Meet Jaden K ’19: a versatile athlete who balances sports, Cadets, academics and his personal interests in digital media. Arriving to Ridley after years in China, Jaden is accustomed to the global community that exists within the Marriott Gates. With a vested interest in pursuing leadership opportunities, read more about how Jaden plans to put his Prefect duties in action.
Why did you choose Ridley?
Although coming to Ridley wasn’t my choice, I found myself attracted to the school’s balance of history and tradition to the modern values that are taught and instilled, that create flourishing students. In addition, the campus and facilities are beautiful and the community is genuine and caring. I remember when I first visited I thought to myself how proud I would feel to be a Ridley Tiger.
Did you feel prepared coming to Ridley?
Despite the fact that Ridley was only my second school and I had never had to move, I felt confident and prepared coming to Ridley. While leaving friends was hard, I wasn’t nervous making new connections and memories. I trusted the community and embraced the culture which has led to amazing new friends and memorable experiences.
Who is your favourite faculty member and why?
My favourite members of faculty are the grounds crew staff. They work hard every day to keep the campus clean and beautiful, and during my walk to school in the morning they always wave and wish me a good day. They are kind and hardworking, which personifies what it means to be a Ridley Tiger.
What has been your greatest challenge thus far at Ridley?
A challenge that I faced at Ridley was the transition between Lower School and Upper School. While my last year in Lower School was successful, I found my first year of high school challenging. The year required perseverance and grit, however, with the help of faculty, I found a rhythm and recognized my goals which led to successful transitions into further grades.
What has been your greatest accomplishment thus far at Ridley?
Although being named a Prefect was a proud achievement, my greatest accomplishment at Ridley would be winning CISAA gold with First Team Boys rugby. We were a tight-knit team and had bonded over many hours of training and playing. I consider this my greatest accomplishment because it represented a season of hard work and the relationships that can be made through sports at Ridley.
What has been your favorite Ridley experience?
My fondest Ridley experience has been camp during the first weeks of school. Camp is an opportunity to meet new students and make friends in an environment out of everyone’s comfort zone. I love the competitive nature of the activities and I believe camp introduces a Canadian experience to our international students.
What is your favourite part of Ridley life?
My favourite parts of Ridley life are the House activities and competitions. Whether we are competing in Sports Day at the end of the year or just a casual soccer match, I love having a community of students who are energetic and passionate about activities throughout the House. In addition to the competitions, I enjoy seeing the pride each student has for their respective Houses.
What part of being a Prefect are you most excited for?
As a Prefect, I’m very excited for the chance to increase leadership opportunities for students in junior grades as well as the Lower School. I’m passionate about creating experiences for students to expand their leadership skills and confidence as a leader. I’m also excited to have a presence in both the Lower School and Upper School, I look forward to going to Lower School chapel and lunch in my spare time.
How has Ridley prepared you for the future?
Ridley has prepared me for the future by creating a culture of global citizens and lifelong learners. The diversity in cultures at Ridley have prepared me for a global workplace. Collaborating and learning with students from around to world have a profound in my understanding of other places and people. I also feel as though a Ridley education establishes critical thinking skills and curiosity which leads to deeper learning.
What are your plans after graduation?
My plans for after graduation are to attend university for a degree that specializes in creative direction and marketing. The schools that I’m interested in include University of Toronto, Queens and SCAD. While at university I hope to get some sort of job or internship for experience.
What advice would you give prospective students about Ridley?
Advice that I have for prospective students is to not underestimate or discredit the connections and relationships you make at Ridley. The Ridley community is substantial and spans across many continents and fields of work. I think students will be surprised by the effect of being a Ridley graduate in their future. Students will observe that Ridley is a school which grows and adapts with their current students, as well as the alumni.