RBC Black History Month Scholarship


Every year Canadians are invited to participate in Black History Month festivities and events that honour the legacy of black Canadians, past and present.

RBC Royal Bank® takes this time to celebrate the many achievements and contributions of black Canadians, who, throughout history, have done so much to make Canada the culturally diverse and prosperous nation we are today. During Black History Month, Canadians can gain insight into the experiences of black Canadians and the vital role this community has played throughout our shared history.

High school students from Toronto who are planning to attend a college or university in Canada are eligible for this competition.

A total of 20 scholarships are awarded. Seventeen $500 scholarships, and three grand prizes. First place: $5,000; second place: $2,500; third place: $1,500. The essay consists of writing in 750 words or less about how black Canadians have contributed toward the heritage of Canada. The essay can include discussion about the achievements of Black Canadians. Essays will be judged by content, organization of thoughts, spelling, grammar and punctuation.

RBC was founded in 1869 and is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. They are a leading financial services company in North America. In addition, they are dedicated to providing programs that improve the lives of children and youth.


The deadline for this scholarship is usually in DECEMBER of each year.

For more details, visit www.rbc.com/essay/.

To download the RBC Scholarship rules and wavier form, click here.



February 6, 2015

RBC announces Black History Month Student Essay Competition scholarship winners

As the cost of tuition continues to rise, scholarships are helping students to offset some of those costs. Today, twenty deserving high school students were awarded scholarships from RBC for their essays on how black Canadians have helped to define Canada’s diverse heritage and identity. The winning submissions were chosen from a record-number of entries from across the country, including the three top scholarship winners:

  • $5,000: Emma Cohen, Waterloo Collegiate Institute (Waterloo, Ont.), who wrote about a pair of storytellers who have made an indelible mark on society – generations apart – and inspired her to be the best she can be.

  • $2,500: Preston Simmons, Auburn Drive High School (East Preston, N.S.), who wrote about the power of music as a means of inciting societal change.

  • $1,500: Emmett Bisbee, Barrie Central Collegiate (Barrie, Ont.), who wrote about Lincoln Alexander’s extensive political contributions to Canada.

Winners were selected by a panel of esteemed community leaders, including Dr. Catherine Chandler-Crichlow, Executive Director, Centre of Excellence in Financial Services Education.

“Recognizing the contributions of black Canadians is very important, and all the students did so with great skill and passion,” said Dr. Chandler-Crichlow. “Every applicant should be proud of the work they’ve done.”

Other winners, receiving a $500 scholarship from the RBC Foundation, are:

  • Zoe MacEachern (Cole Harbour, N.S.)

  • Sebastian Baretto (Burnaby, B.C.)

  • Rebecca Conrod (Ottawa, Ont.)

  • Victor Lal (Toronto, Ont.)

  • Estelle Annan (Vaughan, Ont.)

  • Grace Likungu (Ajax, Ont.)

  • Charles Tillman (St. Catharines, Ont.)

  • Sajine Sathiesalen (Markham, Ont.)

  • Nour Hanafi (Milton, Ont.)

  • Adam Gronowski (Sarnia, Ont.)

  • Mirabelle Harris-Eze (Calgary, Alta.)

  • Emily Gray (Norton, N.B.)

  • Ruby-Anne Fines (Brookside, N.S.)

  • Hassan Abdulrahman (Barrie, Ont.)

  • Grace Delevante (Ottawa, Ont.)

  • Conor Hubley (Tantallon, N.S.)

  • Karina Pelletier (Toronto, Ont.).

"The history of African Canadians is so essential to the Canadian narrative and an integral part of the broader Canadian story," said Kim Mason, RBC regional president for Greater Toronto. "These students have done a wonderful job of honouring that rich national heritage."

Each Friday in February, you can read five of the top essays at rbc.com/essay, including the three top scholarship winning essays on February 27.

RBC’s scholarship programs are part of our RBC Kid’s Pledge, our five year, $100 million commitment to kids and youth.

ABOUT RBC Royal Bank of Canada is Canada’s largest bank, and one of the largest banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We are one of North America’s leading diversified financial services companies, and provide personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance, investor services and capital markets products and services on a global basis. We employ approximately 78,000 full- and part-time employees who serve more than 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 38 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com. RBC supports a broad range of community initiatives through donations, sponsorships and employee volunteer activities. In 2014, we contributed more than $111 million to causes worldwide, including donations and community investments of more than $76 million and $35 million in sponsorships. 

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