Awards support Indigenous students’ studies

Spotlight Staff
The Government of Alberta is helping prepare Indigenous post- secondary students for success with $7 million in scholarships.

Financial awards are available to First Nations, Metis and Inuit students in programs that lead to careers in high-demand fields.

Eligible undergraduate students may receive up to $4,000 per year and eligible graduate students may receive up to $15,000.

The program is part of the government’s commitment to ensuring that Albertans are “Future Ready” and have the skills and training they need to succeed in a changing economy.

It is anticipated that up to 1,500 students will benefit from the awards every year.

“Every Albertan should have the same opportunity to pursue higher education, regardless of financial circumstances,” Advanced Education Minister Marlin Schmidt says.
“These awards are helping reduce barriers for Indigenous students, creating opportunities to build the skills they need for rewarding, successful careers.”

During the 2015-16 pilot program, about 940 students received more than $4.3 million in grants for their post- secondary studies through the Indigenous Awards.

“Bow Valley College is grateful to receive this support from the Government of Alberta,” says Sharon Carry, president and CEO of Bow Valley College.
“These awards will have a tremendously positive impact on Indigenous learners as well as create even more opportunities to engage Indigenous communities in learning and achievement.”

Students can contact their student awards office or visit their post- secondary institution’s website for application and deadline information. First Nations colleges and publicly funded post-secondary institutions in Alberta administer and deliver the $7-million program.

In addition to these awards, Alberta’s student-aid program has made a number of improvements for all post-secondary students, including increasing living allowances and loan limits, making loans and grants available to apprentices, and increasing grants to low-income students.

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