The Canadian Japanese-Mennonite Scholarship is a $2,000 scholarship available to a student who is Canadian or a landed immigrant enrolled in a graduate degree program in Canada, doing research that will assist the protection of minority or human rights. The scholarship is co-sponsored by Mennonite Central Committee Canada and NAJC.
The scholarship was created as a tangible symbol of cooperation between Japanese Canadians and Canadian Mennonites subsequent to a formal apology that was offered to Japanese Canadians by Mennonite Central Committee Canada on behalf of Canadian Mennonites. It is intended to assist the protection of minority and human rights in Canada and to reduce the potential for abuse of cultural minorities such as that suffered by Japanese Canadians during World War II.
In 1984 MCC issued an apology, on behalf of Canadian Mennonites, to Canadian Japanese for abuse suffered during World War II. This scholarship is a symbol of cooperation between the two groups.
The $2,000 scholarship funds research on the protection of minority and human rights in Canada in order to reduce the potential for abuse of cultural minorities.
The National Association of Japanese Canadians and Mennonite Central Committee Canada co-sponsor the scholarship.
To be eligible students must be:
- Enrolled in a graduate program the fall of the following year
- A Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or international student studying at a Canadian university in Canada
- Doing research that will help protect minority or human rights in Canada
Applications must be received by April 1.
Education - Newcomers
Michelle Lam, PhD Student of University of Manitoba.
History of Canada - Colonialism
Nicole Yakashiro, MA Student of University of British Columbia.
Public Health & Health Systems – Work & Health
Sonja Senthanar PhD student at University of Waterloo (Ontario). Her research will examine labour market barriers for refugees in Canada. Specifically looking at the disadvantaged position of women refugees due to the effects of outdated gender role expectations, opportunities to work, and these effects on power dynamics with respect to economic, social, & family responsibilities. This work will use a feminist grounded theory and focus on the experience of recent Syrian refugees versus that of other immigrant classes & refugee populations.
Political Studies – Philosophy
Rebecca Wallace PhD student at Queen’s University (Kingston, ON). Her research will examine ethnic diversity and its impact on attitudes toward the welfare state. Specifically the differences in support for Indigenous and immigrant recipients of welfare in Canada and media’s effect on public opinion. This research aims to uncover Canada’s growing problems with multicultural management, on-going colonialism, and covert racism.
Psychology – Social & Personality
Matthew Quensel PhD student at University of Manitoba. His research will examine how portrayals of disadvantaged groups (i.e., First Nations) as either helpless or passive verses active agents in change, affect the amount and type of help offered by members of advantaged groups (i.e., white Canadians), as well as the psychological effects of these portrayals on members of disadvantaged groups themselves. Focusing on improving relationships and collaboration between these groups for the purpose of identifying interventions that will lead individuals to actively support and work towards social justice.
Katelin Neufeld PhD student at University of Manitoba. Her work focuses on First Nations access to clean water & adequate sewage services. Her research will use social psychology to develop and test evidence-based interventions that overcome barriers to social change, and in turn, increase support for First Nations water rights. Underlying her work is the notion that public support for addressing First Nations water rights cannot grow without public awareness and education.
Jill Bucklaschuk PhD student at University of Manitoba. Her work will bring attention to the experiences of temporary migrants in Manitoba, which is an issue closely related to the protection of human, citizenship, social, and minority rights. The purpose of the thesis is to provide needed insight into these human rights and social justice issues by investigating the migration experiences of temporary migrants living and working in Manitoba and their experiences of social exclusion. (Electronic copy with MCC records department.)
Sonia Singh MA student at York University. Her work will focus on the access to citizenship, labour, and human rights protection for temporary foreign worker in Canada. Her research will focus on three case studies in order to analyze organizing strategies and outcomes of advocacy campaigns for the rights of migrant workers and community advocates.
Education & Human Ecology – Refugee Family Studies and Migration issues
Stephanie Yamniuk PhD student at University of Manitoba. Her research looks at the interaction between refugee families and teachers within the Canadian school system. It will provide insights into the work of teachers in supporting children from refugee families, and the ways in which parents can and should be involved in order to promote diversity, healthy integration and well-being for their children.
Political Studies – Canadian Politics/Gender & Politics
Erin Tolley PhD student at Queen’s University. Her research looks at the experiences of racial minorities in Canadian Politics. It will provide new insights into the factors that affect racial minorities’ representation in Canadian politics, as well as recommendations for narrowing the gap.
Rian Mercer MA student at University of Victoria. Her work will focus on exploring the re-victimization of Indigenous residential school survivors who have received monetary compensation, and examine whether a sustainable economic and social development plan has developed along with that. Her goal is to suggest better models.
Anthropology – Health
Andrew Galley PhD student at McMaster University. His research examines the social interactions between Canadian medical care-providers and refugees, and how these experiences are coded into self-narratives of displacement, exclusion, and healing. He will be working with Colombian refugees living in Ottawa.
Psychology – Social Psychology
Jillian Banfield PhD student at the University of Waterloo. Her research will focus on what strategies will be most effective when disadvantaged minority groups solicit help from advanced majority groups. She will be focusing specifically on Aboriginal Canadians.
Education: Language, Culture and Teaching
Akane Nishimoto Masters of Education student at York University. Her research will critically examine existing multicultural children’s books, and how inaccurate representations of minority cultures deepens marginalization. She will also look at the effects of multicultural literature on equitable learning experiences.
