By Bev Betkowski, ExpressNews Staff
A future Aboriginal doctor, a dentist and a lawyer are among the first recipients of a $2 million endowment fund for Métis students at the University of Alberta.
A total of $100,000 has been awarded to 13 students in the first round of scholarships from the Métis Endowment Fund, which was announced in 2008 to give financial assistance to Métis students attending the U of A.
Danielle Fostey of St. Paul plans to complete her sociology degree this year at Augustana Campus with the help of her $5,000 scholarship, and then attend law school. "It took me by surprise! I am very honoured to be one of the first recipients of this endowment. I’ll be using the scholarship to pay for tuition this year."
After following her mother’s divorce proceedings through the courts, Fostey decided to practice family and/or criminal law to give Aboriginal people-women in particular-a voice in the justice system, and to bring changes to the system itself.
The Métis Endowment Fund was created through a $2-million contribution from the Métis Nation of Alberta, to be matched by the U of A over time, eventually growing to $4 million. This year’s recipients received scholarships worth $20,000, $10,000 and $5,000.
"I would like to thank the Métis Nation of Alberta for their support and recognition, and I hope that this award opens the door for other Métis students on campus. Just because we’re from a small campus doesn’t mean we don’t have access to these great opportunities."