Being a mature student ‘wasn’t easy, but definitely worth it’ for Valedictorian Samantha Delahaye

samanthaSamantha Delahaye felt nervous when she entered Fleming College as a mature student, but is graduating as Valedictorian with peers and professors she calls friends.

“I worked extremely hard to achieve what I did while at Fleming College. Coming back to school as a ‘mature student’ certainly wasn’t easy, but definitely worth it,” said Samantha, who is graduating from the Protection, Security and Investigation program.

Samantha will deliver her Valedictorian speech at the Justice Programs convocation on Wednesday, June 7 at 10 a.m.

“I know that within the School of Law and Justice, there were a lot of contenders; and for me to be singled out and chosen from such a vast variety of students, it feels incredible,” she said. “My hope is that I am able, at the very least, to keep their attention. It would be nice if they could pick up from my speech that I really want the best in the future for all the fellow graduates. And I hope to deliver some laughs as well.”

Reflecting on her most memorable experiences in the School of Justice and Community Development, Samantha said she spontaneously waltzed with a professor to prove a theory, fell in a creek during surveillance, and had many memorable conversations with faculty.

“Fleming is an incredibly welcoming place to attend school, it holds an accepting and diverse community,” she said. “I came here two years ago as a mature student and worried that, because of the age gap, I wouldn’t mesh well. I couldn’t have been more wrong.”

One of Samantha’s favourite memories at Fleming College was her hour-long chats with faculty member Alana Hermiston, who sadly passed away last year. “She left an ever-lasting impression on hundreds of students during her time at Fleming College and she is missed tremendously,” said Samantha.

Through the Protection, Security and Investigation program, Samantha developed teamwork skills, especially in regards to communication. She also learned surveillance/intelligence, interviewing/questioning techniques, and crime scene investigation. “It made me much more aware of the environment around me, I feel as though I pay more attention to detail now,” she said.

Samantha recommends this program to others because the courses are intriguing and hands-on, the professors are wonderful, and the skills are transferable to many different opportunities.