Although it was cloudy and raining heavily in the afternoon of June 5th, all GEMgirls were smiling brightly inside the Aga Khan Museum for GEM’s Wrap Up Party. Rain was not going to be the reason a fantastic picnic for mentees, mentors, GEM staff and supporters didn’t happen, and so it was moved inside. The tables were set with teal plastic plates, forks, napkins, and there were awesome centre pieces which included jars of jelly beans and candles. There were yummy sandwiches, vegetables as well as gourmet cupcakes and cookies.

As we waited for others to arrive, we sat and thought about, “My best memory of the GEM program is…” and wrote it down on small cards. Many of the girls also signed the 2014/2015 GEM yearbook. One GEMgirl mentioned how she was going to miss the tasty sandwiches that were provided at every workshop! Another GEMgirl mentioned how she’ll miss the informative coffee chats and spending time with the GEMgirls! My favourite part of the party was when we got to write anything we wanted to in a card that will be mailed to us next Spring. I wrote about some of my wishes that I hope to see come true within a year.

Before we said our farewells, we took a group photo inside one of the art rooms in the Aga Khan Museum. We also took small group photos using the Polaroid camera as we laughed and made silly faces. It was tough for all of us to say goodbye to eachother as the Wrap Up Party was ending. The GEM program has given each one of us an experience that we will remember for a lifetime. It is time for the next year’s group of GEMgirls to shine as brightly as we have throughout the program.

Selina McCallum is a GEMgirl in the 2014/15 cohort,  student at Marc Garneau C.I. and a Digital Journalism Intern for GEM.