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Fostering Futures: Northern Sunrise County Introduces Bursary Program

Northern Sunrise County (NSC) has a vibrant youth community. However, like other rural municipalities, they are faced with a similar challenge: many talented and ambitious young people leave the region in search of opportunities elsewhere.

“We often hear of students moving away and not returning, which affects future economic development within the region. We aspire to see students live and be successful here in Northern Alberta with their chosen careers,” said Northern Sunrise County Reeve Corinna Williams.

Determined to reverse this trend, NSC has partnered with the Northwest Alberta Foundation (NAF) and the Northern Alberta Development Council (NADC) to provide an innovative program of bursaries.

The goals are to nurture local talent, foster a sense of belonging within the County’s borders and support young residents in pursuing their academic dreams.

“We want to invest in the future of Northern Alberta by sponsoring a return of service bursary for post-secondary students,” said Reeve Williams. “This program aims to address gaps in the workforce; limit shortages we see for trades, agriculture, medical and specialized industries; support local residents; and foster economic development here.”

The bursaries through NAF provide two scholarships of $2,500 per year for two-year college programs as well as three scholarships of $1,000 per year for apprenticeship programs that are six weeks or longer. The bursaries through NADC provide two scholarships at $7,000 per year for four-year university programs.

These bursaries are available to residents of Northern Sunrise County and the Village of Nampa. Applications for the bursaries through NAF will be accepted until mid-July, and applications for the NADC bursaries will be accepted until August 15.

“This is a great opportunity to receive grant funding for post-secondary education, especially with the rising costs of education, books and tools,” said Williams. “We look forward to hearing how these bursaries have helped and learn what can be done to improve the outcomes or the process.”

In addition, this summer NSC will be sponsoring a Northern Lakes College power engineer trades camp, which will be hosted in Peace River.

To learn more about NSC’s bursary program criteria and how to apply, visit their website,

By Dani Wearden | Photography by Frances Borger and A. Smith

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