Undergraduate students from across Canada compete annually to be one of four recipients of the Fessenden-Trott Scholarship. This year, UWinnipeg’s biology student Isaac Henderson rose to the top, securing this $9,000 scholarship.
The news that I received the scholarship gave me a sense of freedom, confidence, and pride.
This scholarship recognizes students who have demonstrated high academic achievement and community involvement, providing financial support to help them reach their career and academic goals.
With the support of mentors, programs, and scholarships, Henderson is pursuing his dream of becoming an ecologist.
“At my high school, my teacher and mentor, Terri Willard, was incredibly supportive and helped me to discover what I was interested in and who I was,” said Henderson. “She recommended I look at some UWinnipeg professors and their research projects. I approached Dr. Caleb Hasler, and was able to work with him as an intern in grade 10 assisting with his project on freshwater fish. He is one of the main reasons I am interested in biology now.”
Aside from his school-related interests, Henderson enjoys Ukrainian dance and cultural activities including Folklorama and recent benefit concerts to help raise humanitarian aid for Ukrainians impacted by the conflict in Ukraine. He has also volunteered as an exhibit interpreter at the Manitoba Museum and has delivered furniture to families in need with Hands of Hope.
In his spare time, Henderson enjoys wilderness canoeing, camping, and participating in programs that align with his interests such as IISD Experimental Lakes Student Experience and the creative writing mentorship program at Creative Manitoba.
With this scholarship, Henderson feels confident to reach his goal of actively protecting Canadian wetlands and helping keep our planet and forests healthy.
“I am incredibly honoured just to be the university’s nominee, and winning this scholarship will have a life-changing impact on me,” said Henderson. “As someone who can be hard on myself, it is a massive boost in confidence and a validation of the hard work I have put in to school to achieve the best grades that I can. The news that I received the scholarship gave me a sense of freedom, confidence, and pride.”
Background: Fessenden-Trott Scholarship
This scholarship is in honour of Professor Reginald Aubrey Fessenden and his late wife Helen May Trott Fessenden. Born in Canada in 1866, Fessenden came to Bermuda as a young man where he acted as Headmaster of the Whitney Institute for approximately two years. Later, he met Trott, and they were engaged to be wed in 1890.
During a distinguished career in Canadian and American universities, Fessenden became a renowned inventor of electrical and radio equipment and was a pioneer of radio broadcasting, developing an entirely new system of wireless transmission in 1900. Six years later, he effected the first two-way trans-Atlantic wireless telegraphic service between Massachussetts and Scotland. He also invented the oscillator, the fathometer (also known as the sonic depth finder), the wireless compass and other submarine signaling devices. He was honoured by the Institute of Radio Engineers in 1921 and received the John Smith medal for his invention in “Continuous Wave Telegraphy and Telephony” in 1922, followed by the Scientific American Medal for his numerous inventions relating to safety at sea.
When the Professor’s health began to fail, he and his wife returned to where they first met in Bermuda and resided there from 1928 until he died in 1932. Mrs. Fessenden remained in Bermuda until she died in 1941 and the Fessenden Trust was established by her will.