The Wilfrid Laurier University Alumni Association (WLUAA) has donated $800,000 to enhance student wellness and success initiatives at Laurier.
The gift, which was announced at Laurier’s Homecoming on Sept. 28, will provide critical funding for four areas of student life, including: student scholarships and bursaries, gendered and sexual violence counselling and support programs, the Nadjiwan Kaandossiwin Gamik Indigenous Student Centre, and the makerspaces program.
“As a board, we prioritize funding initiatives that are going to drive permanent, lasting change on campus, and make each student’s time at Laurier more rewarding and fulfilling,” said Ryan Smith (BBA ’98), president of WLUAA. “Our hope is to be able to look back at how Laurier has evolved 10 years from now and be able to say that we were part of making it happen.”
The association’s donation will be divided as follows:
• $350,000 to student scholarships and bursaries.
• $270,000 to enhance campus safety, well-being and support for students through counselling, public education, 24-hour support line and other resources that relate to sexual violence counselling and support programs.
• $150,000 toward the Nadjiwan Kaandossiwin Gamik Indigenous Student Centre. Funds will help redevelop a heritage home on Laurier’s Waterloo campus into a space for Laurier’s Indigenous student community to learn and discover.
• $30,000 for the makerspaces program to provide and maintain tools to encourage creativity, support programming and enhance students’ experience.
The alumni association, which is comprised of more than 104,000 graduates, has a longstanding history of philanthropy and mentorship. In total, WLUAA has contributed more than $1.9 million to support Laurier’s capital projects and student scholarships since 2009.
“At Laurier, our community culture is at the core of who we are and what we do,” said Jason Coolman, Laurier’s vice-president: external relations. “The association’s support for future student success is a perfect example of one of the many ways our alumni continue to contribute long after they leave campus. Thank you to the Wilfrid Laurier University Alumni Association for this generous support.”