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New bursary for VCC counselling skills students experiencing housing instability

Posted on March 21, 2022

Addiction Counselling Skills Advanced Certificate

A VCC Counselling Skills instructor guides students in a supportive classroom setting.


A new bursary announced by the B.C. Ministry of Attorney General and BC Housing offers post-secondary students who experience housing instability an opportunity to support their educational goals.

The bursary is named in honour of Katherine McParland, a youth advocate who dedicated her career to ending youth homelessness in the province. This award recognizes McParland’s many significant contributions by assisting young adults (18-25) who have experienced housing instability and who are pursuing an education in social work or community services. 

For VCC students, this means that individuals who are enrolled or are planning to enroll in the Counselling Skills Foundational Certificate for the 2022/23 academic year and meet the bursary’s eligibility criteria have an opportunity to apply for additional funding to help cover the costs of their education.

“VCC students in the Counselling Skills program bring a unique skillset that is often rooted in lived experience,” said Claire Sauvé, Associate Director Continuing Studies. “With training from our experienced instructors, students complete this program with the skills needed to give back to the community as support workers and make a positive impact in people’s lives. We are grateful to the Ministry of Attorney General and BC Housing for creating a bursary that aids eligible students in this important line of work.”

VCC's Counselling Skills Foundational Certificate curriculum is designed to provide students with practical and experiential learning that is grounded in theory and evidence-based practice. As part of the college’s Continuing Studies programming, the certificate offers flexible learning options, allowing students to enroll in classes that suit their schedule. 

The Katherine McParland Bursary is part of BC Housing’s Education Awards Program, which provides financial support to post-secondary and training program students from households receiving housing subsidies or rental assistance. Applications for the bursary award are now open. 

VCC students who meet the eligibility criteria are encouraged to consider applying for this bursary. More details can be found on the BC Housing website.

Interested in a career in social services? Learn more about VCC's Counselling Skills Foundational Certificate.