Björn and Virginia Björnson Memorial Student Scholarship

$1000 Annual Scholarship Opportunity

Björn and Virginia Björnson were committed to working hard and encouraging those around them to ‘do all the good you can, by all the means you can.’ Their children hope that this award will support others to reach for the best in themselves.

Post-Secondary Education Scholarship for students with Specific Learning Disabilities (reading-dyslexia, writing-dysgraphia and/or math-dyscalculia)

Application deadline June 1st - ANNUALLY

up to $1000/year (could be awarded to same student for up to 3 years in a row with proof of full-time status)

with Specific Learning Disorder (reading, writing and/or math disability diagnosis) documentation

resume or video resume - showing great interest and commitment to achievement in school and/or extra curricular activities and/or leadership.

• student needs to have shown determination, self-advocacy and success in overcoming challenges

student must be attending a Manitoba full-time postsecondary institution (university, community college, a vocational or technical training program) in the upcoming school year.

Student must have been in full time high school the previous year

at least 2 references

send application to: or contact: 204 451 2112 for more information

2019 Scholarship Recipients

Congratulations to Grace C. on the second of three years that she has been awarded the Bjorn and Virginia Bjornson Memorial Scholarship. She has provided an update on her first year of university. We are so excited to be able to support her journey!

From Grace:

Thank you for the opportunity to share my story of my first year of University. So far it has been a story of hope for all high school students who struggle with dyslexia.

After struggling through both math and language arts in high school, I was somewhat worried how University would be. Although I am a student in Fine Arts, there are still reading, writing, and math requirements for me to get my degree.

Firstly, much of the “test pressure” of high school disappeared. Being in a University environment allowed me to work at my own pace, and earn as many marks as possible before exam time. I also found my professors to be flexible and understanding, and the University gave me the needed extra time accommodations fo exams.

Secondly, as my love is visual arts, studying Fine Arts has allowed me to finally have an education that focuses on my strengths. I enjoy going to school each day, and look forward to doing something that I am good at every day.

When attending high school, dyslexia often caused me to feel bad about myself and my abilities. In university, I no longer feel this way - I now no longer feel this way, and take pride in my abilities in my chosen field of study.

2019 Scholarship Recipients

Congratulations to Selina S. honorary recipient of the Bjorn and Virginia Bjornson Memorial Scholarship

Selina S. has an incredible story of resilience and hard work. She is an inspiration!

This is her story:

I am the youngest of five kids, and three of my siblings have dyslexia. My parents recognized my difficulties early on, and when I first went to kindergarten, I had a psych assessment, confirming my dyslexia diagnosis, in hand. The school requested another psych assessment in grade 2 because of the severity of my learning difficulties. At the time, the psychologist told my parents that I would never be academic. Mrs. Christine Van de vijsel, a reading clinician, wondered if I might have auditory processing disorder. The Audiologist confirmed her suspicion. I also discovered that I had vision issues including tracking and eye teaming difficulties.

I had an EA part time in elementary school. I was homeschooled in grade 6, and I attended St Mary’s Academy from grades 7-12. At the end of grade 11, I had another psych assessment completed, and I learned that I also had a math disability related to low working memory. I have taken physics, biology, chemistry and pre-cal math in high school. I have taken courses year-round, and I will graduate with 32.5 credits. School is tough, but I work very hard to be successful. In the fall, I will be attending the University of Manitoba, and I hope to one day be a school psychologist.

2018 Scholarship recipient

Congratulations to Grace C. recipient of the 2018 Bjorn and Virginia Bjornson Memorial Scholarship.

A 2018 graduate of Morris Collegiate in Morris, Manitoba, Grace was diagnosed in 2013 with a number of reading and language disabilities, including dyslexia. Despite the challenges this posed to her completing the English and Math portions of her high school career, she managed to graduate on time with an 83% GPA, and received direct entry to the University of Manitoba’s School of Fine Arts.

She hopes to both pursue a career as a visual artist and art teacher, and one day teach children with similar learning disabilities. Grace co-owns her own Art and Dance studio in Morris, and enjoys writing, drawing, and sculpting in her spare time. In the past, Grace has been a show dog Junior Handler, played soccer, figure skated, and done jazz, tap, and ballet dancing.

2018 Scholarship recipient

Congratulations to James U. honorary recipient of the Bjorn and Virginia Bjornson Memorial Scholarship!

From early on, reading and spelling were extremely challenging. I was diagnosed with dyslexia at the end of grade 2. That was the beginning of my understating of what dyslexia is. My parents researched the best ways to help me. Once I had an official diagnosis, my teachers became extra helpful in making accommodations for me.

By the time I got to junior high, I was learning to self-advocate. I was encouraged to be open to teachers and others about dyslexia and its’ challenges. In Senior High our school used iPads and that helped a lot for spell check and writing papers.

I excelled in athletics and was involved in every school sport, as well as playing club volleyball and most recently coaching club volleyball. I was chosen by Volleyball Manitoba as a Graduating All-Star this year.

I’ve had to study and work much harder than most of my peers but I have developed a good work ethic. I graduated from High School this year (Calvin Christian School) with honours. I received 5 scholarships as well as Athlete of the Year! This is after many years of hard work and academic challenges. I believe these challenges have made me a better, hard working and more compassionate person.

I am planning on going to University of Winnipeg in the fall to study business. I appreciate that they are very open with accommodations I will need for success.

I am thrilled to be a recipient of the Björnson Scholarship. Having a learning disability like dyslexia is difficult, but the challenges of overcoming the problems have helped develop my character and I will continue to strive to help others in any challenges they face as well.

2018 Scholarship recipient

Congratulations to Lyle M. honorary recipient of the Bjorn and Virginia Bjornson Memorial Scholarship!

Hi, my name is Lyle M. and I graduated from Margaret Barbour Collegiate Institute in The Pas, Manitoba in 2017. I graduated from high school with honours and my Level 1 Automotive Technician credential. Now I am going to study Industrial Mechanics at MITT this fall.

I was diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD in Grade 5. I struggled in the grades before that but this was when I knew my struggles had a name. Learning for me is never a problem but school can be. Dyslexia and ADHD make school a game of printed words on the page that everyone else knows the rules but I have to find other ways to figure out. I think it is worth it.