Page created by Terrance Fowler

                                  November 2013

     Marcia Nickerson, Vice President, Indigenous Governance • 60 George St. Ottawa, ON K1N 1J4
                               • telephone: 647-986-4244 • www.iog.ca

Table of Contents








This report is an independent evaluation of Indspire’s activities, projects and performance
in relation to the Conditional Grant Agreement for the Government of Canada Post-
Secondary Scholarship Fund (CGA) between Indspire and the Government of Canada as
represented by the Department of Canadian Heritage.

The purpose of this Evaluation is to assess Indspire’s overall performance in achieving
the expected outcomes and planned results of the CGA. It takes into consideration
Indspire’s activities and projects as they relate to the CGA from 2008 - 2012 as outlined
in the Evaluation Framework. It also takes into account the 2008 Evaluation conducted
by KTA Inc.

The Department of Canadian Heritage has been providing funding to Indspire since
1985.1 In 2003, recognizing the extraordinary work of Indspire in the area of education,
the Government of Canada provided a $12 million conditional grant to support post-
secondary studies and expand Indspire’s well-established education program. As of
March 2007, a further $10 million was added to increase the total amount granted by the
Minister of Canadian Heritage to $22 million. Indspire has established a separately
managed fund for the $22 million of the Conditional Grant Agreement (CGA). The
Government of Canada provides the terms that govern the purpose, management, and
investment of, and reporting on the Conditional Grant Agreement for the Government of
Canada Post-Secondary Scholarship Program.

In 2013, the federal budget included a commitment of $10 million in new funding for
Building Brighter Futures, another acknowledgement of the Indspire’s track record of
success. 2 Indspire has undertaken to match the funding with investment from the private
sector, and will be able to provide a total of $20 million in new funding for students.

As part of Indspire’s broader education initiative, the $22 million Government of Canada
Post Secondary Scholarships Fund is intended to enhance Indspire’s capacity to provide
scholarships and bursaries to Indigenous students. The Government of Canada Post
Secondary Scholarships Fund assists First Nation, Inuit, and Métis post-secondary
students, wherever they live in Canada, engaged in fields of study that support and
contribute to Indigenous self-government and economic self-reliance. The aim is to
support and encourage the achievement of higher levels of education by Indigenous
students, thereby:

  Canadian Heritage Press Release, Government of Canada Announces Endowment Fund for National
Aboriginal Achievement Foundation, 2003.
  “Federal budget: Indspire receives $10 million for bursaries and scholarships for Indigenous students”.
Indspire News. https://indspire.ca/news/federal-budget-indspire-receives-10-million-for-bursaries-and-
scholarships-for-indigenous-students/. Retrieved September 12, 2013.

•         contributing to the long term development of Indigenous communities;
           •         improving productive potential; and
           •         facilitating the participation of Indigenous people in Canadian society.

The Government of Canada Post Secondary Scholarships Fund supports Indigenous post-
secondary students across Canada enrolled in programs that are two or more academic
years in length and are in disciplines that support and contribute to Indigenous economic

Since 2010, ongoing consultations with students, laureates, bursary and scholarship
recipients and other groups have helped to inform Indspire planning. In response the
Indspire Board made a commitment to focus on providing support to K-12 programming
and improving high school completion rates of Indigenous students. In March 2013
Indspire officially launched the Indspire Institute, which, in its full implementation will
include an online community focused on improving the success of Indigenous students.
Indigenous people continue to be the fastest growing demographic group and are the least
likely to finish high school. Indspire recognized the need to create an online community
where educators, students, parents and others can come together to network and find
support and resources.3





       •          Gathering Place: Sharing Successful Practices is a clearinghouse of practices
                  evaluated by seven principles created through consultations with national
                  Indigenous scholars.
       •          Peer Support: Educator Coaching connects educators of Indigenous students
                  from different geographical regions, including small Northern communities, by a
                  virtual social network that can be accessed through Indspire’s Success and
                  Knowledge Centre.

    Indspire Institute Overview, February 11, 2013.

•    Nurturing Capacity: Building Community Success brings researchers and past
         Indspire-funded students into Indigenous communities to document successful
         practices or programs, to showcase successes, and to provide research tools and
         program strategies.
    •    The Realizing Project focuses on the development of community-based
         sustainable programs that foster high school completion.
    •    Soaring: Indigenous Youth Career Conferences provide opportunities across
         Canada for Indigenous high school students to learn about career options,
         education and training requirements, and current employment trends from
         Canada’s top corporate and Indigenous business leaders.
    •    Industry in the Classroom sessions create awareness for students about potential
         career opportunities in the Canadian workforce through a combination of
         classroom visits by Indigenous role models and experts, and videos about
         professionals that work in a broad number of fields.

Indspire also operates programs reflecting its commitment to promoting achievement and
recognizing excellence in the Indigenous community:
    • The Indspire Awards, formerly the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards,
       recognize Indigenous professionals and youth who demonstrate outstanding
       career achievement. The presentation is produced and broadcast nationally by
       Global Television and Aboriginal Peoples Television (APTN).
    • Rivers to Success is a career mentorship program that helps senior level students
       transition into the workforce through one-on-one discussions with established

Section 8 of the Conditional Grant Agreement for the Government of Canada Post
Secondary Scholarships Fund (CGA) established three key expected outcomes as a result
of the above activities:
        • Indigenous youth have access to culturally relevant programs that help them
           improve their skills, knowledge and leadership;
        • Indigenous youth enhance their cultural identity; and
        • Indigenous youth improve their skills knowledge and leadership.

