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Justin Trudeau Visits St. Lauren Adult Centre - A Student’s Perspective

Thursday, April 17, 2008

By Alicia Audain

The name Justin Trudeau is immediately associated with that of his father, former Prime Minister of Canada, Pierre Elliott Trudeau. However, it was all Justin when he visited St. Lauren Centre on Thursday 17th April, 2008. From first sight, this tall, handsome young man captivated his audience. With his assertiveness and appropriately placed sense of humor, he demanded attention as he jumped right into his speech.

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His challenge to the Staff and Students was “What can we do to be a leader today?” “How to get involved, to make a difference in this world?” He pointed out that the world is in a great transition, in terms of Global Warning and environmental awareness, the United States of America’s impending election, wars, and other crises around the world. He encouraged individuals to step forward and make a change, by volunteering, doing charity work or by being conscious of personal choices that help the environment. Never had I witnessed such hope, not only for Quebec and Canada, but for the world. Mr. Trudeau stressed that we should educate ourselves about what is going on around the globe. He admitted it would be difficult figuring out what to do with all the information, but to follow our hearts.

In his opinion, one of the biggest problems we face is that societies are disconnected, there is a lack of community feeling with each other. He spoke of maintaining our values, the need for security, and simply to know that we matter, as a common thread that binds us, regardless of race, country of origin or religion.

In response to a student’s question about his childhood with his father as Prime Minister, Justin said he was very much aware, and felt fortunate for his experiences. He continued, that he used the opportunity as a stepping stone to do what felt right to him. Where he can give back and do the most good, referring to his role as a school teacher.

Justin Trudeau is dedicated to making his own mark, whether in the pages of this country’s history or in the lives of everyday people he encounters. His speech was motivating, filled with love for this country and the world. I was inspired to make a positive difference, and as he said, “to be the best person I can be”.

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