Indigenous Law Student Scholarship

The pursuit of social justice is generational.

Indigenous Law Student Scholarship

As part of our commitment to supporting the development of Indigenous lawyers, First Peoples Law offers an annual scholarship to an Indigenous law student with a demonstrated commitment to serving and advancing the interests of Indigenous Peoples.

Everyone at First Peoples Law is extremely excited for the opportunity to support the scholarship recipients in their studies. We are confident they will make important contributions to defending the rights of Indigenous Peoples across the country.

We are pleased to introduce the 2023 scholarship winner, finalist and honourable mentions below. This year's winner and finalist received a $10,000 and $2,000 scholarship award, respectively. Check out our latest podcast episode for a conversation with last year's winner, Casey Caines, and this year's winner and finalist, Raven Richards and Sophia Sidarous, here or wherever you get your podcasts. 

Applications for this year's $10,000 scholarship are now open!

Click here to apply

Deadline: July 31, 2024

Download a poster for distribution here

Meet the recipients!


Congratulations to Anita Cardinal-Stewart and Mary McPherson!

Listen to our podcast episode featuring a conversation between Anita, Mary and 2020 winner Taryn Hamilton: Reclaiming the Law Part 3: Indigenous Law Students in Conversation.

Anita Cardinal-Stewart is Nehiyaw Iskwew, a proud member of Woodland Cree First Nations #474 situated on Treaty 8 territory and a 3rd-year law student at the University of Alberta where she is currently the President of the Indigenous Law Students Association, and also serves as the President of the National Indigenous Law Students Association and sits as a Student Representative on the Indigenous Bar Association.

Tansi, I am both humbled and honored to be a recipient of this year's scholarship from First Peoples Law who are doing amazing work in the legal field. I know I stand among so many other worthy and remarkable Indigenous law students from across the nation and each and every one of them deserves every recognition and every possibility of success and I am just grateful to be one of them. Law school is filled with many experiences, some of them good some of them not so good but when we have a strong community and we stand together as Indigenous law students, we can make a change to legal education and of the practice of law that will be in accordance with our laws and our ways. So, let's walk together in this journey towards Indigenous Nationhood and Sovereignty and pay it forward any chance we get. I promise to always do that and make each day, every day meaningful. Hiy Hiy Kinanaskomiti.

--Anita Cardinal-Stewart

Photo credit: Tristan Talalee


Mary is a daughter, sister, auntie, and an Ojibway member of Couchiching First Nation. She grew up in Thunder Bay, working as an artist while pursuing her undergraduate degree in Fine Arts and Indigenous Learning. Mary is currently in her third year of law at the University of Ottawa.

I am sincerely appreciative to be selected as a recipient of the First Peoples Law Scholarship. I am just one voice of many brilliant Indigenous law students, and I am comforted to see the various ways Indigenous law students are advancing changes for their communities. My people have a unique worldview that offers an entirely different way of understanding the world; however, we continue to face oppression, socio-economic disadvantage, and misperceptions of who we are. I look forward to continuing on a journey where I can assist in the wellbeing of my communities, and I am grateful for First Peoples Law’s support. Miigwetch.

--Mary McPherson

Photo credit: Sarah McPherson

Honourable Mentions

Laura Beaudry

Tansi, my name is Laura Beaudry and I am Nêhiyaw and Métis from Grouard, Alberta. I grew up on the Kapawe’no First Nation, also surrounded by my family’s Métis Settlements; Peavine and Gift Lake. I am a third-year law student at the Peter A. Allard School of Law. I look forward to working for Indigenous peoples, particularly where sovereignty and self-governance are concerned. This includes treaty rights, Métis law, and Aboriginal rights and title. I am honoured to stand alongside the winners of this award! Thank you to First Peoples Law for your recognition of strong Indigenous leaders and future lawyers.


Kaelyn Macaulay

Tanshi! My name is Kaelyn Macaulay and I am a Métis woman from Alberta. I am in the 3rd year of my BCL/JD studies at McGill University and I have been using the transsystemic focus to connect my studies with diverse Indigenous legal traditions. I aim to promote Indigenous perspectives on campus as the VP of Diversity and Inclusion for the McGill Business Law Association and as an active team member for Rooted, McGill’s Indigenous law journal. I am hoping to build my legal career as a bridge that fosters respect and prosperity between Indigenous interests and the corporate sector.


Brianna Morrison

Tawnshi! My name is Brianna Morrison, and I am a Métis Cree woman from Edmonton, Alberta. I am a first-year JD candidate at the University of Toronto. I chose to pursue law to be in a position where I can advance better standards of care for Indigenous Peoples within the Canadian healthcare system. My passion for health law is a personal one stemming from witnessing my father’s treatment by healthcare professionals. I aspire to be an advocate for patients’ rights and a facilitator for a greater incorporation of Indigenous traditional healing practices and medicines. I am immensely grateful to First Peoples Law for an honourable mention.