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Student Bursary Fund - FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

If you can't find the answer you're looking for, use the link at the bottom of this webpage to request a follow-up email or phone call from Red Deer Polytechnic Partnerships and Advancement Manager, Erin Schulha. 

Questions about Scholarships & Bursaries

What is the difference between a scholarship and a bursary?

Bursaries are distributed based solely on financial need. Scholarships can include additional criteria, such as performance measures, enrollment in a particular program or area of study, or participation in an extracurricular program like RDP Athletics. Many scholarships do not require students to demonstrate financial need. 

How will the bursaries be awarded? 

Bursaries are distributed to students who demonstrate financial need. The RDP Student Bursaries will be awarded on a first-eligible basis, meaning that students who meet the eligibility criteria will receive bursaries in the order their applications are received.  

Please visit for a description of the eligibility criteria. 

What will $1,000,000 in bursary funding actually look like? 

Bursaries will be distributed as tuition credits and cannot exceed the actual costs associated with a recipient's program. Full-time students could receive up to $1,500 and part-time students could receive up to $750. If 1,300 part-time students receive $750 bursaries, the total distributed funds would equal $975,000. If 650 full-time students received the maximum amount, the total distributed funds would again equal $975,000. We expect that a combination of full- and part-times students will access the bursary, and that awarded amounts will vary.  

We look forward to sharing updates with you about the number of students who are accessing this funding as it becomes available.  

Is this an endowed fund where only a portion of the interest is distributed annually? 

No, the RDP Student Bursary Fund is not an endowed fund. 100% of donated funds will be transferred to students in the 2021/22 and 2022/23 academic years. It is our intention to provide students with immediate support in the form of tuition credits. Red Deer Polytechnic remains committed to growing our scholarships endowment, which currently provides for more than $1,000,000 in available scholarships and bursaries each year. You can give to endowed scholarship funds here.

The RDP Student Bursary fund and Red Deer Polytechnic's endowed scholarships fund are two unique streams of student support. The new campaign addresses students’ needs for immediate financial support. The work to grow our existing endowment continues to be a key area of focus for long-term financial sustainability for Red Deer Polytechnic and stability for student funding.  

Will students in all programs (trades, certificates, diplomas, degrees) be eligible to access the new Student Bursary? 

No. Trades students will not be able to access the bursary. The funds are administered as tuition credits. Trades students pay tuition and fees through the Government of Alberta, so the tuition credits cannot be applied. Trades students can access many other scholarships and awards through Red Deer Polytechnic’s General Scholarships Application form, as well as scholarships funded through community organizations and the Government of Alberta. Learn more at If you are interested in supporting the financial needs of Trades students, giving [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (subject: Trades%20scholarships%20inquiry) (connect with us) about the many scholarship funds you can support.

Students in credit certificate, diploma and degree programs will be eligible to access this bursary, according to the criteria available at The bursary is available to new and returning students. 

Administrative Questions

Who manages the fund? 

As with all Red Deer Polytechnic scholarships and bursaries, the awards are administered by RDP Student Funding and Awards through the Student Connect Centre, while the gifts are managed by the RDP Foundation. As such, donors who give $25 or more annually will receive a charitable tax receipt. 

Will I receive a charitable tax receipt?​

Yes. Donations totaling to $25 annually will be issued a charitable tax receipt.  Charitable Business # 89051 5570 RR0001. Contact constance [dot] gallant [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (Constance Gallant )if you have questions about your tax receipt. 

If Donating by Mail, Please Note: As per CRA regulations, donations postmarked before or on December 31 of the current year will receive a charitable tax receipt for credit for the current calendar year.  The relevant date is the postmark on the envelope accompanying the cheque vs. the date on the cheque (ie. if the cheque is dated December 31 of the current year but the postmark is in (ie.) January of next year, the donor will be issued a tax receipt for the next calendar year).

If you would like to make your gift in person, the RDC Foundation Office will be closed as of noon on December 24, 2021 and open on January 4, 2022.  Cheques will be accepted at the RDP Information Desk during that time.

Can I make a gift in installments?​

Yes. You can set these installments when you make your gift online in the "Type of gift" section. If you would like to make your gift in installments using any other payment method, connect with constance [dot] gallant [at] rdc [dot] ab [dot] ca (subject: Installments%20inquiry) (Constance Gallant )to work out the details, or request more information here

Why does Red Deer Polytechnic need donor funds; isn’t it government funded?​

Only a percentage of Red Deer Polytechnic's needs are fulfilled through government funding. The private support of donors is an integral part of educating and providing opportunities for our students. Bursaries are the most direct way to support students who face financial challenges in accessing post-secondary education.

What is the Red Deer Polytechnic's goal for raising bursary and scholarship funds?​

Every student who wants to access post-secondary education at Red Deer Polytechnic should be able to. We are committed to a long term strategy to eliminate financial barriers for students.  

Questions about Recognition

How will my gift be acknowledged?​

All scholarship donors are recognized in alignment with RDP's Donor Stewardship Plan. Request more information about how we thank and publicly recognize donors to Red Deer Polytechnic here

Can I make an anonymous donation?​

Yes. You can ask to make your gift anonymous when you make your gift online in the "Additional Information" section. If you would like to make your anonymous gift using any other payment method, connect with our abby [dot] kaun [at] rdc [dot] ab [dot] ca (subject: Anonymous%20giving) (Donor Relations Advisor )to work out the details. 

What is the Red Deer Polytechnic Foundation?​

The RDP Foundation was established in 1982 to provide our supporters the opportunity to impact learners in many ways.  

The goals of the Foundation are to: 

  • Serve as the fundraising arm of Red Deer Polytechnic
  • Attract increased financial support for RDP learners and programs 
  • Cultivate a committed volunteer base 

As Red Deer Polytechnic continues to grow, the continued support of our donors and volunteers is essential to maximizing the unique potential that lies ahead. It is with this support from our communities that our institution will continue to influence the growth and prosperity of our region. We are excited to continue building the relationships and partnerships that have made this bright future possible. 

What if I want to talk to someone about giving, who can I reach out to?​

Partnerships and Advancement Manager, erin [dot] schulha [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (subject: RDP%20Student%20Bursary%20Inquiry) (Erin Schulha), would be happy help you. Give her a call at 403.318.5810 or use our Donor Inquiry form

Interested in learning more about how you can support RDP students?

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