On Tuesday, May 17, 2016, Steve Wadden, RBC’s Regional Vice President of Cape Breton and Eastern Nova Scotia will announce a donation of $500,000 over five years to the Purdy Crawford Chair in Aboriginal Business Studies at Cape Breton University. As part of a $5 million commitment from the 2013 Federal budget, for every dollar raised, the Federal Government of Canada will contribute one dollar in matching funds, bringing the total of this generous gift from RBC to $1 million.
In.Business: A National Mentorship Program for Indigenous Youth sees approximately 300 high school students per year engaged in its program from coast to coast to coast, across five regions of Canada. The program has representation from every province and territory in Canada and sees Aboriginal high school students from grades 10 -12 linked with Aboriginal business mentors, who are educated, working professionals with a background in business. Given the remoteness of some of the areas in which the students live, day-to-day connectivity is made possible through the use of social media. This allows students to interact in real-time with their mentors and other students while they complete their bi-weekly challenges that explore various business concepts. In.Business provides positive role models and support systems for Aboriginal youth, to bridge the gap between high school and post-secondary business education. This donation from RBC will be used to support the national project of In.Business and will include things such as social media connectivity, as well as opening and closing in-person conferences for each region.
“RBC believes in the importance of education and we feel deeply that it is key to improving the social and economic strength of Aboriginal people. We are simply thrilled to support a program renowned for being a leader in aboriginal education, the Purdy Crawford Chair’s national In.Business program,” says Wadden.
In attendance at today’s announcement will be 10 students from In.Business. These 10 students are the regional winners of the RBC National Challenge. The challenge was created by RBC, to introduce students to the world of finance and focuses on developing the marketing skills of students by having them participate through video. The challenges were judged on a variety of criteria and two students from each region were chosen to attend a national In.Business conference that was taking place this week in Cape Breton as their prize.
Joe Shannon, renowned Cape Breton businessman, namesake of CBU’s Shannon School of Business, and friend to the late Purdy Crawford notes, “Purdy Crawford would be so proud of the work that is being done by the Chair that bears his name, but more importantly the difference it is making in the lives of so many Aboriginal youth right across the country. I’m excited to see a national leader, like RBC, support the Chair with such a big commitment and really showcase the confidence they have in these youth.”
For more information on the In.Business: National Mentorship Program for Indigenous Youth visit: http://www.cbu.ca/indigenous-affairs/purdy-crawford-chair-in-aboriginal-business-studies/in-business/