What is your name and when did you attend Centennial?
My name is Amanda Smith. Halfway through grade 8 I transitioned to Centennial high school and stayed until I graduated Centennial College.[/row]
How would you describe your experience at Centennial Academy and what are the most important things you learned from studying at Centennial?
My experience was very positive at CA. I came from many different schools before I found a place where I felt understood, cared for and accepted for who I was.
My learning style was understood by ALL teachers at Centennial and NONE at my previous schools. I loved every single one of my teachers and I felt very comfortable in and out of class.
At previous schools I felt like I was always getting into trouble, which made me think I wasn’t a good student. Forgetting a book in my locker at other schools meant that as a student I was disorganized, forgetful, and even careless. At centennial however it just meant I forgot my book, so they let me get my book.
Centennial turned my “mistakes” into learning experiences that I was able to carry on in my life until NOW. Centennial recognized my potential. Once I was looked at as a successful student with potential, I was motivated to become one. I believe where I am today is a direct result of that.
How did Centennial help you transition from High School to College?
Before coming to Centennial I would drag on my work and spend countless hours wasted because I didn’t understand, and I had no support. In high school at CA, the last class everyday was reserved for doing homework. Teachers were available during this period to answer questions and students got together in groups to solve difficult problems. It was during this time that Centennial taught me how to be productive rather than procrastinate. In Cegep, no one had to tell me to get my work done before 5pm because I had developed a strong work ethic thanks to my time at Centennial.
What are you doing now? What activities are you involved in?
I am a full time student at Concordia University where I am majoring in Applied Human Sciences.
I run my own business “AK” (Amanda’s Kitchen)
I am a coach specializing in healthy eating and lifestyle / weight loss/ eating disorder recovery, an influencer, a content creator, and the food photographer behind Amanda’s Kitchen.
Amanda’s Kitchen is an Online Health Coaching service. On this platform, I assist my clients with creating healthy nutrition and lifestyle patterns through specialized meal plans and guided one-on-one counselling. I help people learn to listen to their bodies, stop obsessing over food, lose weight, have a positive relationship with food and feel better overall.
I really do believe that I was put on earth to help people, most importantly in the field of diet and nutrition. I have always loved to take care of people and I KNOW it is my duty to pursue that in this field.
Hobbies include: piano, weight lifting, drawing, community service, blogging.
If you could give FUTURE High School students one tip or piece of advice, what would it be?
At the beginning of high school, I made the mistake, like the average teenager does, of trying hard to fit in with others. I found myself following my peers even though they were different from me. They lowered my self esteem considerably, until I took a stand and separated myself from them. Learning to ‘do my own thing’ was hard at first, but it made me strong. I ended up meeting my best friend (to this day), Brandon, who I never would have met if I continued down that path. Though I appreciate my friends now more than ever, I can now say that I am confident enough to be independent and do things on my own.
Be confident in who you are and don’t hide it to fit in. You will get no further in life by following others, but instead by being yourself. Hang around the right people. You become similar to the people who surround you daily so make sure those people are giving off positive vibes. If your “group” doesn’t make you feel good about yourself, it’s never too late to reach out and make new friends. Get to know people and be friendly; you don’t know what other people are going through. A simple hello and a smile can brighten someone’s day. There’s likely someone alongside you going through the exact same thing!