RBC continues to build on their support for Indigenous students at Langara with a donation of $100,000 towards the College’s Gathering Space and their student support programs.

Back in March 2020, Langara’s 300 Indigenous students were among 2.12 million students across Canada who made the shift to online learning. The move online eliminated access to the Gathering Space, a safe space on campus for Indigenous students, resulting in a stressful learning experience and a reduced sense of community. The online programs address these urgent needs through three areas:

  • A Learning Strategist program to provide Indigenous learners with one-on-one support to develop their organizational and study skills in a post-secondary environment. The strategist supports students through weekly meetings and develops individualized learning programs to help them achieve their academic goals.
  • The laptop borrowing program to address a lack of access to computers. This pilot project has made laptops available for loan on a short-term or long-term basis.
  • An online career readiness course supplemented with one-on-one support. The program’s seven learning modules, delivered over seven weeks, can be completed at a student’s own pace and within one semester. 

Learning Strategist, Jamilee Baroud, said: “When I step into my (currently virtual) office each day, I know that all my students can succeed. This belief shapes how I teach and engage with my students and how my students engage in their academics. When their confidence about their academic potential increases, it pushes them beyond the limits of their imagination and pulls their potential to the next level.” Read more about Jamilee’s story.

The $100,000 funding provided by the RBC Foundation will support virtual help, learning tools, and access to technology for online learning. It provides Indigenous students with the opportunity to work with a learning strategist to build long-term and sustainable study habits, improve communication, time management, and build on soft skills that could effectively reduce the impacts of school-related stresses. 

Langara is delighted to continue working with RBC on meaningful initiatives like this one. “Empowering young people to stay future ready starts with coming together — to share stories, advice, ideas, and to learn from each other,” says Tara Brown, Community Manager, RBC. “In our current reality, doing this in a physical setting has become impossible, while the need to connect has become even greater. Through our partnership with Langara, the Indigenous Gathering Space program has continued to pivot and adapt programming and resources to this new normal.”