Notes for Remarks by

the Honourable Isabel Bassett

Minister of Citizenship, Culture and Recreation

at the Presentation of the John Brooks Scholarship Awards

October 25, 1997
Toronto Colony Hotel
Toronto, Ontario

Notes only
check against delivery

I am very happy to be with you on this occasion. Thank you for inviting me to be part of this event and for the opportunity to say a few words.

I will be brief. I am certainly not the main attraction tonight ! This evening is about our award winners and it's about the future.

Those of you who receive an award tonight have already accomplished much. You've been chosen for this important honour because you have done well at school and because you have already made a contribution to society.

Both of these are fine achievements for young people - and for people of any age.

But, you should know that you are receiving this award mostly for what we expect of you in the future. You all have many more years ahead of you than you have behind you, and we expect that those years will be put to good use - for yourself and for society. We expect a lot of you - and I encourage you to expect a lot of yourselves.

This award is not the Nobel Prize, and I'm sorry to say that you don't get a cheque for a million dollars. There is no reason why one or two of you should not get the Nobel Prize closer to the other end of your careers - but not tonight, that's for the future.

Peter Pan said that the future is an "undiscovered country". It's a country that belongs to young people - especially to the smart, talented young people such as you are.

I hope that you are at least a little thrilled to accept this honour. I can safely predict, however, that your greatest thrills in life are yet to come. There's nothing better than really knowing that you can change the world for the better. You are the people who can, and must, do that.

There are many people who stand behind these awards and make them possible: the sponsors, the institutions of higher education, the organizers, and the people who have paid to attend this dinner. I congratulate all of you on your hard work and foresight in creating and making a success of the John Brooks Scholarship Awards.

The award recipients should look around this room and know that all of us here will stand behind you in the future. All of us here will take a great interest in your future.

I sincerely congratulate the award recipients. Our best wishes and our best hopes for the future are with you.


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