2017 Scholarship Athlete Spotlight: Alessandra Gentile

A list of accolades thus far would describe Alessandra’s volleyball career as

2016/17 U Sports National Champion and 1st Team All-Star, 2013 The Province’s High School Player of The Year,  2013 20U Canada Summer Games Silver Medalist, the list goes on…

And most recently, the 5th year setter from UBC was announced the 2017 recipient of the Ray Lepp Scholarship! We asked Aly a few questions to get to know her beyond the volleyball court.

What faculty are you in?
Faculty of Science with a Major in Biology. Planning to pursue a MSc in Marine Biology.

What years did you play Team BC? 

U14 Baden Cup -2009-(14 years old)
U16 Western Elites Bronze -2010-(15 years old as a rightside)
U17 Western Canada Games Gold-2011-(16 years old as a rightside)
U19 NTTC-2012-(17 years old as a setter)
U20 Canada Summer Games Silver-2013-(18 years old as a rightside)

Aside from winning medals or matches, what was one of your favourite memories playing with Team BC?

 Training in Kamloops with my teammates for Team BC are some of my fondest volleyball memories.

Name your favourite coach, trainer, or teammate from your time with Team BC.

 Looking back at my Team BC career, I always think of Dan Huzar. He was instrumental in making me the player I am today. He was(and still is) very supportive of my goals and pushed me to reach my potential.

One of the criterion for the Ray lepp Scholarship requires applicants to have a positive impact to other athletes and/or the community. What are some projects you are most proud of?

I have coached with the Thunder Atomic program, Thunder Beach, Coquitlam Ducks Beach, The Richmond Oval, multiple U14 Baden Cups and with the Volleyball BC Atomic development program in 2015. I also love coming into different club and/or high school teams for a practice here and there to share some words of wisdom from my volleyball career thus far.


Outside of volleyball, I currently volunteer at The Purdy Pavillion as a recreation volunteer. I am also the Social Vice President of the UBC Oceanography Club and one of my team representatives on the Thunderbird Athletic council. You can also catch me being a Bamfield Marine Sciences Student Ambassador on the UBC Campus running information sessions and chatting up students about science and the ocean.

What are some unique routines prior to playing your match, or even during the game?

Always have to get that pre-game coffee.

What are some future volleyball-related goals for yourself?

See how far the sport will take me. Volleyball will always be a part of my life. I plan on continuing to coach even after I am done playing. I want to give back to the “volleyball community” that has given me so much.

How can people follow you on Instagram?


About Ray Lepp

Ray Lepp was a founding member of Volleyball BC (formerly BC Volleyball Association) in 1965, and continued as a Board Member until 1978. He was the President and/or Vice President for 10 of his 22 years a Board of Director. In his early years Ray played volleyball in Estonia in a very strong school and club system. Having recognized that the profile of volleyball in Canada was lower he worked tirelessly to increase interest in the sport. Some of the major programs for the Association included recruiting international coaches to BC, the Winfield Volleyball Camp, and the Pacific Rim Championships.

Ray was certified as a National Official during the time of the Pacific Rim Championships and travelled to the tournament as head of delegation for the Pacific Rim program. During the 1960’s and 1970’s, Ray coached the UBC Men’s Volleyball Team for a total of 10 years. At one time, six players on the Canadian National Team had been coached by Ray at UBC.

In 1989, Ray helped to fundraise some money for the Estonia National Team, who was touring BC, and whose flight was suddenly stopped in Toronto. With the raised funds and Ray’s personal contribution, the team made it to BC. With Ray’s passing, he donated funds through his will to provide a permanent endowment that would support this scholarship in perpetuity.

2018 Scholarship Information: The Ray Lepp Application deadline for 2018 scholarship is March 15th, 2018. Visit the Scholarship & Awards page for more information.

More Information on the Ray Lepp Scholarship can be found on the Awards & Scholarships page.

Go back to the announcement of the 2017 Scholarship Recipients.


Did we miss anything? Let us know at communications[at]volleyballbc.org.
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