RBC announces 2008 RBC Aboriginal Scholarship Winners
Expanding awards program in 2009
TORONTO, October 23, 2008 — Heading off to
university or college this fall just got a little easier -
financially - for eight deserving students through the RBC Aboriginal Student Awards program. For the fourteenth consecutive
year, RBC will award scholarships of up to $4,000 annually
for education expenses, for a maximum of four years at university
or two years at college.
"RBC is dedicated to helping Canada's aboriginal students
realize their full potential. The RBC Aboriginal Student Awards
program gives us a way to invest in those who have demonstrated
academic excellence and a capacity for leadership," said
Christianne Paris, vice-president, Client & Business Strategy,
Business Financial Services. "We applaud their accomplishments.
I am also pleased to announce that we are expanding the program
with two additional scholarships in 2009 to help more students
get closer to achieving their dreams."
The RBC Aboriginal Student Awards program is offered to students
who are currently enrolled in full-time post-secondary studies.
Selections are made by an independent committee of academics
from the Aboriginal community and RBC representatives, and
are based on personal and academic achievements as well as
individual financial need.
There are two categories through which students can apply
- one is directed at students majoring in disciplines related
to the financial services industry, and the other is for students
enrolled in programs not related to the financial sector.
To date, RBC has awarded 77 scholarships totalling $906,000
to Aboriginal students in Canada.
Students interested in learning more about the 2009 RBC
Aboriginal Student Awards Program can visit www.rbc.com/careers/aboriginal_student_awards.html.
Applications will be accepted from January 1, 2009 to March 31, 2009.
2008 RBC Aboriginal Student Award winners:
Métis from the community of Selkirk, Manitoba
Kristy-Lee is currently enrolled in the in the Engineering
Access Program (ENGAP) at the University of Manitoba, pursuing
her degree in Electrical Engineering. In addition to attending
university full time, she is earning her Certified General
Accounting (CGA) diploma and working part time for Manitoba
Hydro. In her "spare time", she volunteers for the
Selkirk Canoe and Kayak Club, and mentors grade eight girls
at an annual Young Woman's Trades Conference.
Status (Treaty Indian) from Merritt, British Columbia
Shelby's goal is to earn her Master's Degree in Business from
Thompson Rivers University and then pursue a career in accounting
or law. Outside of school, she loves to sing, and while volunteering
and singing at senior's homes has been fun, she is most proud
of the opportunity to open for renowned Aboriginal (Inuk)
singer/songwriter, Susan Aglukark.
Status (Treaty Indian) and member of the Whitefish River
First Nation, Birch Island, Ontario
Matthew is working to achieve his Master's degree in Commerce
and Administration from Laurentian University. Upon graduation,
Matthew wants to become a financial planner to help others
be prepared for life's challenges. He says that he was taught
that "it takes an entire community to help us prosper,
to reach our goals and to grow". Matthew believes this
has shaped his personality; taught him to be a goal seeker,
and enables him to grab a hold of opportunities whenever they
First Nations, Whitehorse, Yukon Territories
Aaron is currently attending the Haskayne School of Business
at the University of Calgary to achieve his degree in Business.
He credits his family for showing him that dreams can become
a reality if you work hard enough. Aaron has participated
in a number of First Nations cultural events, including an
Aboriginal Youth Feast and the North American Indigenous Games;
and believes strongly in traditions that promote and celebrate
aboriginal history and cultural pride. In addition, Aaron
also volunteers in his community, including helping with local
food drives and fundraising for underprivileged families in
Non-Status Indian, Town of Massey Drive, Newfoundland
Tyler, who is currently working to earn his Bachelor of Science
degree from Memorial University, hopes to become a doctor.
He is active on his school's wrestling team and has earned
a number of medals. His wrestling skills also earned him a
spot on the Western NL Winter Games Team. In addition, Tyler
volunteers his time to help elementary students in his community;
and is part of the Model United Nations and Amnesty International
Groups at school.
First Nation Algonquin from the community of Kitigan Zibi,
Maniwaki, Quebec. Katrina is in her third and final year
at Heritage College, where she is working to obtain her diploma
in Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE). Upon completion,
Katrina wants to go to university and earn her Bachelor of
Education degree so that she can become a teacher. Her goal
is to work with children in her own community or in another
First Nation community and tell them "that they can achieve
whatever they set their mind to do" a quote her parents
have often repeated to her. She helps educate her classmates
and college about the history and culture of the Algonquin
people; and in her own community, actively participates in
community gatherings and works with children as often as she
Mohawk Nation from Six Nations, Ohsweken, Ontario
Melanie's name, Gowagowaneh, means "Leader of Girls"
in the Cayuga language. With this in mind, she wants to be
an inspiration to her three children, and to all other Aboriginal
mothers who feel it is impossible to accomplish a dream to
finish their education. Melanie is currently enrolled at Brock
University, where she is working on her Bachelors of Business
Economics degree. She is proud of her heritage and has represented
her country as an ambassador for Native peoples. She has also
been selected to represent Team Ontario for Senior Women's
Volleyball for the North American Indigenous Games 2008.
Métis, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Josée, who is attending the Asper School of Business
at the University of Manitoba, wants to obtain an honours
degree in Commerce. She then wants to obtain her Masters,
and then work in marketing - a field she feels is underrepresented
by Aboriginal and Métis people. Like her ancestors,
her goal is to make a valuable contribution to society, and
to be a role model for others. She is very active in her community
and in school activities and is fluent in a number of languages.
RBC has a long-standing relationship with Canada's Aboriginal
Peoples and in 2007 donated over $849,500 to support Aboriginal
causes. In addition to the Aboriginal Student Awards program,
RBC joined the Assembly of First Nation's (AFN) Corporate
Challenge with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding
(MoU) on the final day of the Special Chiefs Assembly in Ottawa
on December 12, 2007. In addition, RBC supports the Historica
Foundation's heritage programs for Aboriginal students and
donated funds to the Dominion Institute to support its Aboriginal
Youth Writing Challenge. Recipients who are interested in
pursuing careers in the financial services industry are also
considered for summer and post-graduate employment opportunities
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Jackie Braden, 416 974-2124, firstname.lastname@example.org