Queen’s University announced it will participate in a new financial program supporting Black and Indigenous student-athletes.
The program, the Black or Indigenous Heritage Student-Athlete (BIHS) Bursary, was recently announced by Ontario University Athletics (OUA) as a two-year pilot project intended to provide financial aid to collegiate student-athletes who identify as Black or Indigenous and need monetary support.
Coming into effect for the 2021-22 school year, participating universities—including Queen’s—will have $50,000 total to give out to individuals who meet the BIHS bursary’s criteria. Up to $2,000 can be given to individual athletes, whose eligibility for other bursaries offered by the university will not be affected by their reception of the BIHS bursary.
The OUA stated in a press release that the bursary’s development was due in part to continued recommendations made by their Black, Biracial, and Indigenous committee. The OUA projects that funding for the BIHS bursary could eventually “reach up to $1M annually across the OUA.”
In a press release announcing the university’s participation in the program, Athletics and Recreation (A&R) said the BIHS bursary is a welcome addition to the numerous existing financial supports that already exist for QTBIPOC students and student-athletes at Queen’s.
According to that same press release, through the Commitment Bursary Program “Queen’s awarded a total of $935,000 to 365 members of the class of 2025, including student-athletes who self-identify as Black, Indigenous, and other racialized students, persons with disabilities, and 2SLGBTQ+ individuals.”
In a statement to The Journal, A&R commented that “[t]he OUA bursary builds on Queen’songoing commitment to increasing access among underserved and underrepresented students, including QTBIPOC student-athletes.”
Athletics and Recreation also confirmed the availability of the BIHS Bursary for the 2021-22 academic year, and noted the details and processes regarding the bursary’s implementation will be released in the near future.
Students who fit the BIHS bursary’s criteria are encouraged to apply for the Queen’s General Bursary Program in the interim.
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