Print Print E-mail E-mail Share Share


    Financial Assistance Information for 2015-16
    Financial Assistance/Bursary Program
    If you are reading these pages, you have already taken the first steps in the Admissions process. The decision to attend boarding school can be a daunting one, but rest assured that all of the information you’ll need to make the correct decision for you and your family now lies well within your reach. Shawnigan’s Admissions Office is made up of a group of talented and passionate people who want to assist in making your own evaluation of whether this school is the school for you.
    Shawnigan Lake School has first-class facilities, talented and caring instructors, committed coaches and a breathtaking campus. But it’s the students that make Shawnigan the special place it is.
    At Shawnigan, we are proud of our commitment to developing talented young people of character through the challenges of a well-rounded education. What does that mean? Well, it means that, sometimes, Shawnigan will be hard. As a student here, you’ll be challenged to push your personal limits, leave your comfort zone, try new things and embrace new people and cultures. And, in the end, you’ll leave Shawnigan as a better student, and as importantly, a better person.
    Welcome to Shawnigan.
    Gaynor Samuel
    Director of Admissions

    Admissions Office
    Mrs. Gaynor Samuel
    Director of Admissions
    Gaynor Samuel was brought up in a tiny coal-mining village in Wales. It was here, at the foot of the Black Mountain in Brynaman, where she learned the strong family values and traditions that make her such a natural for Shawnigan Lake School. Following her childhood dream, to become a teacher, Gaynor received a bachelor’s degree and teacher’s certificate from Cardiff University and took her first job as a biology and math teacher in North Wales in a town called Mold.

    After two years, she moved back to Cardiff and Glantaff School where she taught science for ten years. Gaynor was recognized early in her career as a leader, and was appointed Head of the Glantaff Middle School after several years of teaching.

    During this time, Gaynor married Rhodri Samuel. Rhod was working in Canada at St. Michael’s University School in Victoria, so Gaynor made the move to SMUS as Head of Girls’ Boarding. After a couple of years, Rhodri and Gaynor moved back to Wales to start a family and worked at Christ College, Brecon.

    Two years, and two children later, the Samuel family heard of an opportunity at Shawnigan Lake School. Rhodri was appointed Head of Ripley’s and Gaynor settled into her role as “House Mother” and relished the opportunity to spend time with her own growing children in the comfortable setting of Shawnigan.

    In 2006, Gaynor left teaching to become Admissions Associate. By the time she was appointed Director of Admissions in 2008, Gaynor had given over the reins of Renfrew to current Director, Debra John.

    When not at work, Gaynor, is a keen interior designer and sought after to assist with decorating the interiors of the Houses on campus.

    Mr. Rhodri Samuel
    Senior Master, External Relations and Admissions

    Mr. Kevin Cooper
    Admissions Associate, Director of Hockey
    Kevin is new to the Shawnigan community as of September 2013. A native of Barrie, Ontario, Kevin's passion for hockey started at a young age.

    Having spent his early years in Yellowknife, NWT, Kevin returned to Ontario at age 10 to play minor hockey in Mississauga. He would later attend New Hampton School, a private school in New Hampshire before being recruited to play hockey for Middlebury College in Vermont, where he completed a B.A. in Psychology.

    After graduating in 2004, Kevin spent several years playing professional hockey in the AHL, ECHL, CHL, FHL, Sweden, Finland, and Germany. While playing, he also volunteered and coached at various levels. Kevin's career in Admissions started at Brighton Academy in Maine, where he balanced several roles including Admissions Counselor,Associate Teacher, Student Advisor, Dorm Head, Director of Hockey Ops and Associate Head Hockey Coach.
    Kevin currently lives on campus with his wife Kimberley. In the spring and summer, he enjoys fishing, having spent countless hours in the river and on the ocean. After having spent so much time on the east coast, he also looks forward to the ability to play golf year round on the Island!

    Ms. Margot Allen
    Associate Director of Admissions
    Margot Allen was born and raised in the Comox Valley where her grandparents emigrated from Scotland in 1910. The youngest of four children, she spent most of her childhood running away from her brothers and spending time in the outdoors. After graduating from G.P. Vanier High School, Margot decided to dedicate her life to one of her favourite passions - the culinary arts.

    After attending Camosun College in Victoria, Margot travelled and worked for the next 20 years. Margot found herself in kitchens from Northern British Columbia to Oklahoma to Vancouver, until finally settling down in Shawnigan Lake.

    As her children grew older and went off to university, Margot joined Shawnigan Lake School as a staff member in 2007. She first worked for a short time as an Administrative Assistant in the Advancement Department, before quickly moving to her current role as the Associate Director of Admissions. In addition, she spent two years as the Assistant House Director in Groves' house where she had the pleasure of mentoring 53 new "daughters."

    In her down time Margot enjoys being in nature, gardening, reading, painting and cooking for anyone who appreciates good food.

    Ms. Shannon Peck
    Admissions and Marketing Coordinator
    As a member of the Admissions team, Shannon Peck joined Shawnigan lake School in 2009 in an administrative capacity. Shannon has worked in an Admissions/Program Coordinator role for more than 12 years in both private secondary and public post secondary positions. Prior to moving into Education, she spent eight years in the brokerage and finance industry. Shannon earned her undergraduate degree in Classical History from UBC and continues to pursue her passion for the arts. She is an avid quilter, painter, a collector of all things shiny and odd (a 'bricoleur' of sorts) and she reads and runs excessively.

    She and her poetic husband, Mark live in "Well Bred Smallholding", a small farm with their illiterate Labrador, Cedar, three near senile cats, and the occasional rogue raccoon where they also operate a micro bakery selling at local farmers markets.

    Mrs. Julia Pollock
    Admissions Associate
    Julia was born and raised in Nuernberg, Germany, where she enjoyed the endless supply of Lebkuchen and Bratwuerste.

    After finishing her High School in Nuernberg  she studied business French and English to become a translator, however, the one and only opportunity came along to become a TV news anchor and she decided to explore that option first. Every evening at 6pm Julia presented the local news and interviewed interesting people in and outside the TV studio.  She never forgets the day when she interviewed the man she would end up marrying three years later. Jame Pollock, now the Head Coach of the SLS varsity team, was successfully playing Ice Hockey in Julia's hometown and caught her interest.

    Julia holds a Master of Arts degree from the university of Munich and has a passion for languages. Besides her mother tongue German, she is fluent in English and can converse in Dutch and French. Growing up she was used to speaking Dutch to her mother, now she wants to teach her own children, Elsa and William, the joy of being bilingual, however, until now they only seem to know the word for 'candy' in German. She is hopeful that this will change.

    Julia joined the Admissions Department in January 2015 and soon was asked to move into the role of the Admissions Associate liaising with international families.

    Loving the exchange with families from all over the world, Julia also loves spending time with her own family in their cabin at Shawnigan Lake, where they enjoy waterskiing, wakeboarding and tubing.