NIC Foundation helps record number of NIC students in Port Alberni

NIC nursing student Jennifer Huffman and Alberni Valley Lions Club President Tom Hall share a moment at the NIC Foundation awards in Port Alberni. Huffman has received nearly $3,000 in bursaries in the past three years, thanks to generous Port Alberni donors.

Jennifer Huffman and 46 NIC students in Port Alberni received a record $26,000 in NIC scholarships and bursaries this year, thanks to the
generous support of the Port Alberni community.

“The support I received from bursaries has helped me financially, psychologically and emotionally,” said Huffman, who spoke on behalf of student at a special NIC Foundation Awards reception in Port Alberni this month.

“Knowing the community I live in supports my efforts to obtain a degree makes me feel valued and recognized; this means a great deal to me.”

Huffman started her academic career in NIC’s Licensed Practical Nursing diploma program in Port Alberni and now commutes to the Comox Valley to complete her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. Returning to school as a mature single mother is difficult, she says, but she is optimistic about the opportunities that await her with this additional level of education.

The nearly $3,000 she received over the past three years has been crucial to her educational success. This year, she received a $500 Alberni Valley Lions Club Bursary from Club President Tom Hall as well as $200 from the Alberni Valley Medical Society.

“It was inspiring to hear Jennifer’s story,” Hall said. “To learn of the impact our contributions make reinforces to our members why we need to continue to support post‐secondary students.”

The NIC Foundation partners with individuals and community organizations to provide scholarships and bursaries to students. 2017 was a record year for Port Alberni students with 17 more students receiving awards than in 2015, a 57 per cent increase. Students also received $8,245 more in awards, in the same period.

“Each and every one our donors should be very proud for helping so many students in furthering their education,” said NIC Foundation Board Secretary Ilona Horgen. “Education is a commodity that never depreciates through a person’s life time and I would like to thank all of our donors for their dedication and generosity in making these gifts a reality.”

This year, the non‐profit organization distributed $290,000 to NIC students across the region through 375 separate awards.

“The amount of support the NIC Foundation will distribute to students this year speaks to the generosity of our communities,” said Randall Heidt, NIC Vice President, Strategic Initiatives. “We see the difference scholarships and bursaries make for our students and we are incredibly grateful to the people who make these awards possible.”

The NIC Foundation has been advancing student success, education and community growth through NIC for more than 25 years. It supports NIC students through scholarships and bursaries, equips classrooms with current technology and ensures the best possible learning facilities are accessible on the Central and North Island. It envisions a future where every student has the opportunity to pursue post‐secondary education, train for a new career or develop employable skills to support themselves and their families.

To support the NIC Foundation and make a difference in the lives of post‐secondary students, visit, call 250‐334‐5085 or email
Applications for 2018 awards are available starting March 1, 2018. For a complete list of awards, visit

Media Contact:
Christiana Wiens
Media Liaison, North Island College
O. 250‐334‐5280 | M. 250‐218‐4097

Media Contact
C: 250-207-6946