My SnowSkool Scholarship in Banff by Shauna Rigby – Week Eleven

Posted: March 31, 2011 in Course Diaries
Tags: , , ,

The day had finally arrived – the morning of our Level 2 exams. The sun was shining but not everyone was keen for the  start of a very long and stressful week!  Despite the dread, all of our skiers headed out to the front of Sunshine Village to meet our new test conductors and sort things out. We met at the ODD cabin and were split into 4 groups. Our conductors for the week were Ben, Casey, Kenji and Don – four very experienced Level 4 instructors. I was in a group with Ben. The day took off quickly when Ben had us skiing bumps straight away. The main focus was on being more aggressive and keeping forward the whole time. Everyone had different things to work on and by the end of the day quite a few of us had accomplished those goals.

We swapped course conductors on Tuesday morning so that it was a fair assessment of us. This time I got Casey, who is Technical Director at Sunshine. He was a lot more serious than Ben, which had it’s good and bad moments! Casey got us doing a little bit of teaching but mainly focused on our skiing ability. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday were probably the most stressful days of my life!!  The course conductors gave no insight into whether or not you were going to pass so everyone was freaking out. The pressure of Level 2 got to a lot people throughout the week but Friday morning brought some smiles with it – the conductors seemed to be a bit more happy than usual which put everyone more at ease. The snow was in perfect condition and the temperature was nigh on hoody weather! It was the last day of exams and everyone was putting in 100% to make sure their skiing and teaching were up to scratch but it was still non-stop exam pressure until 2pm when we finished. The worst part, however, was the 2 hour wait for results as still no one had any clue as to what their results would be.  As we gathered upstairs after the longest two hours of our lives, we sat in a big group and listened to the conductors announce individually who had successfully completed and passed their CSIA Level 2 exam. Everyone was applauded individually, which made the atmosphere great!  I have never seen so many happy faces at once. We even had a few tears of happiness from the boys (Fraser McGougan) haha. All of the Banff SnowSkoolers should be congratualted for an amazing set of achievements with 100% of the boarders passing and about 97% of the skiers passing!

After a loud a cheerful busride back to the hostel everyone headed straight to the kitchen for fish and chips to celebrate our awesome results! There was karaoke in the Storm Cellar and lots of graduation banners put up for us which got everyone in the best mood. For some it was their last night with SnowSkool as they were getting up early for a long plane trip back home. With only 2 weeks left on the course, we are all starting to fit in as much as we can.  Race coaching course starts on Sunday, followed by the avalanche and back country courses. There is no rest for a lot of SnowSkoolers – we tough it all out!

The SnowSkool course has been an amazing experience and all the weeks of training paid off on Friday afternoon. Fingers crossed for the people completeing courses next week – another badge to add to the collection!!



For more info about the SnowSkool scholarship, click here.


  1. Katelyn Quinlan says:

    I have loved reading all of Shauna’s diary entries. It has really enticed me to want to take part in this course when I have completed year 12 at the end of this year 🙂 The experience sounds amazing. I can’t wait.

    • snowskool says:

      Thanks for your comments Katelyn – we’d be glad to have you 🙂 If we can help with planning or you have any specific questions about anything, feel free to email who are always happy to give you advice. Good look with year 12 – work hard!!

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