RABANG, our Deputy Head Girl, has many thank yous to express. First and foremost, she thanks her parents for their endless and generous support. It was hard to be away from home, but they provided many opportunities for her even from far away. She says thank you to her late brother, Patrick, for being her inspiration – and she was certainly inspired as an avid athlete, and as an active volunteer in many events and organizations. Thank you to friends for being her laughing cure. She is grateful for the opportunity to do a multidisciplinary paper because it was so easy to research and write about something she loved. Thank you to Ms. Ziebart for helping her find her passion to change the world - her acceptance to the prestigious United Nations Summer Youth Assembly in New York is a testament to this. Finally, she thanks Mr. Mutch for helping her discover and develop her passion in computers, film, and technology. That’s where her future lies. She will attend Fairleigh Dickinson University where she was offered a 4-year scholarship of $85,000, to study Computer Science. Today Rica is awarded Honour Roll, Program of Distinction in Media and Communications, Book Prizes for PE12, AP Computer Science Principles12 and Spanish12. She . Congratulations, Rica.


CAROLINE XU, is wearing purple in her heart today in honour of being Turgot House Captain this past year. She loved being a Student Ambassador and Residence Mentor, as well as her volunteer work at the SPCA and work experience with the Music and Memory program. She did not love all of the challenges of the great outdoors at Outweek, but the Art in the Park commemorative mural-painting was great. She will miss the other 12 members of her Green Dragon Tribe, and wonders how Christina is going to survive without “Nanny Caroline.” She is grateful to all of her housemoms, teachers, and especially her parents. Caroline has earned Honour Roll, and accepted a $10,000 scholarship to attend University of British Columbia where she will study Psychology. Congratulations!

POLLY YE would like Mr. Duimering to know that she didn’t actually enjoy “playing around” with complicated Calculus theories, but she’ll report back after first year of university! Polly appreciated the Japan exchange trip and being able to communicate effectively without words. Her work experience in the Finance Office was enjoyable and educational. She has a soft spot for sea otters after meeting them while kayaking. She is sorry to everyone in French House for the ridiculous amount of noise she and Crystal made late at night. Polly wishes to thank her friends and family for their love and honesty, and her teachers for the academic and life lessons. Polly was offered $10,000 to attend the Sauder School of Business at University of British Columbia. Congratulations on that, and on achieving Honour Roll Standing.

SHIRLEY ZHANG’s favourite events were the Chinese International Dinners. Second best was Japanese class and the exchange trip to Japan. She continued with her piano and violin lessons here at SMS, performing at the Benefit Concert, and even playing in the Rock Band. She also played badminton, basketball, and golf over the years. Shirley has the dubious honour of being the student who applied to the most universities, and as a result had the hardest time deciding which offer to accept! She decided on the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia where she was offered a scholarship worth $10,000, and will prepare for a career in Business and Electronic Management. Shirley has also been awarded Honour Roll. Congratulations.

SARAH ELLMANN, our 2017 Head Girl, has had seven very active years at SMS. She played soccer every year, and tried other sports, earning silver and gold athletic pins. She was a member of many clubs and committees, and embraced every leadership opportunity that she could, including positions on Student Council for the past three years. She performed in four school plays, played saxophone in the school band, and still found time to spend about half of her life in residence with Yvette. Sarah wishes to thank her parents, her sister, and three special mentors: Ms Holmwood, Ms Ziebart and Mrs. Erickson, who always took time to hear her rants and discuss the problems of the world. Ms Habuchi was the best homeroom teacher and dumpling-making partner. Sarah’s awards today are: Honour Roll, Program of Distinction in Leadership, SMS Passport to Lifelong Learning, and Book prizes for Leadership 12 and AP Human Geogaphy 12. Sarah has been accepted to the Smith Business School at Queen’s University with a $2,000 entrance scholarship. Congratulations, and best of luck with your dream of starting a fair-trade, eco-friendly, collaborative lifestyle brand.

NANCY LIN wishes to thank the staff of Alexis Hall for feeding the boarders day after day, and especially for the memorable international dinners. Nancy credits her improvement in English to Mrs. Da Silva in grade 10 for her encouragement, for Mrs. Livingston in English 12 and her roommate, Lucia, for helping her with grammar and conversation skills. Getting to know Venus, and spending English-speaking time with her outside of school was also helpful. Nancy volunteered at a lot of school events, and participated in Green Club. She is also one of the energetic cheerleaders we enjoyed watching perform among the SMS Cheer Squad. Nancy loved Art in the Park at Outweek, especially making dream catchers with branches and flowers. Music is in Nancy’s soul, so it is fitting that she has earned the Kowalchuk Senior Choir Trophy. She sings in our choirs and plays piano in the Jazz Band, in addition to playing the violin and flute. She has earned Honour Roll. She will study Music at the University of Victoria. She would love to be a composer one day. Congratulations, Nancy.

ARIELLE POON has great memories of homeroom competitions because Ms. Habuchi always wins! Some of that competitiveness must have rubbed off because Arielle was committed to making the Green Club a force in the school by modeling and encouraging responsible recycling all year, and improving the prestige and profile of the Green Club by leading the committee to host a game at the Hallowe’en Carnival. Arielle enjoyed a season playing Field Hockey, and was on several committees over the years. She will miss her classmates and friends, her teachers, and the Green Club Crew. Arielle is awarded Honour Roll, The SMS Passport to Learning, and the book prize for Literature 12. Arielle was accepted for the highly selective Sciences Po and Faculty of Arts double degree program at University of British Columbia, where students spend 2 years at UBC and 2 years at a French university, earning a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Social Science. Congratulations, Arielle.

KANA YAMAMOTO stands out, not only because she is the only Japanese graduate this year, but because she is one of our star athletes. She has played basketball, badminton, volleyball and soccer and been on the track and field team as well as the cross-country team. Ms. Stannard says Kana is a true basketball junkie! She is presented with the Bette Marshall Sportsmanship Trophy. She was a keen volunteer in many activities, was valued as a tutor for Japanese 12, and was an enthusiastic house captain for Christian House. She enjoyed the Europe trip, especially the cruising part. Outweeks are remembered as cold and wet. Life in French House is remembered warmly as bonding experiences. Kana would like to thank her family for their constant and unwavering support from Japan. She will return to Japan to apply to university there and begin her studies in Genetic Engineering in 2018. Congratulations on achieving Honour Roll standing, Kana.


You will find our graduates all over the world.

Canada 80% 33
USA 10% 4
UK 8% 2
New Zealand 1% 1
Switzerland 1% 1
Japan n/a* 1

*Schools in Japan do not offer acceptances until the fall.

The 50 prestigious institutions who accepted our students in 2017 include:

  • Bishop’s University
  • Boston University
  • Carleton University
  • Fairleigh Dickinson University
  • King’s College London
  • Lasalle College
  • Le Roche International School of Management
  • McGill University
  • McMaster University
  • Nottingham University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Principia College Illinois
  • Queen’s University
  • Ryerson Polytechnic University
  • San Diego State University
  • San Francisco State University
  • San Jose State University
  • Simon Fraser University
  • Trent University
  • Trinity Western University
  • University College London
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Aukland
  • University of Bristol
  • University of British Columbia
  • University of California
  • University of East Anglia
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Guelph
  • University of Hawaii
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Surrey
  • University of Toronto
  • University of Victoria
  • University of Waterloo
  • University of Western Ontario
  • York University