Student Feature: Loran Finalist

Victoria High School Student Named Loran Scholar Finalist; “I Feel Like I’ve Already Won”

Outstanding Victoria High School student, Elizabeth Tsuil-menak, is within the top 2% of this year’s 5,200+ applicants and participated in national interviews in Toronto in February.

Elizabeth Tsuil-menak (recognized as Elizabeth Rose through the Loran Scholars Foundation).

On February 23, Elizabeth Tsuil-menak and 90 other Loran Scholarship finalists flew to Toronto for the scholarship’s national interview selection process. For three days, finalists endured multiple interview panels and networked with past years’ Loran Scholars. But for Elizabeth, a seventeen-year-old Victoria High School student, the experience was more than just a series of questions.

As one of only three on Vancouver Island and the sole student within the Greater Victoria School District to be selected this year, Elizabeth is gaining familiarity with what might be to come. “There have been calls from reporters and articles posted about me. With the opportunities I’ve been given, I feel like I’ve already won. It was so great to meet other Loran scholars and fellow finalists.”

The Loran Scholarship Foundation identifies students who push boundaries, question the status quo, and look for ways to add compassion and positive change to their communities.

The application process encourages students to focus on community growth and personal struggle. One of many highlights within Elizabeth’s application speaks strongly to both these requirements.

“My family has leaned on the Victoria Women’s Transition House,” she says. “It was important for me to give back which is why I created a fundraiser that raised over $6,000 to support them with new hygiene products, clothes, and blankets. It was also important for me to educate others that these kinds of resources exist in our community, and they are making a difference for families.”

The Greater Victoria School District congratulates Elizabeth on both receiving the recognition of being named a finalist, but also for her outstanding contributions both within her school and our community.

Elizabeth can be found in her school’s theatre room leading the stage crew, at student council meetings voicing her ideas as an Indigenous student representative, supporting land acknowledgements and training score keepers during school sporting events, and volunteering her time with a number of school initiatives.

“I have ideas,” she says. “And it’s humbling when people I look up to, whether they are students or faculty, ask me for my opinion. This school has created such an inclusive environment where students like me can speak up when we know something has the potential to grow from ‘good’ to ‘better’.”

The Honour Roll student has also accumulated an impressive array of awards and achievements throughout her studies including the Kiwanis Citizenship Award and the Salmon Achievement Award two years in a row—the first to ever do so.

Elizabeth plans on attending Camosun and the University of Victoria and has her eye set on gaining a bachelor’s degree in social work while also pursuing a degree in Indigenous Law. She is the second person in her family to go to university—the first being her mother.

“My mom, Christina, is everything. She is my bragging rights. She has done everything for me and my brother to succeed and now she’s in the Registered Nursing program, furthering her own education. She saves lives! I’m so proud of her.”

The obvious bond between Elizabeth and her mother is heartwarming. But her mother is not the only supporter in her corner. She recognizes her friends and Victoria High School staff who have all been very supportive.

During one of many Loran interviews already, Elizabeth recalls one particular question: ‘What are your biggest personal and professional achievements so far?’ She shared that her response included “showing up for herself” and “fostering a space for others to be proud of their own cultures.”

With both Hispanic and Indigenous ancestry, Elizabeth understands the importance of knowing who you are, the power of your own voice, and the change you can make for others.

Elizabeth lights up at the topic of change, and confidently lists a slew of areas she wants to contribute to including supporting youth of colour and diverse school counsellors, improving the foster care system, and making legal care more accessible to those who need it.

The Greater Victoria School District looks forward to seeing how Elizabeth continues to contribute to our community as well as keeping a close eye out for the Foundation’s winning scholars announcement in March.

Learn more about the Loran Award and the 2024 Finalists:


Greater Victoria School District No. 61


Google Translate is used as a free tool to enhance the usability of the Greater Victoria School District website. As such, the Greater Victoria School Disctrict is not responsible for Google Translate™.