TORONTO, ON — In Winnipeg, high school students don medical scrubs and gain hands on experience in local hospitals and healthcare centres, preparing them to pursue further education in medical careers.
They’re part of the Medical Careers Exploration Program (MCEP), an innovative program for Indigenous youth designed to promote healthcare careers and the post-secondary education required to get there. Students are introduced to the diversity of healthcare careers through on-site practicums, specialized curriculum in anatomy and physiology, and mentorships. Delivered by the Pan Am Clinic Foundation, in partnership with the Winnipeg School Division, and numerous healthcare partners, the program aims to address the lack of Indigenous representation in Canadian healthcare.
“We are so grateful for the CST Inspired Minds Learning Project funding, as it will help us purchase a full set of scrubs and other material for each student in the program,” said Alex Carroll, Program Coordinator with the Pan Am Clinic Foundation. “Beyond being a requirement of the on-site practicums, this really gives the students a strong sense of pride as they gain experience in different health care locations throughout the city.”
Meanwhile, in Chilliwack, B.C., students at the Sardis Secondary School Farm learn about sustainable horticulture in preparation for post-secondary training and employment. The Farm provides programming for elementary classes, middle school students, and high school students. Participants explore career possibilities in agriculture through a series of farm- and field-based experiences and specialized courses in pest management, crop planning, the business of agriculture, forestry, and food production.
These are just two of the thirty-five community-focused organizations across Canada that have received funding from this year’s CST Inspired Minds Learning Project. Through the CST Inspired Minds Learning Project, Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation supports academic upskilling and engagement activities for lower-income Canadian students from kindergarten to grade twelve. Academic upskilling and engagement programs help children obtain the necessary grades, skills, and self-confidence to succeed in school, ensuring that they are prepared to pursue post-secondary education.
CST Foundation marks a milestone this year, having awarded over $1 million through the CST Inspired Minds Learning project since 2014. Thirty-five organizations from across the country received a total of $167,535 in funding this year.
CST Foundation Vice President Peter Lewis says he’s proud of the Foundation’s work in supporting access to post-secondary education:
“Each year we invite community organizations from across Canada to apply for the Inspired Minds Learning Project and I’m always impressed by the innovative and meaningful programs that address the needs of Canada’s diverse communities. This year is no different as we recognize those organizations that see the value and promise of post-secondary education.”
The CST Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to helping Canadian families access post-secondary education. For over 60 years, CST has been delivering on its mission through its advocacy and philanthropy initiatives as well as two wholly owned subsidiaries, CST Savings Inc. and CST Spark Inc. CST has helped over 800,000 students achieve their post-secondary dreams. For further information on CST’s mission, visit cstfoundation.ca.