The Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) and OpenCircle are pleased to announce Tyler Wallace of the Blackfalds Bulldogs and Reed Jacobson of the Canmore Eagles as the recipients of the 2023 OpenCircle AJHL Scholarship.

The scholarship recipients were evaluated based on academic performance, an essay submission regarding leadership, and reference letters from a coach and teacher of the applicant.  Each recipient will be awarded a $2,000 scholarship towards their post-secondary education.

Tyler Wallace’s work ethic and leadership have been exemplary throughout his high school career, “Over the four years that I taught Tyler, I have found him to be an incredible student-athlete and a strong contributing member to the Sbringbank Community High School community”, stated SCHS Teacher Shane Martell. “He is caring, thoughtful, passionate, selfless and dedicated to not only his academics, but also to his athletics and to the community on the whole. Throughout High School, Tyler carried an academic average of ~90% and graduated receiving ‘honors with distinction’, all while he continued to support and advance his athletic prowess.”

“Tyler is a driven young man with an extremely bright future ahead of him. He is very well-liked and respected by students and teachers alike and has an uncanny ability to reach multiple groups through his charismatic personality; which further lends to his social capital within the school and beyond. Recently, Tyler earned a Division I scholarship to play hockey at Niagara University. It is evident through his daily interactions, that Tyler sincerely wishes to make a difference on a large scale.”

Blackfalds Bulldogs Assistant Coach Ryan Tobler praised Wallace’s contributions as a teammate, “Tyler is a very talented two-way center that possesses a lethal shot as reflected by his league-leading 42 goals this season.  Tyler is a very well-rounded player that is reliable, hard-working, and plays in all situations.  Simply put, he can control a hockey game and make players around him better. As a teammate, Tyler is someone that players look up to for advice, both on and off the ice, as they greatly respect and value his opinions. He truly cares about helping his teammates grow as hockey players, while taking the time to share ideas and experiences that he has garnered over his hockey career.”

Swift Current Composite High School Teacher, Andrew Judge, was pleased to recommend Reed Jacobson for the OpenCircle AJHL Scholarship.  “I had the privilege of teaching Reed in his grade 11 and 12 years at SCCHS. Every day, Reed arrived to class excited to learn, and his enthusiasm for themes and concepts studied in class was infectious.  What impresses me most about Reed is his ability to strike a balance between his academic and athletic careers. While achieving an A+ average in high school, Reed was also playing AAA hockey with the Swift Current Legionnaires.  Reed has completed High School and continued with his academic interests in health sciences through his completion of several undergraduate courses at Athabasca University, and he has done this while continuing with his hockey career in the WHL and AJHL.”

Reed Jacobson was a key contributor to the on and off ice success of the Canmore Eagles this season.  “Reed has displayed professionalism, dedication, and passion for the game,” said Eagles GM / Head Coach Andrew Milne. “As one of the older members of the team, he was a vital part of the leadership group tasked with ensuring the day-to-day operation of the club and has been a crucial member of our team and the culture we developed in Canmore.

“As Reed grew as a player and a person, I took a tremendous amount of pride in not just his on-ice performance, but in that personal growth and development that you hope to see as a coach of Junior hockey players. Reed has grown into a true team player, always encouraging and motivating their teammates and leading by example both on and off the ice.  Beyond his athletic achievements, Jacobson is also an exceptional student and citizen. He has maintained a high GPA and actively participate in various community service projects, demonstrating his commitment to academic excellence and social responsibility.”

About OpenCircle: Building on 35 years of experience as Merit Contractors Association and Merit National, OpenCircle elevates employers and employees by supporting well-being in work, life, and the spaces in between.  As changes occur globally and at home in Canada, they shine the spotlight on the employer-employee relationship, encouraging us to rethink how we work and how we best support employees and their families. Increasingly, the way in which businesses respond to environmental, social, and governance issues, is of concern to the marketplace and society as a whole.