2016 Scholar Profile: Drake Hall
Drake Hall is the 2016 Andrew Rok Foundation Scholar. “It is a great honour to be selected as the 2016 scholarship recipient. I am very thankful for the financial support and mentorship offered by the Andrew Rok Foundation.” Drake plans to study computer science at the University of Waterloo with a possible minor in economics.
From a young age, Drake has been driven by an insatiable curiosity and love of learning. With a teacher and a school board trustee for grandparents, education has always been very important. Drake has consistently excelled in his studies, and he firmly believes that success is defined by the amount of work you put in. Much like Andrew Rok, Drake believes that dedication and strong work ethic can enable him to overcome any challenge and accomplish any task.
In high school, Drake has been very involved in the extracurricular side of his education. He is an active member of the Senior Band, Drumline, and the Jazz Band; as well, he holds the positions of Vice President of Band Executive, Captain of the Green Team, and Captain of the Chess Team. In 2015/16, Drake led a key effort in bringing his school to a Gold Level EcoSchool’s certification.
Drake’s love of learning is evident in his various side projects. In his spare time, he can be found working through online courses in computer science as well as working on coding projects. Currently, he plans to delve into Python and MySQL. During spare periods at school, Drake often lends his time to tutor his peers. Drake says, “Helping my classmates is a very rewarding experience. I take joy not only from learning, but also from sharing my knowledge and skills with others.”
After university, Drake would like to work in Canada to develop technology and software for educational usage. He sees great potential for the application of technology such as virtual reality headsets in the classroom. To Drake, technology has the capacity to compliment and enrich the educational opportunities provided to students.
Later in life, Drake would like to make the jump to politics. Using his experience working in the technology industry, he wishes to transform Ontario into a Canadian “Silicon Valley.” Drake likens the current tech opportunities to when President Kennedy stated the US would put a man on the moon. A generation grew up inspired to become scientists and engineers, propelling the United States to great levels of innovation. Drake firmly believes the same is possible with artificial intelligence, and other technologies in Ontario.
Drake would also like to see the education system updated to reflect modern realities. As Andrew Rok believed, we all have a duty to improve and evolve. Drake strongly believes financial literacy and basic computer competency should be mandatory skills taught in high school. He would even like to explore the idea of teaching younger students the fundamentals of programming. Regardless of where his life takes him, Drake will work as hard as possible to enrich the education system to help transform Ontario into a technological powerhouse.