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RBC announces 2023 Future Launch Black Youth Scholarship recipients

Twenty young people from across Canada will receive financial support and mentorship from RBC and community partners to further their postsecondary education and prepare for the future of work


RBC Foundation announced the 2023 cohort of RBC Future Launch Black Youth Scholarship recipients. This scholarship, awarded to Black students aged 15-29, provides up to $10,000 annually for up to four years, as well as access to mentorship and support services to serve the unique needs of young Black Canadians navigating their education and preparing for the future of work.

According to Statistics Canada data, 94 per cent of young Black students wanted to obtain postsecondary education, but only 60 per cent thought it was a possibility for them. The Future Launch Black Youth Scholarships,  part of RBC’s Action Plan Against Systemic Racism, will provide $50 million in focused funding to create meaningful and transformative pathways to prosperity for up to 25,000 BIPOC youth by 2025, with investments in areas such as skills development and mentoring.

“There is a dire need for early and ongoing resources that are thoughtfully designed to support the unique needs of young Black scholars,” said Mark Beckles, Vice-President, Social Impact & Innovation at RBC. “Our investment in Black youth through the RBC Future Launch Scholarships demonstrates our commitment to their future prosperity while recognizing the unique experiences they have and will continue to experience throughout their education journey.”

The scholarship is available to Black youth (15-29) who are Canadian citizens, permanent residents or refugees entering grade 11 or 12, or who are enrolled in postsecondary education for the 2023-2024 academic year. Eligible students are nominated by one of 15 participating community partners and evaluated by a selection committee comprised of Black leaders from academic, business, and non-profit backgrounds.  Community partner organizations will also provide mentorship, academic and career planning, tutoring, internship opportunities and networking resources tailored to the needs of each recipient. 

The scholarship will support Arshi Chadha, who plans to study film at the School for the Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University, to pay for things that many young people take for granted, like tuition and living expenses. “A university education will connect me with other writers and filmmakers; mentorship to help me develop and navigate my career path. Through my film practice, I create a universe where Black people and communities are given agency. My goal is to make the world better through my art and that of others.”

Launched in 2022, the Future Launch Black Youth scholarship was informed by an advisory committee of Black academics, business and youth-serving leaders who provided their insights and drew upon their lived experiences to build a powerful scholarship experience that goes beyond funding. It is administered by Universities Canada, a national leader in scholarship management.

“The RBC Future Launch Scholarship for Black Youth is an incredible opportunity for some of the most deserving and underserved learners in our country,” says Markiel Simpson, spokesperson for the BC Community Alliance. “Not only will this scholarship provide opportunities for young people who otherwise may never be able to attend postsecondary, the legacies recipients are motivated to create will generate long lasting effects on their communities, and have far-reaching impacts beyond anything we might imagine today.”

To view the complete list of scholarship recipients, and to learn more visit:

To read more about the resiliency required for Black Canadians to attend postsecondary education on RBC Stories. 

About RBC

Royal Bank of Canada is a global financial institution with a purpose-driven, principles-led approach to delivering leading performance. Our success comes from the 95,000+ employees who leverage their imaginations and insights to bring our vision, values and strategy to life so we can help our clients thrive and communities prosper. As Canada’s biggest bank and one of the largest in the world, based on market capitalization, we have a diversified business model with a focus on innovation and providing exceptional experiences to our 17 million clients in Canada, the U.S. and 27 other countries. Learn more at

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