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Recipient of the Danyel Barnswell Black Legends Bursary: FUNMI




University of Ottawa

Field of Study/ Major

BComm - Specialization in Management

Please share what the Bursary program has meant for you so far in your post-secondary journey (mentorship, financial aid, career assistance)

The Bursary program has been an absolute game-changer in my post-secondary journey, offering invaluable support in various aspects of my academic and personal life. Firstly, the financial aid provided by this scholarship has not only relieved a significant burden from my shoulders but has also been a source of tremendous relief for my parents. Their perpetual concern about my siblings and me entering post-graduate life burdened with student loans has been mitigated, allowing them to breathe easier knowing that my education is financially supported.

One of the most impactful aspects of this scholarship is that it has granted me the opportunity to attend a university outside of my city. The chance to immerse myself in a new environment has enriched my learning experience, exposing me to diverse perspectives and fostering personal growth. The scholarship's role in facilitating this transition has been crucial, opening doors that might have otherwise been closed due to financial constraints.

Beyond the geographical shift, the Bursary program has leveled the playing field for me compared to other students who might find textbooks and boarding easily accessible. This financial assistance has provided me with the tools and resources needed to compete on an equal footing, ensuring that economic disparities do not hinder my academic pursuits.

Moreover, the stability and peace of mind afforded by this scholarship have been immeasurable. With the financial aspects addressed, I can channel my focus and energy into what matters most – my education and the journey toward graduation. This stability has allowed me to approach my studies with a clearer mind, enabling me to make the most of the opportunities presented during my time in university. In essence, the Bursary program has not just been a financial aid initiative; it has been a life-changing force. It has transformed my educational trajectory, providing not only financial relief but also opening doors to new experiences and opportunities. This scholarship has given me the fighting chance I needed to pursue my academic goals without the constant worry of financial constraints, ultimately changing the trajectory of my life for the better.

⁠Any comments you would like to share about being matched with the Black Legend that your September 2023 Bursary was named after.

Being matched with Danyel King, the Black Legend named in my September 2023 Bursary, has been an incredibly inspiring and enlightening experience. Danyel King's journey as a Real Estate Developer and business mogul has left a lasting impression on me. Exploring his achievements and learning about his early ventures in entrepreneurship, successfully owning and managing various businesses, including those in automotive, finance, real estate, and community-based programs, is nothing short of awe-inspiring.

Danyel King embodies the epitome of success in the business world, and his story serves as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring individuals like me. His ability to navigate and thrive in diverse industries, managing multiple businesses simultaneously and reaping substantial dividends, showcases the rewards of dedication, strategic thinking, and a relentless pursuit of one's passions.

What particularly resonates with me is the broader perspective that being matched with Danyel King provides. It extends beyond the confines of post-secondary education, urging me to envision the abudance of opportunities awaiting in entrepreneurship, business, or any field I choose to pursue. Seeing his success not only motivates me to excel in my academic endeavors but also instills a sense of confidence that, with dedication and perseverance, I too can carve out a path to success.

Danyel King's story has expanded my horizons and encouraged me to look beyond the traditional trajectories. It's a reminder that success is not confined to a specific industry or profession, but rather, it's an outcome of passion, hard work, and a visionary approach. As I embark on my own journey, I carry with me the inspiration drawn from Danyel King's accomplishments, fueling my determination to strive for excellence and explore the vast opportunities that lie ahead.

2023 Academic/Personal Highlight

One of my standout moments in 2023 was the establishment and management of a club on campus at the University of Ottawa, rooted in principles of equity, diversity, and the cultivation of networking skills for students. I took the initiative to create and currently oversee the "BIPOC Business Society," a student organization that has grown to include 30 members.

The club focuses on fostering a supportive and inclusive environment for students from diverse backgrounds, specifically those who identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC). Our primary goal is to create a platform that not only encourages diversity within the business field but also provides students with opportunities to build essential networking skills.

Managing the affairs of the club has become a significant part of my academic pursuits, and it has been incredibly rewarding. The "BIPOC Business Society" has successfully organized various events, workshops, and networking sessions, bringing students together to share experiences, insights, and opportunities. The club has become a hub for connecting like-minded individuals who are passionate about promoting diversity and inclusion in the business world.

One of the highlights of the club's activities has been facilitating mentorship programs, where experienced professionals from diverse backgrounds provide guidance and support to our members. This not only helps students in their academic and career journeys but also creates a sense of community and solidarity.

The positive impact of the "BIPOC Business Society" extends beyond our immediate campus community. We actively collaborate with local businesses and organizations to promote diversity in the broader community. This initiative has garnered appreciation and support, contributing to the positive reputation of the club and its mission.

In summary, the establishment and management of the "BIPOC Business Society" have been a significant academic and personal highlight for me in 2023. It's immensely fulfilling to witness the positive changes we've been able to initiate, both within our university community and in fostering connections with the wider business world.


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