North Island College celebrates expansion of Aboriginal Scholars program

North Island College is marking a successful first term of a newly expanded program to provide support to Indigenous learners at all four college campuses.

The Aboriginal Scholars program is a culturally relevant, holistic program that began as a pilot project at the Comox Valley campus. Based on the concept of the medicine wheel, the Aboriginal Scholars program aims to help students find balance in all aspects of their lives.

The program was expanded to all campuses this fall, thanks to a $50,000 donation from RBC and the RBC Foundation. The expanded program saw a huge response from students.

“It was incredible to see the number of students wanting to be part of the program,” said Sarah Lawrence, NIC Aboriginal education advisor and program coordinator. “It’s been an inspiring first term and we’re hoping to continue that into the winter semester.”

Students work with an Aboriginal educational advisor to create an achievement plan, based on their individual needs. The goals can be academic, spiritual, emotional and physical.

The students work with their advisor throughout the term to keep on track and also access services and supports that will help them achieve their goals.

“It’s about helping students gain the skills they need to be successful,” said Lawrence.

NIC business administration student Chris Scarlatti is one of the students taking part in the Aboriginal Scholars program this year.

“NIC’s Aboriginal Scholar program has provided me connections to a wide variety of supports and services that I would not have known existed,” said Scarlatti. “Sarah has pushed me to take on new challenges, both on campus and off. Having made these new connections, I am now a student leader and honing my business skills on the Education Council, Planning and Standards Committee and Curriculum Committee. Without NIC’s Aboriginal Scholar program, none of this would have been possible.”

The program will run again through the winter term at NIC campuses in Campbell River, Comox Valley, Port Alberni and Port Hardy. Students can apply for one term or the entire year. At the end of each term, successful students will earn a $250 scholarship.

“Success is defined very broadly, since the goals are specific to each student,” said Lawrence. “It’s really about helping students succeed now and setting them up for success in the future, both academically and throughout their lives.”

Interested students can contact Sarah at sarah.lawrence@nic.bc.ca.

For more information on NIC’s Aboriginal Education programs and courses, visit www.nic.bc.ca/aboriginal-education.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Black Lives Matter events attract strong turnout in Comox Valley

People knelt for nine minutes at noon on Saturday to remember George Floyd

Cumberland looks at July for village hall meeting

Village council had to cancel meeting set for June 1 due to pandemic guidelines

Comox Valley board of education approves facility spending plan

Projects include roofing, sewage system upgrade, gym resurfacing

Vancouver Island’s current COVID-19 case count officially hits zero

Of the 130 recorded Island Health cases, five people have died, 125 recovered

Valley artist gifts B.C.’s health officer with symbolic hummingbird

A special connection brought the piece to Dr. Bonnie Henry’s desk in Victoria

Trudeau offers $14B to provinces for anti-COVID-19 efforts through rest of year

Making a difference in municipalities is a pricey proposition

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Friends, family mourn Salt Spring Island woman killed in suspected murder-suicide

A GoFundMe comapaign has been launched for Jennifer Quesnel’s three sons

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Indigenous families say their loved ones’ deaths in custody are part of pattern

Nora Martin joins other Indigenous families in calling for a significant shift in policing

‘Alarmed’: Health critic calls for more data on COVID-19 in trucking industry

Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec said that level of detail is not being collected

UPDATED: Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park arrested

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Most Read