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The Opportunity Fund

Awards and Financial Aid


The Opportunity Fund was created in 2007 by The University of Winnipeg to help make it possible for inner-city youth to dream big. Unique among universities in Canada, the goal is to build a $10 million bursary fund that will help ensure access to higher learning, bridge the graduation gap, and transform lives through education. Since 2007, we are proud to report that we have awarded over $2.4 million in assistance to over 2,270 students!

Fast-Track Bursary Program

The first element of The Opportunity Fund is a bursary program designed to help youth and adult learners who have financial need and are from under-represented student populations. The bursaries are intended to assist students with their direct education costs (tuition and books), and are based on the individual financial need of the applicant. This program has seen almost 240 recipients graduate with their university degrees.

Eligibility: You may be eligible for this bursary program if you meet the following criteria:

  • Have at least a 2.00 (C) grade point average, or a 65% admission average
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Belong to a population currently under-represented at The University of Winnipeg such as recent immigrants or refugees, Aboriginal students or inner-city students.

Deadline: Mid-September each year

Tuition Credit Program

Tuition Credits allow you to “earn as you learn”. Students as early as Grade 4 can begin to earn their tuition by staying in school, maintaining good grades, graduating and participating in their community. By the time you earn a high school diploma, the support will be there to help cover your tuition costs at The University of Winnipeg.

Value: Tuition credits are deferred awards. Depending on your activities in Grade 4-12, you could potentially earn an award of up to $4,000 towards your post-secondary education. Here is how it works:

Grades 4 through 8:

  • $150 for each school year completed
  • $50 for extra-curricular activities

Grades 9 through 12:

  • $500 for each school year completed
  • $150 if you get a 70% average or better
  • $100 for extra-curricular activities.

Eligibility: To be enrolled in this pilot program, you must be actively involved in one of the following programs:

  • The University of Winnipeg Science-Kids on Campus
  • Inner City Junior Wesmen Basketball team
  • Model School at The University of Winnipeg Collegiate

Youth-in-Care Tuition Waivers

The University of Winnipeg is committed to breaking down the barriers to university education for Youth in Care. The Youth-In-Care Tuition Waiver Program is a part of the Opportunity Fund, and it is intended to cover undergraduate tuition fees. Tuition Waivers are based on the individual financial need of the applicant and will be selected by the Awards and Financial Aid Office in partnership with the Child and Family Service Authorities and the Province of Manitoba. 

Eligibility: You may be eligible for this tuition waiver if you meet the following criteria:

  • Have been given an offer of admission to the University for the upcoming Fall
  • Over the age of 18 or turning 18 in the 2016-2017 academic year
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Enroll in a minimum of 9 credit hours per term (in Fall and Winter) in your first year
  • Completion of an Authorization for the Release of Information form allowing the University and the Authority/Province to share information on your progress
  • Maintain continued contact with the University and Authority/Province officials satisfactory to facilitate monitoring and administration of the Program.

How To Apply:  In order to be considered for this program, please contact the Authority listed below that is most appropriate to you. Each Authority will nominate candidates in their area (May of every year) and forward them to the University for final selection. Notification if you have been selected for the program will take place after interviews are conducted and once final high school grades are received (June/July).

First Nations of Northern Manitoba Child and Family Services
Candace Donaldson, Foster Care Recruitment Coordinator
phone: 1.204.942.1842
email: candaced@northernauthority.ca

General Child and Family Services Authority
Jennifer Fallis, Program Specialist
phone: 204.984.9283
email: jennifer.fallis@gov.mb.ca

Metis Child and Family Services
Dianna Cadotte, Service Specialist
phone: 204.949.0220
email: dcadotte@metisauthority.com

Southern First Nations Network of Care
Michelle Lemoine
phone: 204.783.9190
email: michelle.lemoine@southernnetwork.org