Castlegar Rebels captain Josh Wiens is humbled, happy and honoured to be the second recipient of the Remembering Grant Sheridan Scholarship.
Wiens received a call from former Kelowna Chief Myles Mattila, founder of the MindRight for Athletes Society, who created the new scholarship for Kootenay International Junior Hockey League players last season.
“It was good that he reached out and it was good to talk to him,” says Wiens, who played against Mattila a couple of times in the KIJHL. “I was pretty thankful and said thank you to him a couple times.”
When Wiens received Mattila’s voice message, he was trying to figure out who it was and simply thought it was a funny message.
“My first thought was maybe he was just going to interview me and talk to me about the award. I thought maybe he talked to some of the other candidates first,” says Wiens. “Then he told me I won it. It took me off guard.”
“I would like to congratulate Josh Wiens on being the recipient of the 2021 Grant Sheridan Memorial Scholarship. Josh has exemplified being a role model and leader for his hockey team and community,” says Mattila. “He leads by example through volunteering in the community and by being captain of the Castlegar Rebels. I am excited to see what Josh will be accomplishing in the future while he’s attending college and playing hockey for Briercrest.”
Wiens, who also received a KIJHL bursary, says he gained a lot from playing in the league, especially getting the chance to be a go-to-guy. The Rebels coaching staff helped him improve his skills and taught him a lot.
He also became involved with the community, which he grew to love, and may return to when he is finished college.
“It’s something that I like to do. We got to do things with schools,” says Wiens of the community engagement, which included working with Special Olympics. “What we were asked to do was always fun. I think it was cool to meet some of the people.”
Wiens says it’s important to give back to the community as it’s a way to show them support for coming to games.
Wiens’ coach-GM Carter Duffins says he’s deserving of this scholarship because of his focus on developing and improving himself as a hockey player and young man.
“His work ethic and his character, really exemplify what the award is meant for,” says Duffin. “I’m excited to see him be recognized.”
Wiens spent his entire three-year career with the Rebels and played a big part in their rebuild, but also creating the culture the Rebels organization believes a Rebel should be.
“I’ve been excited to watch him grow as a young man. He was always one of the guys to make sure that he would step up and lead the way, whether it was working as a volunteer with some of our community work or some of our fundraising initiatives,” says Duffin. “His focus was on improving and being better and making a diligent effort to show leadership.”