The CGA requires Indspire, in consultation with the Government of Canada, to develop
appropriate performance indicators for these outcomes. The 2008 Evaluation established
a set of outcomes with indicators that have been reviewed and adapted for the purpose of
this evaluation.

The objectives adapted from the 2008 Evaluation Framework are to:
   • Determine if the criteria and processes have fully met the purpose and aims of the
       Government of Canada Post Secondary Scholarships Fund;

•   Assess what has been accomplished with the revenues generated towards
       achieving the aims for which the fund was created and how this has helped
       Indspire improve the results towards its own goals;
   •   Identify what is working well (success factors) and what needs improvement, as
       well as any unintended outcomes in order to improve the reach and future
       outcomes of Indspire funding.

In accordance with the Conditional Grant Agreement (CGA), the 2008 evaluation
performed by KTA measured Indspire’s performance in achieving the key expected
outcomes. The 2008 evaluation also identified a number of performance indicators that
are addressed in the current (2013) evaluation.

1. Indigenous PSE students have access to culturally relevant programs
   • # of applicants by Indigenous ancestry
   • # of applicants by age
   • # of applicants by residency
   • Degree of communication with Indigenous students and communities across
       Canada reflected by:
          o Increase in # of applicants
          o % response rate for communication tools used
          o Relationship between % of awards and % of total Indigenous identity
   • Level and reach of the promotion of the scholarship program across Canada:
          o % change in applicants and awards by geographic location
          o % change in Indspire take-up rates by Province/Territory
          o Relationship between % of take-up rates per P/T and total % of P/T
   • Level of satisfaction of applicants with Indspire’s processes (application and

2. Help Indigenous PSE students enhance their cultural identity
   • Level of connection of the recipients to Indigenous community
          o Impact of award on recipients cultural identity
   • Level of Indspire’s relationship with Indigenous communities and leaders
          o % of recipients that learned of Indspire through Indigenous Organizations

3. Indigenous PSE students improve their skills, knowledge and leadership
   • # of number of recipients by Indigenous ancestry
   • # of recipients by age
   • # of recipients by residence
   • # of awards by degree
   • # of awards by discipline
   • # of awards by year of study
   • Level of importance of award to ability to access PSE
   • % of recipients where financial need was met

The methodology for this evaluation had four components:
   • A review of background materials and files on Indspire, the CGA, and other
      documentation to address key questions brought forward in the evaluation
   • A review of existing CGA Program data from Indspire’s student database,
      including information on both successful and unsuccessful applicants.
   • An online survey to all recipients of the Government of Canada CGA funds to
      assess students’ perception of Indspire’s activities and projects around the CGA
      and Indspire’s broader Education Program.
   • Interviews with key informants to better understand perceptions of the Indspire’s
      role in the providing awards to Indigenous post-secondary students and Indspire’s
      activities and projects in relation to the CGA.
Sources for the documentation and file review included:
   • Indspire administration and communications files related to the CGA activities
       and projects;
   • Statistics Canada data;
   • Indspire website;
   • Previous CGA evaluations;
   • Indspire Bursary & Scholarships Policy;
   • Indspire Reports: Annual reports; Monitoring and Tracking Reports; Financial
       Statements & Audit.
Indspire maintains a comprehensive database with information about successful and
unsuccessful bursary recipients. Indspire provided this information to the IOG in a
spreadsheet format, for analysis of the:
    • Number of applications received and number of awards allocated;
    • Amount of funding requested and amount allocated;
    • Number of awards allocated across programs (Fine Arts, Post Secondary
    • Number of awards allocated across disciplines, fields of concentrations and
       degree (undergraduate, graduate, diploma/certificate); and
    • Number of awards allocated by: Indigenous identity age; gender; province; year
       of study; college or university for CGA award recipients from 2008-2012
       academic years.

To address confidentiality issues associated with student data, Indspire excluded names,
mailing address, email, phone number or any other possible “identifier” in the student

Indspire Officials
Interviews were conducted with 4 Indspire officials over the course of the evaluation,
including the President and CEO, the Vice-President of Education, the Executive
Assistant to the VP Education and the Post-Secondary Education Coordinator.

Indspire Board Members
Three Indspire Board Members participated in one-on-one telephone interviews for the
purpose of the evaluation.

Indspire Jury Members
Two Indspire Jury Members participated in one-on-one telephone interviews for the
purpose of the evaluation.

Canadian Heritage Officials
Two Canadian Heritage officials participated in a telephone interview for the purpose of
the Evaluation.

An anonymous and confidential online student survey was sent electronically by Indspire
to 2,300 recipients of the CGA award. 236 responded to the survey in its entirety (a
response rate of just over 10%).4 These numbers provide us with a confidence interval of
+/- 6% (at a 95% confidence level).

As you can see in Figure 1 below, respondents to the survey generally mirrored the
characteristics of the recipient population by gender, ancestry, regional breakdown, and
type of program.

Indigenous post-secondary students who were unsuccessful in receiving Indspire funding
support or those who have never applied did not participate in the online survey. In
addition, students were only consulted through an online survey, restricting the
understanding of why students respond to questions in the way they have.

    Tracking indicates an additional 44 visited the survey but did not complete it.

