OFF TO JAPAN – Conor McDavid is fundraising for his trip to Japan that he will take next month. McDavid will represent Canada in Toyko at the Japanese Speech Competition.

Red Deer graduate representing Canada in Japan

  • Jun. 26, 2013 3:01 p.m.

Conor McDavid is fascinated by Japan. That’s why he took the Japanese language program when he started Grade 9 at Lindsay Thurber high school four years ago. It turns out he is so good at Japanese he will represent Canada in Tokyo this July at the 18th Annual Japanese Speech Competition. And now that he is graduating high school here, he is planning to spend the next school year in Japan on an exchange program.

“I’ve always loved Japanese. The teachers are great, the friends are great, the language is difficult, especially the writing, but I enjoy it a lot.”

At first he didn’t want to enter a Japanese speech contest in Edmonton, but his teacher talked him into going, and he came in first. Then he found out he was chosen to travel to Japan and would be representing Canada against a score of other countries. “What! I wasn’t expecting that,” said McDavid. “I’m kind of nervous to go and speak. But I’m excited. And I will do my best.”

His accommodations and meals in Japan are covered but McDavid still has to raise the $1,700 for his airfare. So now he’s looking for donations for that and is actively fundraising. “I’ve created a newsletter that describes my involvement with Japanese and I’m going from place to place trying my best to get businesses to support me. Some already have, like Tom Bast Sports, and I’ve got donations from several teachers too.”

He added, “Japan is so different. The writing looks so cool, the people are so cool. I fell in love with the differences, especially the cultural differences. (On the trip) I’ll do more than I actually thought for two weeks. We get to do some cooking, we do some cultural exercises, go to a festival, then we get to go to middle school and talk to the kids.”

LTCHS Principal Jim Clevette said he is proud of McDavid.

“Conor is a real credit to the international languages program at Lindsay Thurber and to the international languages program at Red Deer Public. We bring in international students, organize international trips and put on exchanges that show how well Red Deer Public and Lindsay Thurber go out to meet the world.”

It’s no surprise that McDavid’s future plans include university studies in East Asian languages and culture with the hope of joining Canada’s foreign service so he could live and work in Japan someday.

acryderman@reddeerexpress.com

Just Posted

Oh What a Night! celebrates iconic American legends

Frankie Valli and Andy Williams honoured during Red Deer show

WATCH: Hundreds come out to annual Red Deer Lights the Night

Celebration featured lighting of City Hall Park and Red Deer’s Christmas Tree

Santa Claus comes to Bower Place

Dozens line up Saturday to have photo taken with Jolly Old Saint Nick

Bruce Buruma enters the UCP nomination race for Red Deer South

Vote for candidate takes place early in the New Year

Trudeau offers to help Pacific islands face climate change impact

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with the leaders from the Pacific island nations on Saturday during the APEC Summit in Papua New Guinea

B.C. asking for tips on ‘dirty money’ in horse racing, real estate, luxury cars

Action follows a Peter German report on money laundering in B.C. casinos

Canadian dead more than a week after plane crash in Guyana: Global Affairs

Global Affairs said it couldn’t provide further details on the identity of the Canadian citizen

Privacy concerns over credit card use for legal online pot purchases

Worries follow privacy breaches at some Canadian cannabis retailers

Death toll rises to 76 in California fire with winds ahead

Nearly 1,300 people remain unaccounted for more than a week after the fire began

Trump says report on Khashoggi death expected in a few days

Jamal Khashoggi was a columnist for The Washington Post who was slain Oct. 2 inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul

CUPW requests mediator as deadline for Canada Post offer expires without deal

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau weighed in Saturday night with a last-minute plea to the two sides

Trudeau says he won’t negotiate in public on future of LGBTQ rights in USMCA

Legislators urged Trump not to sign the agreement unless the language was removed.

Grande Prairie RCMP charge 19 men, ranging in age from 23 to 69, in prostitution sting

Three-day operation targets sex activities in the downtown area

Most Read