Throughout summer and fall 2020, Georgian hosted several anti-Black racism forums to have open and honest discussions, and bring forward recommendations to make Georgian a more welcoming and safe space for Black students and employees.
One of the recommendations coming out of the forums was to help remove barriers to postsecondary education by creating scholarships for Black students.
With support from Georgian donors, three new scholarships were launched this academic year. Black students are encouraged to apply during the winter awards and scholarships cycle, which runs until Feb. 15.
From ally to accomplice
Professor Clement Bamikole is one of the leaders of Georgian’s forums. He sees the creation of these new scholarships as a positive step on the continuum from ally to accomplice.
“To be an ally is only the first step. To be an accomplice means you’re willing to go out of your comfort zone and assert your power with action. Offering financial support via scholarships is a tangible and positive action to help reduce barriers for Black students wanting to attend college.”
Professor Clement Bamikole
Georgian volunteer honours her parents with new award
Sybil Taylor, a member of Georgian’s Advancement Committee and long-time volunteer on the Advertising and Marketing Communications program advisory committee, recently launched the Robert and Qennefer Browne Award.
The award, valued at $2,000, will be presented to a full-time student who self-identifies as Black, demonstrates financial need, and provides a written statement describing how they have celebrated or supported the Black community.
Around June last year, Taylor found herself reflecting on the pandemic and Black Lives Matter movement and the hardships so many people were facing. She wondered what she could personally do to help.
She recalled her own postsecondary education experience and the idea of creating a scholarship resonated with her.
“When I was established as a professional, I asked my parents if I could pay them back for the financial support they gave me while I was in school,” says Taylor. “They said no but if I had children one day I should help them get an education, and if I didn’t have children, then I should help someone else’s children get an education.”
Taylor named the award after her parents who were lifelong students.
“I wanted to honour their generosity and deep respect for education.”
Taylor hopes that the recipients of her award know there are people behind them cheering them on, and that the financial support will help remove barriers to higher education.
Recent alumna creates fund for future students
Georgian alumna Roxann Whittingham, Child and Youth Care class of 2020, created the Black Education Empowerment Fund (B.E.E.F.) scholarship.
The award, valued at $1,000, will be presented to a full-time student studying at the Orillia Campus. The student will self-identify as Black, have a minimum grade point average of 70 per cent, and demonstrate financial need. Whittingham wants to encourage a higher representation of Black students at Georgian’s Orillia Campus, stimulating diversity in the college community. In creating her scholarship, she referred to research that found 43 per cent of Black high school students in the Toronto District School Board did not apply to postsecondary education (Towards Race Equity in Education: The Schooling of Black Students in the Greater Toronto Area).
Be sure to follow Georgian’s social media and website to learn more about alumna Roxann Whittingham. She’ll be featured in the Feb. 12 edition of our weekly series called People of Georgian.
Hyundai Canada supports diversity in automotive sector
Wanting to encourage a workforce that is representative of the diverse people of Canada, Hyundai Canada established the Hyundai Canada Diversity Scholarship.
The award, valued at $2,500, will be presented to a full-time student in the Honours Bachelor of Business Administration (Automotive Management) (Co-op) program, and preference will be given to Black students. The recipient must have a minimum grade point average of 80 per cent, demonstrate a commitment to community involvement and provide a written statement about what diversity and equality in the automotive industry means to them.
This is one of Hyundai Canada’s many initiatives to encourage workplace diversity, including mandatory unconscious bias training for employees, AI resumé screening to ensure fair hiring practices and creating two employee resource groups – [email protected] and [email protected] – to provide support, development and community involvement opportunities for all staff who choose to join.
Apply for scholarships by Feb. 15
The winter awards, scholarships and bursaries cycle runs from Dec. 15 to Feb. 15. All students are encouraged to submit an application. More than 200 awards and scholarships are available this cycle, valued at more than $500,000 (not including bursaries).
Georgian offers awards, scholarships and bursaries to students of all walks of life — domestic, international and Indigenous, full-time and part-time, first years, upcoming graduates and everyone in between.