THUNDER BAY, ON – 354 Confederation College students received 454 scholarships, bursaries and awards totalling $190,255 at the annual Awards Recognition Reception.
Confederation College students were recognized for their academic achievement and community involvement. In addition, the event provided an opportunity for students and the College community to thank donors for their continued support.
“A scholarship received at a time of need is so very welcoming,” said Jodi Connor, Student Union President. “Students are thankful for the help they receive through these awards, bursaries and scholarships as it is often that financial support that provides them with the opportunity to attend college or to stay in school when unexpected expenses arise. Our donors are not only gifting their dollars, but also gifting hope and encouragement for students.”
One such student, Christine Battle, echoed that finances are at the top of her list of concerns while attending school. She made the decision to take a leave from full-time employment to enroll in the Recreation Therapy program.
“My journey has been about as far out of my comfort zone as possible and I’ll admit, I was a bit reluctant to do it,” she said. “Taking a leave from my job, the most amazing thing happened – I began to live! Letting go of the security of full-time work wasn’t easy and these awards help to remove the financial stress, which is my biggest barrier. These awards are a breath of fresh air for myself and for other students. Thank you to all the donors who support students like me to succeed.”
Battle is the recipient of the Student Union of Confederation College Inc. and Derek and Joan Burney awards.
Jim Madder, President of Confederation College, shared his words of thanks on behalf of the College. “Our donors continue to contribute important dollars towards scholarships, bursaries and awards, all of which enable our students to focus on their studies and ultimately, to achieve their dreams. Beyond the funds they commit, our donors act as role models for our students, demonstrating the value of leadership and community. We are grateful for their philanthropic spirits and generosity.”
Strong financial support and community relationships are paramount to the success of the scholarship, bursary and awards program at Confederation College. The generous contributions from donors help to ensure that students who require financial assistance can put their dreams to work and get the support they need.
The family of Dean Pecchia established an award in his memory after he passed away last year. His brother Tony and sister Adelina were on hand to present their family’s award and to share why they choose to support Confederation students.
“Dean never stopped loving life and refused to give up hope after a motor vehicle accident left him unable to walk or talk as a quadriplegic at the age of 6,” said Tony Pecchia. “Dean had a way of communicating love and understanding, even though he could not verbally speak a word. He had an infectious laugh and smile. Our family created this scholarship to help someone who is just like him. Someone with a similar love for life, and the persistence and courage to show everyone that having a ‘disability’ is not a disability at all.”
Adding this year’s amounts to those of the past seven years, with the help of these donors, Confederation College has been able to deliver awards to over 2,300 students, totaling more than $1.3 million.