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RBC announces 2013 Aboriginal Student Awards Program recipients

TORONTO, September 20, 2013 – RBC today announced its 2013 RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program recipients. Ten Aboriginal students will receive scholarships to offset the costs of post-secondary tuition, textbooks, supplies and living expenses during the academic year.

Committed to supporting Aboriginal youth in their education journey, RBC will award each recipient with up to $4,000 annually, for a maximum of four years, to help ease the financial strain students often face when pursuing post-secondary education.

“Aboriginal youth continue to represent one of the fastest-growing segments of the Canadian population, yet statistically they have a lower level of education than other Canadians,” said Chinyere Eni, national director, Aboriginal Markets, RBC. “Scholarships like this can support a student’s post-secondary success by alleviating some of the financial pressures that can get in the way of educational goals.”

While education remains a critical component to improving the social and economic strength of Aboriginal communities, financial barriers continue to deter Aboriginal youth from going to university or college. With the right resources, they can achieve their career aspirations and give back to their community.

Since the RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program was launched in 1992, over $1.3 million dollars has been awarded to 128 First Nations, Inuit and Métis youth across Canada pursuing post-secondary education. RBC also considers scholarship recipients who are interested in careers in financial services for summer and post-graduate employment.

2013 winners of the RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program (in alphabetical order):

  • Elizabeth Brockman, Saskatoon, SK (Métis Nation-Saskatchewan)
    University of Victoria – Bachelor of Science
  • Stephanie Cleveland, Winnipeg, MB (Manitoba Métis Federation)
    Brandon University – Psychiatric Nursing
  • Katrina Hewton-Backfat, Calgary, AB (Siksika Nation)
    Athabasca University – Bachelor of Arts, Psychology
  • Jordan Jones, Kamloops, BC (NunatuKavut)
    Dalhousie University – Bachelor of Environmental Design Studies
  • Tyler Markowski, Morinville, AB (Métis Nation of Alberta)
    University of Alberta – Chemical Engineering
  • Dalton Reany, Port Elgin, ON (Chippewas of Nawash First Nation)
    University of Toronto – Rotman Commerce
  • Deanna Smith, Inuvik, NT (Nihtat Gwich’in)
    Northern Alberta Institute of Technology – Business Administration
  • Alexander Thomas, Wolfville, NS (Snuneymuxw First Nation)
    Acadia University – Bachelor of Science in Math and Economics
  • Toni Warrior, Edmonton, AB (Piikanii Nation)
    University of Alberta – Major in Math, Minor in Physical Education
  • Krista Zawadski, Rankin Inlet, NU (Rankin Inlet)
    University of British Columbia – Anthropology, Archaeology and Museum Studies

Applications for the 2014 RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program will be accepted from December 1, 2013 to February 28, 2014. Eligibility criteria and more information can be found

About RBC and Aboriginal Canadians
RBC has a proud history of strong relationships with Aboriginal peoples. For more than 100 years, RBC has helped strengthen First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities across Canada. We are committed to serving Aboriginal governments, communities, organizations, businesses and individuals by creating opportunities for sustainable economic development through: access to banking and capital; community and social development; employment, education and training; and procurement. RBC also provides donations and grants that support Aboriginal interests in three key areas: the environment, specifically water; youth literacy and education; and culture and heritage. For more information about these programs and more, visit and click on “A Chosen Journey Annual: RBC Aboriginal Partnership Report”.

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For more information, please contact:
Angela Harkey, RBC Communications, 416 313-5001
Kate Yurincich, RBC Communications, 416 974-1031

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