The Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation logo

  • Home

Our Mission 

The mission of the Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation is to increase the number of Indigenous students graduating from pure and applied science, engineering, and mathematics programs in Canada. 

Who We Are

Picture of Verna J. Kirkness and two students talking in a lab. Everyone is wearing a lab coat and googles.

The Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation addresses the under-representation of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students at Canadian universities. One of the factors contributing to this is the lack of academic role models for Indigenous students.

The Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation Program develops motivated role models who foster the importance of graduating from high school and obtaining a postsecondary education. Our Foundation addresses this by offering scholarships to Indigenous students in grades 11 and 12 to spend a week at a Canadian university, interacting with scientists in their research laboratories. During the week of instruction on campus, students have the opportunity to meet role models, learn about the support systems available on campus and experience the excitement of doing research.


Hours Volunteered


Partner Institutions




University Mentors


University of Manitoba logo.
The University of British  Columbia logo.

University of Alberta logo.

University of Calgary logo.

University of Saskatchewan logo.

University of Victoria logo.
University of Ottawa logo.
Dalhousie University logo.
McGill University logo.
Queen's University logo.
Memorial University logo.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University logo.
First Nations University of Canada logo.


We are now accepting applications to our May 2023 program.



The Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation logo

Increasing the number of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students graduating from science and engineering programs in Canada. Charity Registration #822843629 RR 0001

Picture of student in a lab with a microscope behind them.

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 1681
Cochrane, AB T4C 1B6

Toll-Free: 1-888-647-1701

Office: (587) 814-0444

Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation Privacy Policy

Copyright 2022 Verna J. Kirkness Foundation, All Right Reserved 

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software