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Yukon College gives $75,900 to students at awards ceremony this week

October 26, 2016

WHITEHORSE—Thanks to the generosity of donors, covering the cost of tuition, textbooks, school supplies and living expenses will be a little easier for 40 Yukon College students this week.

The College will hand out $75,900 at the annual Student Awards Ceremony this week, which brings award donors together with the students who earned them. The students will receive financial awards with an average value of $1,000 and entrance scholarships that cover the full cost of tuition for one year.

“Although we have tripled the money available to students this year, there were 226 applications for assistance from 74 students, many more than we are able to fulfill,” said Wendy Tayler, Yukon College Foundation Board Chair. “This is why the Foundation board has set the goal of growing annual student awards by a further $34,000.”

“Students have a much better chance of gaining a scholarship or bursary at Yukon College than a bigger college or university down South,” said Mike Hemmings, a second year Business Administration diploma student. “This assistance means a lot. Several years ago I was unable to continue with a degree at a BC university due to the cost of living there and lack of funds. It was very frustrating.”

Hemmings is receiving the inaugural BDO Canada LLP Scholarship of $2,000. He works part-time at Northwestel and runs a business with his partner alongside a full course load.

"This scholarship will really take the financial pressure off and help me pay for my books, rent and transportation,” said Hemmings.

“This is an amazing gift that also fills me with a sense of pride. The recognition of all the hard work that goes into being a student is as important as the financial help,” said Nicole Rondeau, a second year First Nations Governance and Public Administration diploma student.

Rondeau is receiving the $1,000 Stantec Scholarship and the $500 Leith Wheeler Investment Counsel Award. A mother and step-mother to eight children, she is taking her courses entirely online at home, with assistance from the Carmacks Yukon College campus. Rondeau plans to continue onto the forthcoming Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous Governance.

Donovan Bielz, a graduate of Vanier Catholic Secondary School in Whitehorse, was awarded an entrance scholarship and will receive the Lake Laberge Lions Club Bursary of $500. The Pre-Apprentice Electrical student says the support is a big help.

“The textbooks in my program are very expensive. This award will go towards those books and buying tools for my apprenticeship once I graduate,” said Bielz.

The awards are made possible through generous donations by individuals, groups and companies to the Yukon College Foundation.

The Student Awards ceremony takes place in the Kinnikinnick Kaff at Yukon College at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 26 with a reception to follow.