What is your name, age, school, and what community are you from?
My name is Jane Riley Basque I am eighteen years old and I was born and raised in Potlotek.
What’s your favorite subject in school?
Law 12! This class was my favorite because I like to be informed and aware of my rights. I believe this is important because we need to know how to protect and practice our treaty rights. I enjoyed discussing and debating controversial issues. I have also always been fascinated with criminal justice issues and could see myself furthering my education in this area.
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be, and why?
I would like to visit Texas or Tennessee. I grew up on country music and would love the opportunity to go to see some local and lesser known bands and artists.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Pretty much anything outdoors; I really enjoy being surrounded by nature. I like to fish, hunt, and I especially enjoy photography. I also like to spend time with my sister. She is a big part of why I have made it this far; I try to set a good example for her and show her education is key.
Do you have a role model? If so, who? And why?
My role models are my parents and my teachers. They believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself. They encouraged me through some of my hardest days to keep trying.
What is your best memory from your high school years?
Some of my best memories from my high school years were spent outside at the basketball court with my best friend Matt. Everyone makes me laugh at my school. We’re like a family because we spend so much time together and we always try to make the best of it .
What is the best thing about your school?
The best thing about my school is the staff. They are always there for you. If you go to school having a bad day they don’t try and make it worse. They let you be and let you know that they are always there for you. The teachers always encourage us to do the best we can. They let us come in early for extra help if we need (which has definitely helped me bring my marks up). We recently got a brand new building! For the last 5 years we have been in the Education Office and Mi’kmawey School. We shared the buildings and always made it work. We’re very appreciative of our new building; it’s a thirty second walk to our sweat lodge and our trail in the woods. Elders and community members have come in to teach us about our culture, history, and traditions throughout these years. We had pipe/naming ceremonies, drum and basket making workshops, eeling and fishing trips, and canoeing/kayaking to the Island. We take time to learn about our culture, history and take part in community events (like the new Canal design meeting). My favourite thing about my school is our relationships with each other.
Who has made an impact on you?
My parents had a huge impact on me. They always encouraged me to stay in school and work hard for my education because nobody else is going to do it for you. You’re responsible for the life you live.
Is there something you’d like to see in your school or community that isn’t there now?
If anything, I would like to see more funding for sports and activities for the youth to help people be more physically active. I would also like to see more places for teens and kids to hang out and socialize. I think a gym would be an amazing thing to have here in Potlotek.
Words of advice, a personal favorite quote, or a thank-you?
“It’s the oldest story in the world. One day you’re 17 and planning for someday…and then, quietly, and without you ever really noticing…someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life.” – Nathan Scott