Figure 1: Respondents’ profile and Indspire funding recipient proportions

                                                          Survey              Indspire funding
                                                      respondents (%)       recipients (08-13) (%)
Gender          Male                                        20%                      27%
                Female                                      80%                      73%
Ancestry        Status First Nation                         40%                      39%
                Non-status First Nation                     6%                       13%
                Métis                                       53%                      46%
                Inuit                                       2%                        2%
Regional        Alberta                                     17%                      13%
affiliation     British Columbia                            16%                      16%
                Manitoba                                    14%                      13%
                New Brunswick                               3%                        1%
                Newfoundland and Labrador                   4%                        4%
                Northwest Territories                       3%                        2%
                Nova Scotia                                 2%                        3%
                Nunavut                                     0%                        1%
                Ontario                                     25%                      29%
                PEI                                         0%                        0%
                Quebec                                      4%                        5%
                Saskatchewan                                11%                      12%
                Yukon                                       2%                        1%
Program         Diploma / Certificate                       15%                      18%
type            Undergraduate                               51%                      66%
                Graduate / Master's                         12%                      10%
                Doctorate / PhD                             8%                        6%
                Professional degree                         6%                        0%
                Other (unclassified)                        8%                        1%

The Evaluation findings in this section are over the period 2008 – 2012/13, and are based
on the four issues outlined in the Evaluation Framework:
    • Relevance
    • Results / Effectiveness
    • Cost-effectiveness
    • Success Factors and Areas for Improvement.

Because of the integrative nature of Indspire’s education program suite, some of the
findings around the activities and projects under the CGA are relevant to both the CGA
and Indspire’s broader post-secondary awards streams. The Evaluation findings draw
these distinctions when necessary and integrate them where appropriate.

In both the 2008 and 2013 evaluations, respondents noted that investment revenues were
not as favorable as hoped for, but of course this is related to both the state of the economy
and the asset allocation method adopted. Table 1 reflects the dollar amount of
scholarships awarded with the available funding.

Table 1. Scholarships Awarded

 Total Government of               $22 million
 Canada Post Secondary                o $12 million at start date (2003-04)
 Scholarships Fund:                   o Additional $10 million in 2006-07

 Academic year                     Scholarships awarded
     2012-13                      $761,000
     2011-12                      $1,372,400
     2010-11                      $776,700
     2009-10                      $589,100
     2008-09                      $666,650

The Vice President of Education reports directly to the President & CEO. The Vice
President of Finance and Administration is responsible for the CGA administration and
reporting, along with all other Education contributions and investments. Indspire has
established an Investment Committee to oversee the investment and management of the
Government of Canada Post Secondary Scholarships Fund, in addition to other
investments. Members of the Committee are financially literate and currently include six
Board members and as required by the CGA at least three Directors who are not officers
or employees of Indspire. The Committee makes its investment decisions on a Statement
of Investment Policy that is approved by the Indspire Board annually. The investment
policy sets out investment objectives, asset allocations and performance benchmarks. In
the case of the CGA, the investment policy is guided by Indspire’s CGA with Canadian
Heritage which prescribes certain standards and limitations on the investment of CGAs.

The daily management of the investments is performed by CIBC Wood Gundy.
Presently, CIBC Wood Gundy manages two distinct pools of capital, as follows:

The Government of Canada Trust (which houses the 22M Government of Canada Post
Secondary Scholarships Fund), where over the past 12 months (to September 30, 2013),
the Trust returned 4.28% based on an asset allocation of 65% income and
35% growth. Investment implementation is primarily accommodated by highly liquid
and inexpensive exchange traded funds.

The All Trusts, where over the past 12 months (to September 30, 2013), the Trusts
returned 6.4% based on an asset allocation of 50% income and 50% growth. Investment
implementation is primarily accommodated by highly liquid and inexpensive exchange
traded funds.

It was noted that if the Government of Canada Trust's investment methodology was
amended to merely match the All Trusts investment methodology, then the Government
of Canada Trust would have earned 2.12% more in investment income for this 12-month
period, or, based on $22M of capital, $466,000 in extra revenue for scholarship purposes.

Noteworthy is this 2% "spread" in earnings between the pools of capital is consistent over
the longer term, and is a compelling argument to amend the Government of Canada
Trust's asset allocation to match the All Trusts asset allocation to a 50% income and 50%
growth allocation.

Clause 3.1 of the CGA formerly read: “The Grant shall be used solely for the purpose of
the Fund established with the monies awarded by the Minister in December 2003. While
monies may be invested to generate revenues, at no time may the balance of the fund fall
below the amount granted by the Minister”. Effective May 26, 2009, that clause was
replaced with the following: “The Grant shall be used solely for the purpose of the Fund
established with the monies awarded by the Minister in December 2003”.

This allows for investment in equities under the Prudent Person Principle (and to manage
accordingly), thus allowing for market fluctuations while preserving capital over the long
term. Considering the possible growth under The All Trusts allocation methodology, the
Investment Committee may want to revisit the asset allocation of the Government of
Canada Trust. According to the 2009 CGA terms and conditions, it can be accomplished
without the permission of Canadian Heritage.

This section will outline the breakdown of the students who received awards over the
2008-2013 period of Indspire’s CGA funding.

In terms of location of recipients (Figures 4 and 5), over the last 5 years, there has been a
small amount of fluctuation, but Ontario residents have been the largest single group of
awardees. In contrast, Atlantic provinces and the Territories have had relatively few
awardees. These figures are not unexpected, as they generally reflect the population
levels in each province (with the exception of Quebec, where there are a small number of
awardees despite a large population in the province).

Figure 2 and Figure 3 shows the Indigenous heritage of recipients. The figures clearly
demonstrate that while there have been some fluctuations over the five years, the majority
of funding still goes to Status First Nation and Métis Students (although in 2008-09 there
was a large proportion of Non-Status First Nation students compared to other years).
In terms of location of recipients (Figures 4 and 5), over the last 5 years, there has been a
small amount of fluctuation, but Ontario residents have been the largest single group of
awardees. In contrast, Atlantic provinces and the Territories have had relatively few
awardees. These figures are not unexpected, as they generally reflect the population

levels in each province (with the exception of Quebec, where there are a small number of
awardees despite a large population in the province).

