Courtney Keith, B.A. English (Regina), J.D. (Ottawa), L.L.M. (London, England)
Courtney Keith graduated from Campion with a Bachelor of Arts in 2004.
Courtney was self-directed at charting her academic journey at university. Those in the registrar’s office were like Sherpas to her, giving her direction up the mountain: “Instead of feeling like I was being completely annoying and obsessive, it felt like they were on my team. There was always someone available to help while I dog-eared the life out of the course schedule and asked 20,000 questions.”
She feels her greatest accomplishment lies in the strength of her relationships with her family, ” … especially with my siblings and my niece and nephew, which almost feels like cheating because I didn’t actually have to do anything to become an aunt or a sister!”
A few years back, Courtney and her sister had an idea to encourage literacy in the community. What began as the Next Chapter Book Club (NCBC) through Inclusion Regina in 2011, has blossomed into numerous clubs throughout the city. The program trains volunteer facilitators to start their own clubs for adults with intellectual disabilities. NCBC aims to foster social connectedness, teach literary skills, and offer community engagement. “Volunteering is a big part of my life. It gives me the opportunity to share skill sets with people and organizations in many different areas. I can learn from and interact with people that I may not necessarily engage with in my professional life,” relays Courtney.
For Courtney, this plays into a greater vision where platforms like the book clubs form an all-embracing society with no labels: “Inclusion efforts, such as the NCBC, aim to educate people about the dignity and gifts of all and teach us to recognize our similarities and respect our differences. There is so much to be gained from creating expanded opportunities to interact with and understand each other and help increase our quality of life together.”
Courtney remains focused and determined, deliberate on making a mark. She received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award from the U of R in 2014 in recognition of her contributions in the community, display of leadership, and setting the bar higher for future graduates, “It was really special to be able to represent Campion as an alumna in receiving that honour”, says Courtney.