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Indigenous students reflect on 2019-2020 scholarships

September 2020 – At Cenovus, we believe in supporting education and training for youth in Indigenous communities where we live and work. That’s why we work with Indspire, a non-profit Indigenous organization, to offer scholarships for Indigenous students who are pursuing a full-time degree, diploma or certified trade program. Over the past seven years, we’ve awarded over 190 scholarships to Indigenous students valued at over $660,000.

In the 2019-2020 school year, we awarded 40 scholarships to students in our operating areas. The recipients are enrolled in a wide range of programs including agriculture, arts, business, engineering, pipefitting and welding, and are great examples of Indigenous people determined to reach their goals.

If you’re an Indigenous student in one of our operating areas, we encourage you to apply for a scholarship to reduce the cost of your post-secondary education. These scholarships are valued at $3,500 and are renewable for up to four years, or to the completion of your first degree. The application process for the 2020-2021 Indigenous scholarship program is now open.

Hear from some of our 2019-2020 scholarship recipients below:

Boyd Gerow (Bachelor of Agriculture, University of Alberta)

Boyd Gerow, Bachelor of Agriculture, University of Alberta
Boyd Gerow

I am currently a second-year, full-time student at the University of Alberta in the Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences Faculty with a major in Agricultural Business Management. My long-term goal is to be an Agricultural Accountant in Alberta.

I would like to thank Cenovus for the bursary I was awarded through Indspire's Building Brighter Futures. As a young Métis man raised by a single mother, your gift has lightened the financial load on our family for 2019 and these funds will go directly to my winter 2020 tuition.

Without donors like Cenovus and programs like Indspire, students like me may not be able to afford to attend post-secondary institutions without accumulating lots of debt by the end of a four-year program. Your generous support has not gone unnoticed. I will make you proud and make a difference in the world.

Claudette Machatis (Bachelor of Arts, Concordia University College of Alberta)

Claudette Machatis, Bachelor of Arts, Concordia University College of Alberta
Claudette Machatis

I am Denesuliné from the Cold Lake First Nation in the Treaty Six Territory. I am in my third year of a Bachelor of Arts degree, studying Sociology. My grandmother and mother have always encouraged me to pursue education and were my greatest influences in my decision to return to school to finish my degree.

I have worked for my Nation in many capacities including post-secondary education, housing and for our band-owned businesses. This scholarship, through the Indspire awards program, has allowed me the freedom to fulfill my obligations to my family while continuing to complete my academic program. I plan to complete the undergraduate program and pursue graduate studies in order to support my family and community in the future.

Masichok (thank you) for this incredible support.