Scholarship Selection Process
Based on Four Selection Criteria: The basic process for evaluating applicants and awarding scholarships is as follows
STEP 1: Three Standard Selection Criteria: All applicants are evaluated by at least three judges based on the following three standard criteria:
- i) High Academic Achievement: This is based on your academic transcript, and by testimony to your scholarly excellence that is provided by a letter of recommendation by a teacher.
- ii) Financial Need: This is based on the financial information that is furnished in Section E of your Application, by information provided by your letters of recommendation, plus any reinforcing narrative you provide in your essay.
- iii) Recognized Contribution to the Black Community: This is based on information presented in Section F of your application, by information provided by your letters of recommendation, by your resume, plus any reinforcing narrative you provide in your essay.
STEP 2: A Fourth Criterion Which is Donor Determined: Step 2 applies the fourth selection criterion which is unique criteria determined by donors. These unique criteria may include (i) enrolment in a particular field of study, (ii) personal attributes and achievements such as leadership, (iii) special community service or volunteerism, (iv) overcoming certain life challenges, (v) residence in a specific geographic area, or (vi) other distinctions. Many donors do not specify unique criteria. Descriptions of scholarships in the BBPA NSF website provide guidance regarding donor determined unique criteria. Here are some examples of unique donor-driven selection criteria:
- The TD Financial Group Scholarships require recipients to be enrolled in business and be available to intern at the bank during summers.
- The Dr. Anderson Abbot Scholarship requires enrolment at the University of Toronto.
- The Dentons Canada LLP Scholarship requires enrolment in law.
- The Cadillac Excellence in Marketing and Communication requires the recipient to be enrolled in marketing or communication.
- The Madeline Blackman Scholarship requires the recipient to have heritage links to Antigua and Barbuda. Express this in your essay and support letters.
- Currently being finalized are new scholarships targeted at recipients who reside in facilities/areas operated by Toronto Community Housing Corporation (TCHC). Express this in your essay and support letters.
STEP 3: Decision Making: Using information gathered in Steps 1 and 2, the judges, most of whom are current or former educators/administrators from post-secondary institutions, will determine which candidates should be assigned specific scholarships. Donors who request participation in the final decision for their particular scholarship are party to the decision.
STEP 4: Conditional Offers of Scholarships: Candidates selected in Step 3 will be emailed conditional offers of scholarships (by August 27, 2017). They will be asked to provide additional information (e.g. validation of enrolment in the 2017-18 academic year, etc.) by a given deadline. Should they respond in a timely way with the requested information, the conditions will be removed and they will be awarded a scholarship.
STEP 5 Confirmation of 2017 Scholarship: With all conditions met, scholarship recipients will be officially advised by email of their award. As a courtesy, applicants who are unsuccessful in the 2017 scholarship program will be notified by email.
STEP 6 Scholarship Awards Ceremony: This ceremony is scheduled for the first week of October and will be located at York University, Toronto. All scholarship recipients and their families and friends will be invited. An applicant’s inability to attend the awards ceremony in person will not impact on his/her eligibility for a scholarship.
QUESTION 1: WILL I BE CONSIDERED FOR ALL SCHOLARSHIPS? A1: The application form does not ask that you target your candidacy to a specific scholarship. This is because the judges will assess your application against scholarships with donor determined criteria. Where you fulfil specified donor criteria you will be evaluated for those scholarships plus you will be considered for all other scholarships which do not have specific donor criteria. Consider the following example. Should you be enrolled in the study of music, (i) you will be considered a candidate for The James Massey Music Scholarship, (ii) you will not be considered a candidate for scholarships requiring studies in law, business, science or other donor requirements you do not possess, and (iii) you will be considered for all other scholarships. In the end, all applicants will be considered for many scholarships.
QUESTION 2: WHO SHOULD I CONTACT FOR HELP WITH MY APPLICATION? A2: To ensure you do your best work in preparing your application, we recommend that you consult all the resources available to you. If in high school, consult your parents, your guidance counsellor, a community mentor and/or any teacher who has been particularly supportive of your development. The same may be said if you are currently in a college/university, but additionally, you may consult staff in your institution’s financial aid and awards office or a person familiar with you school work or employment record.