Grad creates new scholarship, mentors students

A new annual scholarship supported by a University of Guelph alumnus aims to boost opportunities for Black, Indigenous and people of colour (BIPOC) students in the Gordon S. Lang School of Business and Economics.

Jide Atilola, B.Comm. ’08, launched the Atilola Real Estate Scholarship in Business for BIPOC students in the bachelor of commerce program.

The student will receive a $1,000 scholarship, as well as mentorship from Atilola.

“These students are the future leaders of this world and to empower them with mentorship and a scholarship is a dream come true,” he says. “It’s important for students to know that the University and the community are supporting them.”

The first recipient of this scholarship, B. Comm. student Bila Souza, says the experience has been “incredibly meaningful.” Souza immigrated to Canada from the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2015 and enrolled in Lang’s accounting program in 2017. During their meeting, Atilola shared his experiences of being a Black aspiring business professional.

“His generosity has inspired me to help others and serve our community,” Souza says. “I hope that I will be on the list of future donors to help future generations to accomplish their dreams just as Jide has done with us.”

Atilola’s family immigrated to Canada from Nigeria in 1981. After graduating from U of G, he later returned to the Guelph area and now works as a real estate broker.