Figure 2: Award recipients by Indigenous heritage

           Year                      Status First Non Status   Métis   Inuit        Total5
                                       Nations      First
    2013-12                              195         36        297      16              544
    2012-11                              394         81        342      15              832

    2011-10                              169         39        167      8               383

    2010-09                              130         34        111      4               279

    2009-08                              49          73        134      5               261

Figure 3: Awardees by Indigenous heritage (with 2005-2008 data for comparison)


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  The drop in numbers directly correlates to the amount of available funding. As well, in comparing the
amount of available funding in each academic year it appears that a larger proportion of students are being
funded (eg. 2008-09 261 students @ $665,650 versus 2012-13 544 students @ $747,200). The reality is
that there is a large increase in students funded, however the amount of funding per student has decreased
in an attempt to ensure all applicants receive some support.

Figure 4: Awardees by location6

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Regarding program relevance with respect to the management of the CGA, we
considered three main issues:
    I. Indspire’s alignment with federal government priorities for Indigenous education;
   II. The relation of Indspire’s funding to other Indigenous post secondary education
       funding opportunities in Canada; and
  III. Whether Indigenous students and communities considered the work of Indspire to
       be relevant to their needs.

In 2010, the Government of Canada pledged engaging in a new approach that is effective,
accountable, and well coordinated in providing support to First Nations and Inuit post-
secondary students to ensure that students receive the support they need to attend post-
secondary education.7 The Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development
Canada (AANDC) regularly recognizes Indspire’s award recipients and the
organization’s ongoing work in funding support. In statement recognizing the new
Indspire Institute, the Minister said the government is a “proud partner” of Indspire,
which it recognized as promoting, supporting, and celebrating Indigenous leadership and
achievement.8 In the 2013 budget, the government pledged its support for post-secondary
education for First Nations and Inuit Students through its affirmation of its PSE program
spending, announcement of additional funding for Indspire, and recognition of value in
supporting the government’s PSE priorities.9

“Since the Constitution Act and the Indian Act do not make reference to post-secondary
education, AANDC considers its involvement in Indigenous post-secondary education as
a matter of social policy rather than a legal responsibility.”10

Government funding support for Indigenous post-secondary
AANDC’s Post-Secondary Education (PSE) program consists of post-secondary
education funding and programming that is carried out through three programs. The Post-
Secondary Student Support Program (PSSSP) provides financial assistance to Status
Indian and Inuit students who are enrolled in eligible post-secondary programs, which
includes: trades and apprenticeships, community college and CEGEP diploma or
certificate programs; undergraduate programs; and, advanced or professional degree
programs. Funding for the PSSSP is distributed by Band Councils with Band specific
eligibility criteria.11 In 2010-11, AANDC spent $316 million on PSE programming.12
  Government of Canada. “Budget 2010: Leading the Way on Jobs and Growth”. Tabled by the Minister of
Finance on March 4, 2010.
  “Statement from Minister Valcourt Recognizing the Launch of the Indspire Institute.” AANDC. March
15, 2013.
  “Economic Action Plan 2013: Jobs, Growth, and Long-Term Prosperity”. Government of Canada. Tabled
in the House of Commons by the Minister of Finance on March 21, 2013.
   Evaluation, Performance Measurement, and Review Branch – Audit and Evaluation Sector. Summative
Evaluation of the Post-secondary Education Program, Final Report. June 2012. AANDC.
   Canadian Federation of Students. Aboriginal Students, Aboriginal Education. Retrieved September 10,
   Evaluation, Performance Measurement, and Review Branch – Audit and Evaluation Sector. Summative
Evaluation of the Post-secondary Education Program, Final Report. June 2012. AANDC.

AANDC also promotes bursaries through its Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool, which is
a searchable list of 781 bursaries, scholarships, and incentives across Canada. This tool is
hosted on the AANDC website. The bursaries are offered by governments, universities
and colleges, private and public companies, individual Canadians, organizations and

Other federal programs include the University and College Entrance Preparation Program
for financial and education assistance in attending post-secondary entrance programs, and
the Indian Studies Support Program for design and delivery of university-level courses
for First Nation and Inuit students. In a 2012 Summative Evaluation of the PSE, it was
found that these programs remain relevant, that community-based programming is
providing positive results, and that the roles and responsibilities of the federal
government around post-secondary education need to be clarified.

In British Columbia there is a clear commitment by the Provincial government realized
by the “Aboriginal Post-Secondary Education and Training Policy Framework and
Action Plan”. The framework and action plan is based on a Memorandum of
Understanding signed by key Indigenous and post-secondary organizations that are
nationally and provincially representative. The five goals of the framework that aim to
help Indigenous learners succeed in BC include creating a welcoming learning
environment, partnerships, financial assistance, transitions from secondary to post-
secondary education, and continuous improvement. The Government of Ontario has a
similar instrument called the “Aboriginal Postsecondary Education and Training Policy
Framework”. Other provinces due not appear to demonstrate the same level of
systematization of support for Indigenous post-secondary education.

Other supports for Indigenous post-secondary
In addition to Indpsire, there are other not-for-profit organizations that support
Indigenous education. These organizations include a range of bursaries and scholarships
that are supported by private sector corporations and foundations, which often have study
in particular academic or technical training areas as a requirement.

The Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business recently transferred the program formerly
known as the Foundation for the Advancement of Aboriginal Youth (FAAY) Scholarship
and Bursary Program to Indspire for administration and delivery.

Indigenous post-secondary students have the opportunity to apply for a range of funding
supports - from federal and provincial sources to private and university/college programs
that target Indigenous students to Indigenous organizations. Indspire plays a key role in
helping as many students as possible meet these needs, while in many cases reducing the
burden of student debt.

The Indigenous population trails the non-Indigenous population in completion of
postsecondary education, with the most significant gap in the category of university
degrees.13 Approximately 48.4% of Indigenous people between the age of 25 to 64 have a
postsecondary qualification, compared to 64.7% of non-Indigenous people. The
breakdown for postsecondary educational attainment for Indigenous people was 14.4%
with a trades certificate, 20.6% with a college diploma, 3.5% with a university certificate
or diploma below the bachelor level, and 9.8% with a university degree. Among, the non-
Indigenous population, 12% had a trade certificate, 21.3% had a college diploma, 4.9%
had a university certificate or diploma below the bachelor level, and 26.5% had a
university degree.

Indspire is as the primary nongovernment source of funding and programming that
supports Indigenous education.14 While Indspire has a growing roster of programming,
dispersing funding continues to be central to its mission. Along with government support,
Inspire works with corporations to support funding in four areas: Fine Arts, Oil and Gas
and Trades and Technology, Health Careers, and Post Secondary Education. A number of
Indspire bursaries are listed in the Government of Canada Aboriginal Bursaries database,
but Indspire is distinguished in its profile from other funding organizations through the
high profile it gains on the AANDC webpages on Post-Secondary Education and Funding
for Aboriginals.

Indspire has awarded more than $55 million in bursaries and scholarship awards to more
than 16,000 First Nation, Inuit and Métis recipients across Canada.
Through the online survey, Indspire Award recipients were asked two questions on the
value of the awards on their decision to purpose post-secondary education:
    • How important was Indspire’s Post Secondary Awards Program for you in your
       ability to access post-secondary education?
    • Was it essential to your decision to pursue post-secondary studies?

These two questions were in the 2008 evaluation, but the first question differs slightly in
2013 with the addition of the answer choice “neutral”.

Responses to the first question reveal that the award remains very important to recipients
in their ability access post-secondary education, but its relative importance compared to
2008 has slipped slightly. This may be in part due to the fact that the amount available to
individuals has decreased because the number of recipients has increased.

   These statistics are based on a sample of Aboriginal people from the 2011 National Household Survey
questionnaire as found in “The educational attainment of Aboriginal peoples in Canada”. Retrieved on
September 27, 2013.
   AANDC Website. Post-Secondary Student Support Program (PSSSP). Retrieved September 9, 2013.

Figure 5: Importance of Indspire PSE Award in Accessing Post-Secondary Education











Overall, there remains a close to even split between those that were influenced to pursue
PSE by the award and those who did not agree that it was essential in their decision. The
responses reflected in these two Figures are likely directly related to the amount of
funding available to the students, and the paradigm faced by Indspire regarding
supporting as many students as possible with a limited amount of funds. The amount of
funding requested or required versus the amount received or available would inform how
“essential” it is considered by recipients.

Figure 6: Was the CGA award essential in decision to pursue post-secondary studies?



This evaluation considers the results of the Indspire awards program, particularly the
CGA funded portion of the awards, and the effectiveness of the awards in achieving the
stated aims of both Indspire and the federal government CGA. To assess the effectiveness
we have considered:
        - how successful Indspire has been in reaching a broad range of eligible
           students; and
        - the effectiveness of Indspire’s criteria, outreach and communications activities
           and processes.

This section has three parts:
       (1) Overall results of the CGA Program;
       (2) Effectiveness of the process;
       (3) Extent to which the purpose, aims and outcomes of the CGA have been met.

Due to the nature of Indspire’s education program suite – and the situation of the CGA
Program within it, whereby applicants are first streamed into other categories of awards - care
must be given in interpreting results and trends, as they relate to the CGA funding specifically.
For example, Indspire also funds bursaries in health careers, engineering, and the oil industry
from funds in addition to the federal CGA.

Looking at the overall results of the Indspire CGA funding, this section addresses three
key issues:
        - How is funding support distributed among recipients? (Includes a general
              overview of applications, recipients and award amounts);
        - What areas are being supported? (Includes a breakdown across program area,
              type and discipline);
        - Who does the support reach? (Includes a profile of recipients by Indigenous
              ancestry, region and gender).

How is CGA Funding Support Distributed
As we have noted, CGA recipients need to be seen in the context of Indspire’s overall
PSE program as it draws it applicants from this pool. In general, applications to Indspire
have steadily risen over the last 5 years, with a slight drop in the most recent year (Figure
7). Indspire has consistently delivered funding to all, or nearly all, of its applicants over
the last 5 years (between 87-100%). However, when it comes to being able to provide the
amount of funding requested, Indspire’s total PSE funding has only been able to provide
around 20% of desired funding on average (16%-25% of requested amount over the five

As reflected throughout the evaluation, this is due to the availability of funds, which does
not keep pace with the needs of the students and the increase in applicants. This is a clear
indication that the program is oversubscribed in that while Indspire continues to grow its
public and private sector funds to allocate for this purpose, the need of the students and
the number of students outweighs what Indpsire is able to provide.

