New scholarship program directed toward Indigenous students

25 scholarships to be awarded annually each worth up to $60,000

Indigenous students can apply for a new scholarship announced through TD. Recipients will receive as much as $60,000 over the course of their post-secondary career to study at places like Nunavut Arctic College, shown here. (File photo)

By Crystal St.Pierre
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Windspeaker.com

​TD has announced a new scholarship program it is offering Inuit, First Nations and Métis students from across Canada.

TD Scholarship for Indigenous Peoples makes available 25 scholarships annually, each worth a potential $60,000 with a disbursement of $15,000 each school year.

Recipients will receive $10,000 to be applied to tuition per year and the remaining $5,000 put toward living expenses. If a recipient’s tuition is less than $10,000 each year, the remaining balance can be used for living expenses.

“As an organization, TD has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion and we have an important role to play in helping to advance Truth and Reconciliation,” said Moon Hur, who works in TD’s digital department and is a member of the bank’s Indigenous Peoples committee

TD indicated the scholarship is a response to call to action No. 92 from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report on the legacy of residential schools. It calls, in part, for Indigenous people to have equitable access to job training and education opportunities.

“We have put an immense amount of work into working directly with people from the community to really understand the unique challenges and the barriers that they face in gaining post-secondary education,” said Hur.

Since March, the committee has worked with the Aboriginal Financial Officers Association, or AFOA Canada, to research and develop the best way for TD to support Indigenous communities, the fastest-growing population in Canada, said Hur.

Some of the barriers discovered through the research included pressure to prove identity, minimum grade point average pressure, lengthy essay requirements which often favour strong writers, and volunteering and community involvement pressure.

AFOA Canada is a not-for-profit association that helps Indigenous people “better manage and govern their communities and organizations through a focus on enhancing management, finance and governance practices and skills,” its website states.

“One of the main things that we focused on through building this program is that we want to make this program open to as many students from the community as much as possible. So the criteria is actually regardless of your field of study,” said Hur.

Applicants can be currently registered or have just applied to any post-secondary school and in any minimum two-year program of their choice.

In addition to the awarded scholarships, each recipient will have the opportunity to spend four months during the summer to work within the various departments housed at TD.

For those interested in submitting an application to be a recipient of the scholarship, the deadline for submissions is Jan. 16, 2023 at 5 p.m. ET. For more information visit https://afoa.ca/td/.

 

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