SCHOLARSHIP NEWS: The Indigenous Peoples Scholarship Returns To Support First Nation, Métis, and Inuit Students

By VFS, on June 22, 2023

In recognition of National Indigenous Peoples Day, VFS is proud to announce the reopening of applications for the Indigenous Peoples Scholarship!

The Indigenous Peoples Scholarship was established to help reduce barriers that exist for many Indigenous people looking to enter the creative arts industries. This scholarship fund offers up to $162,000 in tuition to promising creatives who identify as First Nations (status or non-status), Inuit, and/or Métis. Full-tuition scholarships will be awarded to two applicants for any VFS program of their choice. An additional five partial-tuition scholarships will be awarded: two worth $15,000 and three worth $8,000.

VFS alumni have worked on many projects telling the stories of North American Indigenous peoples, both historical and contemporary. Readers of THE BLOG will be familiar with Grace Dove’s starring role in the award-winning Bones of Crows, which shares the history of residential schools, their survivors, and their pursuit of justice, and her role as a journalist investigating Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls in Alaska Daily.

Tanaya Beatty joined Grace in Bones of Crows, playing the daughter of Grace’s character (after a time skip, that is!) Tanaya has also had a recurring role in Yellowstone and starred in God’s Country, Murder at Yellowstone City, and Hochelaga, Terre des Âmes.

Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers directed three episodes of Little Bird, an APTN original mini-series, in addition to a pair of cameo appearances.

Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, a member of the Kainai First Nation, not only has starred in Night Raiders, On the Farm, and Amazon Prime’s Three Pines, but is also a writer and director. Just this year, she directed three episodes of the critically acclaimed mini-series Little Bird. The APTN original series is set during the “Sixties Scoop,” the period in which Indigenous children were forcibly taken from their families by the RMCP and placed into the homes of white settlers.

Alexander Lasheras’ thriller The Beehive also recently featured on THE BLOG, tells the story of an Indigenous family discovering the vanguard of an alien invasion. The film has demanded attention and awards from numerous film festivals.

Over in game development, Game Design graduate Aubrey Tennant, who is Métis, founded games studio Genpop Interactive with Oscar-winning producer Bloodpop.

And just last week, VFS Acting students had the opportunity to hear from Jillian Dion, an alumna of Plains Cree, Métis, and French Canadian descent, who starred in Martin Scorsese’s latest film Killers of the Flower Moon.

Head of Acting Omari Newton interviews Jillian Dion during her recent VFS visit to speak about her career in film and television.

When asked about the opportunity this scholarship provides, Jillian said, “Go for it. As Indigenous people, we are natural-born storytellers. There’s a lot of stories to be told and to be put out into the world. For Indigenous youth, if you want to do it or even if you’re curious, why not have a look at the options out there?”

The above alumni are just a few of VFS’s talented graduates creating works that reflect Indigenous histories and modern realities. There are many more alumni making amazing projects in games, animation, design, and on both sides of the camera.

Applications for the Indigenous Peoples Scholarship close July 21.

Back to THE BLOG homepage

Chat With Us

International Chat:
Asia | Others