Attention assignment editors: UBC President Santa J. Ono is available for interviews about the Blue & Gold Campaign for Students today at 12 p.m. at the Nest, 6133 University Blvd.
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UBC is embarking on the largest fundraising campaign for students in its 102-year history. The Blue & Gold Campaign for Students aims to raise $100 million over three years to give promising students access to a life-changing education.
“Our students are our future and we want to attract the brightest to UBC, one of the world’s top public universities,” said UBC President Santa J. Ono. “Each student is uniquely talented, but not all have the same opportunities. We hope to inspire people to give generously to this campaign to empower our students to better our communities and our world.”
The Blue & Gold Campaign for Students will support a range of student awards, including fellowships, scholarships, bursaries, and experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students at the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses. The awards will support students in need, students from under-represented communities, and leadership-based awards.
Regan Oey, a recipient of a UBC Centennial Leaders Award and now a second-year student studying cognitive systems, is one student who is benefitting from a UBC award.
“I watched my mom work really hard as a single parent. I didn’t get to see her a lot. I went to high school in Vancouver, but I wasn’t sure if university was even an option for me,” said Oey. “This award has given me the opportunity to go to school and pursue things I’m really passionate about.”
Haley Seven Deers, a third-year history and anthropology student at UBC Okanagan, is another.
“These awards are truly life-changing for students,” said Seven Deers, who received a UBC Okanagan Aboriginal Entrance Award. “Every bit, no matter how small or large that you donate is going to have a huge impact on people’s lives. And not just on the students, but on all the people they will affect later in their careers. It’s such a beautiful thing that has such a far-reaching impact within society.”
UBC is providing matching funds of up to $5 million for new endowed donations to select Blue & Gold campaign priorities, which include bursaries and renewable entrance awards for students with high academic standing, known as Presidential Scholars, as well as for outstanding students recognized for their achievement and leadership who demonstrate financial need.
The campaign will also focus on the graduate student experience including fellowships, experiential learning opportunities, and the opportunity for graduate students to pursue their research in collaboration with community partners and organizations to provide real-life applications for public benefit.
“The student awards that I have received have really helped me to focus my time and energy on engaging with communities in a meaningful way and also to focus on field work,” said Kelsey Copes-Gerbitz, a graduate student who studies wildfires. “My dream for the future is to help enable communities to co-exist with wildfire. Fire isn’t going away, but we can be proactive about making people and landscapes more resilient to fire in the long-term.”
For information about the Blue & Gold Campaign for Students, visit: support.ubc.ca/blueandgold