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Thompson Rivers University Foundation breakfast highlights bright future

Dean of EDSW, Airini presented on the faculty's priorities at the 2016 Foundation campaign breakfast.
Image Credit: Thompson Rivers University
November 01, 2016 - 9:36 AM

The TRU Foundation campaign kicked off with a bang thanks to a pledge of $550,000 towards a new Nursing and Population Health building from the Stollery Charitable Foundation, announced at this morning’s annual campaign breakfast.

“We are proud to make this contribution to Thompson Rivers University on behalf of the directors of the Stollery Charitable Foundation,” said Spencer Bryson.

“The construction of a new Nursing and Population Health Building is well aligned with the foundation’s goal of improving health and education outcomes, and reducing poverty for the residents of Kamloops. It is an exciting opportunity to enhance the university and to educate more young people to help meet the growing demands of our health care system.”

The pledge comes on the anniversary of last year’s campaign breakfast that profiled the School of Nursing and its priorities, which included the new building.

“The Stollery Foundation has made Kamloops a safer and healthier community through many gifts to many organizations. We are incredibly blessed to be a part of their growing legacy,” said Vice-President Advancement, Christopher Seguin.

This year’s breakfast profiled new initiatives in the Faculty of Education and Social Work (EDSW) and the campaign for student assistance. Based on the theme “Be inspiring. Be Inspired” a few of the top priorities include:

  • First generation awards: increase student success by creating study awards, scholarships and bursaries for students from the first generation of families at university.
  • Knowledge makers: establish an endowment to help Indigenous students become researchers that make a difference. 60 Indigenous masters and doctorates in 60 months.
  • EDSW graduate study awards: expand the number of grants, scholarships and bursaries available for graduate students to foster innovation and leadership in education and social work.

The overall goal is to increase the number of students receiving financial support for education and social work studies from 1 percent to 10 percent.

“Our faculty helps students find a path that connects with their potential, whether that’s through our unique professional training in education and social work, university preparation studies, or First Nations language educator training,” said Dean of EDSW, Airini. “If you need a front door to what universities make possible then the opportunities are here in education, social work and academic access programs like UPREP and ESL.”

Bachelor of Education student Marie Sandy spoke to a room of 300 business people and donors in the Campus Activity Centre describing the positive impact that financial support has had on her education and her goals of becoming a leader in her community.

"The ability to continue on with my education is a gift. I had such a scare this summer over my funding, but I persevered with award applications and successfully received a much-needed bursary," said Sandy. "Without the help of donors that provide awards and bursaries, my dream of continuing on to become a Secwèpemc language teacher, and helping to revitalize the Secwèpemc language, would not be a reality."

Last year the Foundation raised over $3 million. The funds were raised from new and existing award donors, fundraising events, annual mail and calling campaigns and major gifts. The Foundation is a non-profit society with a volunteer board of 16 directors and another 50 volunteers from the community at large working hard on various committees to raise money for students. The Foundation endowment fund for student assistance now totals over $16 million.

About the Stollery Charitable Foundation

Robert and Shirley Stollery, founded the Stollery Charitable Foundation in 1994. They believed it was important to give back to the community that had helped them achieve success. Today’s announcement was the third major gift to TRU made by the Stollery Foundation. In November 2006 a donation of $50,000 to the TRU Foundation established an endowment with funds going annually to students in financial need and in 2009, a pledge of $300,000 named the House of Learning’s largest classroom.

News from © iNFOnews, 2016

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