Figure 7: Overview of Indspire PSE Bursary Awards Program

Academic   # of                    Total $          Total # of        Amount            % of     % Received
  Year   Applicants                Amount           Recipients        Awarded         Applicants of Amount
                                  Requested                                           Receiving Requested
 2012-13           2,271         $29,932,660           2,050         $5,237,700         90%         17.7%

 2011-12           2,600         $31,049,868           2,220         $6,195,100           85%              18%

 2010-11           2,119         $25,271,975           1,779         $5,489,800           84%              19%
 2009-10           1,939         $19,968,214           1,395         $5,035,250           72%              25%
 2008-09           1,667         $16,877,956           1,341         $4,630,750           80%              22%

Awards from the CGA account for roughly 20-30% of all PSE awards and about 15-20%
of total funding dollars awarded under Indspire’s PSE Program over the 2008-2013
period (Figure 8).

Since applicants do not apply directly for a Government of Canada CGA award
specifically, it cannot be determined what percentage of applicants were unsuccessful in
receiving the specific bursary. Indspire has in fact distributed the funds in a way that
maximizes the impact of available funding by supporting as many worthy applicants as
possible. In other words, Indspire provides some funds requested to all eligible applicants
as opposed to fully funding some and not others. This helps to explain the small
percentage of requested funding for those receiving CGA funding.

Figure 8: Government of Canada CGA Fund Awards Funding Results

Academic Total # of                 # of            % of              Total $         Amount         % Received
  Year     PSE                   Recipients      Recipients           Amount          Awarded        of Amount
         Recipients                               Receiving          Requested                       Requested
                                                 CGA Funds

 2012-13            2271             546              24%            $6,751,896        $761,000            11%

 2011-12            2,552            832              33%           $10,216,402       $1,372,400           13%

 2010-11            1779             383              22%            $4,937,524        $776,700            16%

 2009-10            1395             279              20%            $3,656,232        $589,100            16%
 2008-09             853             261              31%            $3,351,930        $666,650            20%

Recipients are generally slightly older students, with an average age between 25 and 28
(Figure 9). The older average age of award recipients is consistent with the older age
pattern of Indigenous PSE students when compared to the general PSE student
population,15 and also the pattern for awardees’ age in the 2008 evaluation.

     Mendelson, Michael. Aboriginal Peoples and PSE in Canada. Caledon Institute of Social Policy, 2006.

While individual CGA award amounts have ranged from the tiny ($25) 16 to the
substantial ($11,000), the average value of the award ranges between $1,400 in 2012-13
to over $2,500 in 2008-09 (Figure 9). The average award for this evaluation period was
$1,947 (compared with $3,163 in the 2008 evaluation). This is a significant drop in
average funding over the two time periods, and is indicative of the large increase in
applicants and awardees without a concurrent large increase in CGA funds available to

Figure 9: Average age of CGA recipients and average value of award17

 Academic Year          Average Age            Average Value of Award

      2012-13                 25.7                       $1,393.77
      2011-12                 26.2                       $1,649.52
      2010-11                 27.0                       $2,027.94
      2009-10                 27.4                       $2,111.47
      2008-09                 27.4                       $2,554.21

What Areas are being Supported?
The activities and projects under the CGA are intended to achieve higher levels of
education among Indigenous students by supporting Indigenous students enrolled in
community colleges (including CEGEP) and universities in fields of study that respond to
Indigenous self-reliance goals (CGA Section 2.3.1).

As mentioned earlier, CGA funds support awards for PSE and Fine Arts. As one can see
in Figure 10 below, the number of PSE awards is much higher than for Fine Arts (apart
from in 2011-12, when Fine Arts received significantly larger portion of the awards – up
to 10% from the more common 1-4%). It should be noted that Indspire has other
scholarship and bursary awards that are tapped into for Fine Arts students and that
Indspire is one of the few funding streams available to students of Fine Arts.

   Although the minimum award allocated by a jury is $100, this can come from a variety of funding
streams available to Indspire. In the case of this $25 award from the CGA funding pot, the total award to
the student was $2,400 (with $2,375 from another funding source). When sponsor criteria is restricted to a
specific dollar amount Indspire have to then match the student with 2 or more sponsors to reach the dollar
amount awarded by the jury.
   Recipients are only eligible for one Indspire bursary or scholarship per academic year. We have not
tracked recipients of multiple Government of Canada CGA awards or Indspire awards over the 2008-13

Figure 10. CGA awards allocated across PSE and Fine Arts streams





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Conditional Grant Agreement for the Government of Canada Post-Secondary Scholarship
Fund (CGA) awards are supporting students at different levels of their programs (Figure
11). Given that the CGA is supporting college students in two-year programs, it is not
surprising that the number of students being supported begins to slope downwards after
this point (there is a larger number of students correlates with the 2 year program versus a
4 year program). The relatively few number of 4th year plus reflects the lower number of
students in graduate programs.

Figure 11: Total # of CGA Recipients by Year of Study

   Year                      1st Year of 2nd Year 3rd Year of 4th Year > 4th Year of           Total
                                Study of Study       Study    of Study    Study
 2013-12                          202       165         92           69          14            542
 2012-11                          299       222         157          119         31            828
 2011-10                          137       95          81           51          19            383
 2010-09                          93        75          54           48          9             279
 2009-08                          86        63          58           41          13            261

The CGA awards primarily assist university undergraduate, graduate and professional
programs, with the largest proportion (64% - 68%) studying undergraduate programs (see
Figure 12 below). Since university attainment is the biggest PSE gap for Indigenous
people, the activities under the CGA are contributing to reducing this gap. Interestingly,
there has been a decrease between from 2008-09 to 2012-13 in the proportion of graduate
students (both Masters and PhD) being supported through Indspire (although the number
of graduate students has generally increased).

