Kellen Harper grew up on a farm near Birch Hills, Sask., and always knew he was better suited to physical, hands-on work. That knowledge led him to power engineering studies at Saskatchewan Polytechnic (formerly SIAST), and now to a Tolko scholarship for Aboriginal students.
“My future goal for right now is to complete all my schooling and finish government tests so that as soon as I’m done school, I’m ready to hit the workforce,” says Harper, a first-year power engineering student at the Saskatoon campus who was recently told he’d earned a $2,500 Tolko scholarship.
The new scholarship is part of Tolko’s commitment to supporting Indigenous students.
“We work closely with Aboriginal communities at our mills and we employ a number of Aboriginal people, so it’s important to us to develop a relationship with students in those areas and support them in their endeavours,” says Sherri Roger, HR Advisor, Tolko.
Two scholarships became available and were awarded in 2018 to Sask Polytechnic students with an Indigenous background who meet a handful of criteria. The institution’s selection panel chooses the scholarship winners.
“Hopefully someday those students will consider joining Tolko,” says Rogers, adding Tolko regularly recruits team members from Sask Polytechnic for a range of trades roles. “It’s an important institution in Saskatchewan and we’re glad to have developed this partnership with them.”