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Viola Desmond Awards & Bursary Program

A group of diverse Black women at the Viola Desmond Awards.

Toronto Metropolitan University’s Viola Desmond Awards and Bursary Program promotes Black flourishing, shining a light on the phenomenal Black women and gender-diverse people whose labour, creativity, passion and skills are positively impacting the entire TMU community. Their contributions are ensuring that Viola's legacy thrives for generations to come.

Now in its 16th year, this annual program is led by the Office of the Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion (OVPECI). This year, OVPECI is partnering with the Lincoln Alexander School of Law, with contributions from campus partners serving on the Viola Desmond Planning Committee.

Learn more about Viola Desmond.

Nominations now open!

Do you know a Black woman or gender-diverse person connected to the university who is making a positive difference in their community? The deadline for applications is June 7.

Five award recipients are chosen each year

Each year, five awards are given to Black women and gender-diverse people connected to the university including a university student, a faculty member, a staff member, an alumni and a local high school student. 

Student recipients also receive a $500 financial award. 

Eligibility

Nominees must self-identify as Black and as a woman or gender-diverse person. They must be an active leader in their community, with examples to showcase the positive difference they have made in areas such as equity, diversity, inclusion, human rights and social justice. 

Review the full awards criteria and nomination process.

Save the date

The next Viola Desmond Awards and Bursary Ceremony will be held in November 2024. Stay tuned for more details.

Organizing committee

The 2024 Viola Desmond Awards and Bursary Program is led by the Office of the Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion (OVPECI) in partnership with the Lincoln Alexander School of Law with contributions from campus partners serving on the Viola Desmond Planning Committee.

Michelle Forde
Manager, PICCABR and ECI Initiatives, Office of the Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion

Sharmaine McKenzie
Executive Director Strategic Initiatives and Operations, Lincoln Alexander School of Law

Questions?

Please contact the Office of the Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion (OVPECI) at violadesmond@torontomu.ca.