Interdisciplinary Contemporary Arts
Cindy Mochizuki MFA student at Simon Fraser Univesity. Her project will create virtual and imagined memorial sites, incorporating a series of animated drawing installations and small public art works that document a series of poetic responses generated from interviewing a Japanese community that was repatriated to Japan during WWII and returned to Canada years later.
Comparative Literature & Film/Media Studies
Sheena Wilson Ph.D student at University of Alberta. Her thesis analyzes how Japanese Canadian Women writers and filmmakers address war time injustice. She address texts and Films that use the II WW Japanese Canadian Internment and relocation as a central logic to mediate and re-articulate self and communal identity.
Hijin Park Ph.D student at University of Toronto. Her work will focus on the flow of people and capital between the Pacific Rim and Canada. Her work will examine how these global movements, both wanted and unwanted, are shaped and produced by Canadian government policy.
Fiona MacDonald Ph.D student at the University of British Columbia. She will focus on minority rights within multiculturalism.
Shirley Hiebert Ph.D student at the University of Manitoba. Carrying out research in Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation as a means to enable First Nations women to have a voice in the way birthing practices are carried out in their community.
Kathleen Anzenavs Masters of Arts student at the University of British Columbia. Her Master’s Thesis is on the topic of the Vancouver Japanese Language School. She will look at the processes of reclaiming ethnicity and ethnic history among second and third generation Japanese-Canadians in the Vancouver area, and the important role the language school has played in this process.
Sociology and Equity Studies
Mitsuho Michelle Ariga doctoral student at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto. Her dissertation will examine citizenship through transnational adoption in a way of illustrating systematic exclusions, shortcomings and potential of human rights abuse of international and national citizenship regimes.
Adult Clinical Psychology
Iris Sharir is from Vancouver completing a PhD at the University of Windsor in cross-cultural psychology and the experiences of ethnic minorities in Canada. Her dissertation research will examine mental health issues among adolescents who have immigrated to Canada from Asia.
Sociology of Law
Dawna Tong doctoral studies at the University of British Columbia. Her research specifically focuses on the social inequality of racial and ethnic minorities in Canada and how the law can play a pivotal role in promoting social change and social justice. (Copy in MCCC library.)
Sociology in Education
Mona Gail Oikawa is a graduate student at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (University of Toronto). Her thesis will examine how two generations of Japanese Canadian women remember and understand the internment. Oral testimonies and archival documents form the basis of research for this historical representation and analysis.
Sociology & Anthropology
Kirsten Emiko McAllister is a graduate student at Carleton University. The overall intent of her research project is to show how the Japanese Canadians community has attempted to change the societal conditions that lead to the persecution they experienced during and after WWII.
Jason Lee is a graduate student at the University of Calgary. His thesis focuses on the topic of ethnicity and ethnic identity, examining the internalization of ethnicity (the formation of an ethnic identity) in conjunction with the transference of values between generations of an ethnic group. (Copy in MCCC library.)
Civil Law/Common Law/Social Work
Susan Drummond is a graduate student at McGill University. The focus of her research is legal pluralism. She is working with the Inuit of Northern Quebec as a Canadian cultural minority, her research will be relevant to a more general understanding of how explicit and subtle forms of state abuse have served to dominate and oppress cultural minorities.
Christina Gabriel of Toronto, Ontario. Her dissertation research at York University focuses on the role of the Canadian state in aiding and abetting the social construction of racism and sexism; the different kinds of group response, most notably those by women of colour, to local forms of institutional sexism and racism.
Janet McLellan of Scarborough, Ontario. Her post graduate research at York University is entitled: Many Petals of the Lotus: redefinition of identity as reflected in belief and practice of Buddhists in Toronto will attempt to describe how members of a minority culture redefine their religious beliefs and practices in order to integrate with the dominant culture. (Copy in MCCC library.)
Cheryl Thomas Fielding of Victoria, British Columbia, is a student at University of Victoria. She is taking a very creative and exciting approach to a study of pre-war Japanese Canadian life in British Columbia. Her work will be based on personal interviews with Japanese elders and photographs taken by Japanese photographers between 1910 and 1930.
Louis Dion graduate student at the University of Manitoba. His area of study focuses on Canadian-Asian relations, both international and national, and the local consequences of these relations. His thesis is entitled "The Resettlement of Japanese Canadians in Manitoba, 1942-1948". (Copy in MCCC library.)
Sally Ito is a graduate student at the University of British Columbia. She is completing a Fine Arts Master’s degree with particular emphasis on creative writing. Her "objective of creating art–I write about my particular experiences and circumstances which are Japanese Canadian ones". She plans to translate the poetry of Kazuko Shiraishi, a Canadian-born Japanese poet. She will be doing some research at Waseda University in Japan.
East Asian Studies
Fay Ode graduate student at the University of Toronto. Her thesis was an "exploration of the word done by Sato and pioneer language educators long before heritage language education was popular in Canada. It is also an overview of the indigenous racism that eventually led to the forcible closing of Japanese language schools in 1941". Her thesis is entitled "Tsutae Sato: Sensei For All Seasons".
Winston Kiang (First recipient of the award) of Vancouver, BC, graduate student at British Columbia Law School. His paper entitled "The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and Minority Rights: An Overview of Pre-and Post-Charter Eras". (Copy in MCCC library.)