Figure 12: CGA Awards by Type of Diploma/Degree

              Year        2013-12          2012-11           2011-10            2010-09         2009-08
 Type of Degree          #      %         #      %          #      %           #      %        #      %
 Diploma          /
 Certificate            102     19%      171      21%      71       19%       47       17%    23    9%
 Degree                 359     66%      536      64%     260       68%      187       67%    172   66%
 Graduate Degree -
 Masters                50       9%       79      9%       31        8%       28       10%    37    14%
 Graduate Degree -
 PhD                    26       5%       40      5%       20        5%       16       6%     28    11%
 Degree                  0      0%        2        0%      0        0%        0         0%     0     0%
 Other                   8      1%        4        0%      1        0%        1         0%     1     0%
              Total     545    100%      832      100%    383      100%      279       100%   261   100%

Figure 13 tracks the overall distribution of program types for CGA award recipients for
the period of this Evaluation (2008/09-2012/13). It clearly shows the majority of
recipients pursuing undergraduate degrees (66%), with graduate degrees and diplomas
accounting for nearly all of the remaining qualifications (16% and 18% respectively).

Figure 13: 2008-2013 Distribution by Program Type for CGA Award Recipients




The distribution of CGA awards across Program Disciplines

Figure 14 below) reflects choices students make in terms of fields of study, but also the
impact of other Indspire awards programs, which successful applicants are matched with
before being allocated a CGA award.

Figure 14: CGA Award across Program Discipline

                Year   2008-2009      2009-2010        2010-2011      2011-2012      2012-2013
 Discipline            Total    %     Total      %     Total    %     Total    %     Total    %
 Business               0      0%      6         2%     0      0%      47     6%      10     2%
 Computer Studies       0      0%      0         0%     0      0%       0     0%       2     0%
 Education              60     23%     28        10%    84     22%     97     12%     91     17%
 Engineering             0      0%      1         0%     0      0%     20      2%      3      1%
 Fine Arts               2     1%      12        4%     0      0%      39     5%       0     0%
 Health/Nursing          0     0%       0        0%     0      0%       1     0%       3     1%
 Law                    24     9%      22        8%     9      2%      18     2%      14     3%
 Science                0       0%     20         7%    24      6%    103     12%     53     10%
 Social Science        149     57%    130        47%   153     40%    351     42%    270     50%
 Social Work            12     5%      33        12%    57     15%     75     9%      29     5%
 Technical Studies      14     5%      22         8%    53     14%     40     5%      24     4%
 Unclassified           0       0%     5       2%       3       1%     41      5%     46      8%
 Total                  261    100%    279    100%      383    100%    832    100%    545    100%

The discipline of Social Sciences draws the largest percentage of CGA recipients,
consistently drawing in 40-57% of supported students. Professions, such as education
(10-23%) and social work (5-15%), which have traditionally drawn Indigenous students,
also constitute a sizeable percentage. Subjects such as engineering, science and technical
studies have lower representation over the period being evaluated (0-12%). The one
subject area that has seen falling representation over the 5 years has been Law, which has
declined from 9% of students in 2008-09 to only 3% of students in 2012-13. Science has
been the area that has grown in numbers (from 0% to 10%) in the last 5 years of funding.

While it is necessary to caveat that CGA funding is only one of several funding streams
available through Indspire, the decrease in Law and increase in Science students is an
interesting change over the last 5 years. As has been pointed out earlier, applications may
also be streamed to other scholarship and awards programs. So for example, a large
number of students enrolled in engineering programs can receive support from other
Indspire awards. In general, health professions have their own awards stream and
therefore do not tend to show up in the CGA funding statistics.

Key informants from within and outside Indspire were aware of the likelihood that
specific funding streams would capture particular subject areas. This was not considered
to be an issue as long as Indspire as a whole was able to provide adequate funding across
the subject areas that are being requested by applicants. A few informants also expressed

the feeling that Indspire was moving more towards skill and job specific subject areas for
students, in order to better prepare individuals for entering the workplace after the
completion of their studies (this was often referred to in association with the other
activities of Indspire to prepare students for employment such as mentoring, networking
and the Indspire Institute).

Indigenous Ancestry
First and foremost, Indspire’s activities and projects as they relate to the CGA are
intended to support all Indigenous students – Status Indian18, Non Status Indian, Inuit and
Métis (Section 2.2). Figure 15 below shows that the Government of Canada Post-
Secondary Scholarship Fund (CGA) is indeed supporting all Indigenous groups.

Figure 15: Total # CGA Fund Award Recipients by Academic Year Awarded by Indigenous Ancestry

       Year       Status First Non Status                 Métis             Inuit               Total
                    Nations First Nations

     2012-13            195                    36          297                16                  544

     2011-12            394                    81          342                15                  832

     2010-11            169                    39          167                 8                  383

     2009-10            130                    34          111                 4                  279

     2008-09            49                     73          134                 5                  261

The above table also indicates that while support for Inuit and Metis have held roughly
steady over the last few years (with some fluctuation), Status First Nation supports have
dropped dramatically in 2013, with Non Status First Nation supports gradually increasing
over the five years, with a more dramatic increase in 2013. Figure 16 below compares the
percentage of CGA recipients by Indigenous ancestry compared to the percentage of
Indigenous group in the overall indigenous population in 2013.

     For its own tracking purposes Indspire refers to Status and Non Status Indians as First Nation.

