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Rediscovering passions: Meet Mitchell Langford

Photo of Mitchell Langford at NSCC's Lunenburg Campus.

A new direction

At 36 years old, Mitchell Langford is changing directions in life following his passion for the environment and making changes for himself, and his family. The second-year Natural Resources Environmental Technology (NRET) student at NSCC's Lunenburg Campus is an example of willpower and determination, quick to share his gratitude for the support he received along the way through awards like the Black and African Nova Scotian Cost of Living Bursary funded by Rapid Response donors.

Originally from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Mitchell spent 11 years as a professional cook, mastering the dance of the kitchen. However, the long hours, wages, and physical toll it took led him to seek a more sustainable and fulfilling career path.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Mitchell's opportunity for change emerged. A friend invited him to work on a farm in Annapolis Valley, renewing his passion for the environment. “Working outside and seeing the Bay of Fundy every day, learning how these plants are growing, my curiosity sparked,” said Mitchell. “And then a friend told me that I needed to finally invest in myself if I wanted to change my career. I needed to actually take a look at what I wanted to do.”

Getting started

This pivotal moment prompted Mitchell to invest in his future. He enrolled in NSCC's Adult Learning Program (ALP) in 2021 to finish high school and embarked on a journey of rediscovery.

This led him to apply to the NRET program, giving him new opportunities to explore his love for the outdoors. “In my early 20s, my best friend and I were like minor environmentalists. So, I've always been drawn to Mother Nature,” said Mitchell. “At that point, I got so excited because now it's like everything's becoming tangible. I see a potential future and it just opened up my world so much.”

The ripple effect of financial support

Mitchell received funding to return to school, but it left him with a tight budget and no room for error. With the help of his Student Services Advisor, Jeremy Porter, he was advised on how to access the support he needed, including the Black and African Nova Scotian Cost of Living Bursary. “It was huge, especially at the time when I needed money,” said Mitchell. “I got some gas in my car, I got some groceries, I got what I needed.”

The ripple effect of this award was substantial, reducing financial stress and enabling him to stay focused on his education to continue into the second year of his program. “The financial stressors overtake your assignments,” said Mitchell. “It's helped tremendously. It's a bit of relief, now I can breathe and come back to level ground.”

Supporting Black and African Nova Scotian students

To potential donors supporting Rapid Response which funds awards like the Black and African Nova Scotian Cost of Living Bursary, Mitchell says, “I know a lot of Black individuals like me who don't come from money or have that financial support. Just knowing that there are potential resources is uplifting. I want others to know we're not just struggling out here, we're trying to make something of ourselves and make Black excellence.”

He encourages donors to be aware of the impact they can make, regardless of the amount they give. “$20 can put gas in your tank. Every little bit counts and I'm very appreciative of it.”

Your support makes a lifelong impact on students, families and communities. Support NSCC students like Mitchell today by donating to Rapid Response.

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