A world of possibilities has just opened up for W.J. Mouat's Sebastian Muermann.
The 17-year-old student body president and one of the school's character council leaders is the first student in Mouat's 40-year history to win the prestigious Loran Award, valued at $80,000.
The Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation grants the scholarship to talented young Canadians on the basis of character, service and leadership potential.
In addition to four years of funding for undergraduate studies at a Canadian university, a comprehensive enrichment program is included.
Muermann could hardly contain himself when he was chosen as one of the 30 Canadian students to receive the award.
"I got the good news phone call and I was very crazy hearing somebody say you've got the Loran scholarship," he said.
"I really did not think of myself as somebody who wins awards or gets that phone call, so it was very cool."
Muermann - who speaks German and French and is leaning towards studies in international business and political science - is well aware of the opportunities the scholarship presents.
"It means peace of mind for my Grade 12 year and it opens up a lot more doors," he said.
"I'm kind of in a unique spot and I have to make tough decisions, but it will be rewarding and I'm looking forward to it."
The Mouat student underwent a rigorous selection process that involved various application essays and days of panel interviews in Vancouver and Toronto.
Meeting the other nominees was rewarding in itself, said Muermann.
"All the nominees were these giving, kind, generous amazing people," he said.
"It just showed you Canada's best resource is our youth."
A straight-A student and an athlete, Muermann had to detail his commitment to community service and leadership to the Loran selection panels.
In addition to his duties as student body president, he is a member of Mouat's character council, which works on character development within the school.
Plus, he's on the Abbotsford Youth Council and teen advisory group for the Fraser Valley Regional Library.
The lanky teen, who stands six-feet, 11-inches tall, also plays centre on the Mouat Hawks basketball team and is a member of the school swim team.
On weekends, when his schedule allows, he volunteers at the Menno Home for the elderly.
Needless to say, Muermann's calendar is packed.
"It's a bit hectic but I enjoy it," he said.
"What motivates me is the drive I have, I guess, to push myself and find things that are fulfilling to me."
Muermann suspects he was selected for the award because of his willingness to stretch his boundaries.
"I guess that made me appealing as a candidate," he said.
"I'm willing to try everything because that's what it's all about, especially in high school.
"To try something new, and hope it works out."