Figure 16: Indigenous ancestry of awardees (by year)

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The data show that, as in 2008, Métis are over-represented in CGA awards compared to
their share of the Indigenous population. Status First Nation students are represented at
approximately the same level as they are represented in the general population. This is
not entirely surprising as Status and Inuit post-secondary students have access to other
funding supports (for example through AANDC PSE) that Métis and Non-Status students
typically cannot access. The data therefore suggests that Indspire continues to provide
funding that addresses a huge gap in support for Indigenous students.

Interestingly, from the survey it is clear that Indigenous students of all heritages attach
the same levels of importance to Indspire funding as part of their ability to pursue post-
secondary education (90-100% identified Indspire funding as ‘important’ or ‘very
important’ in their ability to pursue PSE). In addition, interviewees were confident that
Indspire was able to access and provide funding across all Indigenous groups in Canada.

Awards by Geographic Regions
As an initial observation, the general geographical distribution of the CGA Awards
generally reflects those across the Indspire’s whole PSE program. Figure 17 below
breakdowns the distribution of CGA Fund awards by region in terms of numbers and

Figure 17: Number and percentage of CGA Award Recipients across Regions19

                          2013-12          2012-11          2011-10           2010-09        2009-08
Province /
Territory              Total      %     Total      %      Total      %      Total     %    Total     %
British Columbia        75      14%     123      15%       78      20%       42     15%     40     15%
Alberta                 91      16%     106      13%       40      10%       24      9%     34     13%
Saskatchewan            67      12%      94      11%       55      14%       34     12%     30     12%
Manitoba                81      15%     102      12%       37      10%       29     10%     45     17%
Ontario                122      22%     265      32%      114      30%      108     39%     67     26%
Quebec                  36       7%      32       4%       15       4%       20      7%     11      4%
New Brunswick           11       2%      10       1%        7       2%        1      0%      3      1%
Nova Scotia             16       3%      25       3%        2       1%        5      2%     10      4%
Prince Edward
Island                   1      0%        0       0%       0       0%        0      0%       0      0%
Newfoundland and
Labrador                23      4%       44       5%       11      3%        8      3%      13      5%
Yukon                    4      1%        6       1%        3      1%        3      1%       2      1%
Territories             9       2%        19     2%        17      5%        5       2%     4       2%
Nunavut                 9       2%         6     1%         1      0%        0       0%     1       0%
Other                   0       0%         0     0%         0      0%        0       0%     1       0%
Total                  545     100%      832    100%      380     100%      279     100%   261     100%

  “Other” refers to those recipients who were not classified in the Indspire data as being linked to a
province or territory.

Figure 18: Proportion of recipients by Province

Figure 18 demonstrates how the proportions of recipients across the five years being
evaluated relate to the most recent national statistics on total indigenous populations
taken from the 2011 National Household Survey.20

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Awards by Gender
The number of CGA awards for Indigenous women is on average just over three times
that of men (Figure 19). This reflects both the findings of the 2008 evaluation, and also
the more general trend in Indigenous PSE participation.21 As with the 2008 evaluation,
these figures do suggest that there is a challenge that goes beyond Indspire in how to
encourage male participation in PSE from Indigenous populations. Interestingly, the
Indspire Institute is looking to help address the needs of both educators and students in
secondary education, which may have the effect of leading to greater balance in gender of
application for PSE funding in the future.

Figure 19: Gender of awardees (by year)


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                                       %!$&-$%#   %!$%-$$#   %!$$-$!#   %!$!-!,#   %!!,-!+#

Indspire has been successful in providing funding to large numbers of Indigenous
students across the country and across Indigenous heritage, something that has (in
general) been increasing over the last five years. This includes funding for a wide variety
of subject areas from Fine Arts and other academic studies, through to more focused
studies in areas such as social work and engineering.

Indspire specifically attempts to ensure funding to as many students as possible, which
means that with a limited CGA funding pot, the amount of funding each student receives
decreases as the number of recipients of funding goes up (the average funding per student
in the last five years is down over $1,200 on the average funds identified in the 2008
evaluation). While geographic representation has improved since 2008, there are still
challenges in encouraging students from Quebec to participate in Indspire.

     Prepared by R.A. Malatest and Associates for the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada, May 2002.

The purpose of this aspect of the evaluation is to determine the effectiveness of Indspire’s
management of CGA funding, this section looks at:
       - Criteria and awards selection process
       - Promotion and outreach activities
       - Expected outcomes (including fund performance)

Criteria & Awards Selection
Survey respondents were asked to comment on the appropriateness of the eligibility
criteria for Indspire funding (Figure 20 and Figure 21). These findings suggest that most
awardees consider that financial need, academic performance, commitment to study and
connection to community are all valid and appropriate eligibility criteria.

Figure 20: Appropriateness of Eligibility Criteria








Figure 21: Appropriateness of Eligibility Criteria (2008 responses in brackets where applicable)

                                                Not at all                        Somewhat                                                                                Very
                                               appropriate                       appropriate                      Neutral                 Appropriate                  appropriate
 performance                                        2% (0%)                        13% (4%)                    11% (33%)                    45% (34%)                    28% (29%)
 Financial need                                     2% (0%)                         8% (3%)                     7% (17%)                    30% (24%)                    54% (56%)
 Connection to
 First Nation /
 Metis / Inuit
 community                                          3% (1%)                        10% (5%)                    16% (23%)                    36% (30%)                    35% (40%)
 Commitment to
 field of study                                     3% (0%)                         4% (0%)                    10% (17%)                    40% (33%)                    43% (50%)
 Talent (fine arts
 only)                                              5% (7%)                       10% (18%)                    39% (50%)                    35% (18%)                    12% (20%)
 contribution to
 studies                                                  8%                            13%                          25%                          39%                                 14%

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