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2021/22 CNIB Scholarship Recipients

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CNIB received many remarkable scholarship applications this year and awarded $128,000 in funding to people who are blind or partially sighted in recognition of their educational and professional aspirations and achievements.

“We know that education drives employment outcomes for people who are blind or partially sighted and CNIB’s Scholarship program aims to help remove some of the financial barriers associated with pursuing education,” says April Assenza, Executive Business Partner and Lead, Operations and Special Events, CNIB. “Our scholarship program is diverse in scope as recipients can be pursuing any type of post-secondary education – whether that be a diploma, degree, skilled trades or apprenticeship certification, or continuing education courses. We’re pleased to announce that in 2021, 46 Canadians with sight loss received various scholarships, awards and bursaries through our scholarship program.”

Congratulations to the 2021/22 scholarship recipients and thank you to our generous donors who make this scholarship program possible. Their financial support will continue to help fuel the ambitions of students as they pursue their educational journeys. 

Barney Danson Scholarship 

Created in honour of Barney Danson, partially sighted veteran, MP, cabinet minister, consul general, businessperson and philanthropist, this scholarship honours students who have proven their dedication to success through academic, personal and charitable endeavours in spite of sight loss.

Recipient: Alexandra Dalcourt, N.B.

Ben McConnell Scholarship 

Started in memory of Ben McConnell, the scholarship is given to a student with sight loss from Alberta registered or accepted into any year of post-secondary program.

Recipient: Logan Farr, Alta.

CNIB Post-Secondary Scholarship Recipients

Awarded to students who are blind or partially sighted and who demonstrate amazing courage, determination and passion in fighting for their independence and future.

Hooriya Amjad, Alta.
Jill Baker, N.L.
Adam Brown, Ont.
Quinn Cepli, Alta.
Linus Chen, B.C.
Gabrielle Close, N.S.
Ethan Cook, Ont.
Gregory Doucet, Ont.
Jay Egbo, Ont.
Noah Feser, Alta.
Calvin Hendriks, Ont.
Laura Merica, Ont.
Megan Miller, Ont.
Owen Parkin, Ont.
Toan Phan, N.B.
Anton Sianchuk, N.B.
Abigail Sienko, B.C.
Connell Simkin-Watt, B.C.
Cory Strasbourg, Alta.
Joseph Zylak, Ont.

CNIB Master's Scholarship Recipients

Awarded to students who are blind or partially sighted and who are pursing post-graduate studies. 

Hussain Kadhem, Ont.
Melanie Marsden, N.S.
Elsa Parsons, B.C.
Marla Roth, Alta.

Dr. John and Olive Pyper Scholarship

Established by the family of Dr. John Pyper, a Stratford, Ont., ophthalmologist who extracted the first two human eyes donated to the Eye Bank of Canada in 1955. The scholarship is given to a student who is blind or partially sighted living in Southwestern Ontario (Perth, Wellington, Oxford, Middlesex and Huron counties).

Recipient: Darwish Chahbar, Ont.

Eric and Mary Davidson Memorial Award

Established in 2021, the award commemorates Eric Davidson – who lost his sight in the Halifax Explosion on December 6, 1917 – and his wife Mary Zinck Davidson, who was also blind. The couple embraced life with fortitude and humour and gave back to their communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. This award is available to an individual who requires financial assistance for tuition or to purchase a piece of technology or equipment (such as work boots, tools, etc.) for their education, an internship or employment. Applicants must be residents of Nova Scotia or Prince Edward Island.

Gabrielle Close, N.S.
Glenda Stewart, N.S.

eSight Award

As part of the CNIB scholarship program, eSight awards one student, who would benefit from eSight eyewear, with a device. eSight is a life-changing device that enhances functional vision. eSight users typically live with serious eye conditions such as macular degeneration, Stargardt’s disease, diabetic retinopathy, optic nerve hypoplasia and more.

Recipient: Jaclyn Pope, Ont.

FJL Woodcock SAPA Scholarships 

Established in 1989 in honour of Capt. Fred Woodcock, a WWII war-blinded veteran. Families of veterans blinded in WWI, WWII and the Korean War donated to encourage students with sight loss to pursue post-secondary education and training.

Eric Albright, B.C.
Roxane Sophie David, N.B.
Eitel Houedakor, Que.
Bilal Issak, Alta.
Grant Johnson, B.C.
Summer Phillips, Ont.
Kalilou Sy Savané, Que.
Ella Yu, B.C.

The Joyce Family Foundation Bursary

Bursaries awarded to young Canadian students pursuing undergraduate studies. Recipients must demonstrate financial need and resilience to overcome barriers.

Nour Al Ali, Ont.
Olivia Chippett, Ont.
Brandon Joy, N.L.
William Li, Alta.
Mya Lieb, N.L.
Cerenna-tee Racey, Ont.

Nalini Perera Little Lotus Bud Master’s Scholarship 

This scholarship aims to enable a student to pursue a master’s degree at a Canadian university, while acquiring knowledge, skills and experience through field research to be able to transition to a career-furthering paid internship. Nalini Perera obtained an intermediate certificate from the Royal Institute of British Architects, a B.A. in architecture and planning and a M.A. in international relations. She is a classical piano gold medalist and was awarded paid internships to the mayor’s office in Manhattan and United Nations in New York. In mid-career, she developed glaucoma and became legally blind. Her 37-year career with the Canadian federal government included international travel.

Recipient: Danica Frappier, Ont.

The Sappani Foundation Ela Award 

The Sappani Foundation strives to inspire, educate, and empower, believing that education has the single largest impact in our ability to transform lives of people from impoverished and marginalized communities. This is the essence of their $5000 annual scholarship, the ‘Ela Award’, to support post-secondary education for children (primarily girls) who have sight loss, and are from the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person of Colour) population.

Recipient: Hodan Ahmed, Ont.

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