Diversity Scholarship

2017 ICA Diversity Scholarship Announcement – Extended to Monday, August 7!

ICA is currently accepting applicants for the 2017 Diversity Scholarship, which recognizes the potential of students to cultivate diversity in the Capital Region.

The Greater Victoria area is growing and now reflects a variety of ethnicities, customs, languages, beliefs, abilities, values, and talents. According to the 2006 census, 19% of Victoria’s residents are immigrants born outside of Canada. Nearly nine per cent of Victoria residents are members of a visible minority
ethno-cultural group.

“ICA seeks to support the education of culturally sensitive community leaders,” says Jean McRae, ICA Chief Executive Officer. “Our scholarship program is an investment in the cultural capital of Greater Victoria.”

Each year, ICA awards one $1,000 undergraduate scholarship and one $1,000 graduate scholarship for students in, or accepted into, degree programs at colleges and universities in the Greater Victoria area.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Acceptance or registration in a college or university degree program in Greater Victoria;
    • Career goals directly related to helping Greater Victoria meet the challenges of diverse societies;
    • Record of most recent academic achievement (such as transcripts);
    • Record of volunteer or professional involvement in multicultural affairs or diversity education,
    training, or community activities; and
    • Familiarity with ICA and its mission.

Applicants should submit an application by Monday, August 7, 2017 to the attention of the President of the Board of Directors of the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, 930 Balmoral Road, Victoria, BC, V8T 1A8 or by email to

Application letters (not exceeding 1,000 words) should discuss how the applicant’s academic program of study will prepare the applicant for a career dedicated to promoting cultural awareness and understanding and advocating for the human rights of people of all cultures. Applications should be accompanied by two letters of reference and a resume. Applications will be reviewed by the ICA Board of Directors.

Successful applicants will be notified of their award by Friday, September 1, 2017. Successful applicants agree to be featured in Tapestry, the ICA online newsletter, and to be present at ICA’s Annual General Meeting on September 14, 2016, to receive their award.

For questions, please contact Lauren Kelly, Executive Assistant, at 250-388-4728 ext. 124

2016 ICA Diversity Scholarship Winners

Congratulations to our 2016 Diversity Scholarship recipients Amalee Danister and Mehdi Hashemi! Each year ICA receives scholarship applications from students who exemplify inclusivity and diversity within their communities, and we would like to acknowledge all applicants for the incredible work that you do!

Amalee Danister 

Amalee Danister is a full time Business student at Camosun College. She is in her second year of a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Finance/Accounting. Amalee immigrated to Canada in 2011. She was born and raised in Sri Lanka. She was a Primary school Teacher and Indian Dancing Teacher in Sri Lanka. After her marriage, she went to Japan and lived there for 7 years. During her time in Japan, she enjoyed the rich Japanese culture and taught English to Japanese kids.

Whenever she gets time, she tries to help her community. She has volunteered at James Bay Community Closet for 1.5 years and now she is a volunteer at Victoria Police department. Amalee is a single mother of a 7 years old daughter. Her beautiful daughter means everything to her. Her career goal is to become self-sufficient and work in a financial institution as a financial planner.


Mehdi Hashemi

Mehdi Hashemi was born and raised in Tehran, Iran where he went to high school (2004) and completed a BA degree in Political Science at the Azad University of Tehran (2008). Following his BA, he started a MA in International Relations at the Azad University of Tehran. However, before defending his thesis, he was forced to leave the country and seek asylum Turkey in 2010. After going through the UNHCR resettlement process, Mehdi landed in Canada in April 2012 and joined his family in Victoria, British Columbia. Upon his arrival, he started to learn English at the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria and then at Camosun College. As an ESL student at the college, Mehdi had several awards and accomplishments. He was one of the winners of Diversity (short story) Challenge Award (2013), and his story titled ‘The Only Way to My Dream’ was published in an especial publication by the college named Voices of Diversity. He was also the nominated student speaker for School of Access Annual Awards (2013) and the winner of Annual ESL Student Writer Award (2013).

In 2014, he started his MA in Political Science at the University of Victoria and dedicated his research to issues of identity, integration, and inclusion. Mehdi completed his MA in April 2016, and has just started his PhD in political science at the University of Victoria, and is excited to continue his involvement in the promotion of cultural diversity of his community.


2015 ICA Diversity Scholarships Winners

We want to thank all of the 2015 Diversity Scholarship applicants. All applicants already engage in such meaningful work within our community, and ICA is honored to have gotten the opportunity to learn from and about this year’s participants.

Congratulations to Vanessa Rose and Gagan Leekha as ICA’s 2015 Diversity Scholarship winners. To read more about Vanessa and Gagan you can visit the ICA blog here.

Diversity Scholarship