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Saint Paul University opens the new Mauril-Bélanger Social Innovation Workshop and announces the creation of $500,000 in awards for future students of the Élisabeth-Bruyère School of Social Innovation

Who was Mauril Bélanger?

Mauril was a bridge builder: between rich and poor, blacks and whites, Québécois and Ontarians, francophones and anglophones, Indigenous people and settlers, women and men. His actions rooted him in our community; he was what the Ojibway would call an oshkaabewis, a person who “shows up” and helps. He has left a legacy of pride, of advocacy and of working with his community for the common good. For this we are grateful, for this we are thankful, and for this we pay him homage.

What better way to do so than by enabling access to post-secondary education for students who have demonstrated, as he did at an early age, a passion for building bridges, “showing up” and working for the common good?

And what better place than at Saint Paul University (SPU)? At SPU, our vision is to foster change and build a stronger, more inclusive and more humane society. We live this, in a bilingual environment, through our distinctive programs, our research and our commitment to being a hub founded on the values of social justice and innovation.

And through what better vehicle than the Mauril-Bélanger Social Innovation Workshop? This very special place is the heart of the Élisabeth-Bruyère School of Social Innovation. The School focuses on knowledge exchange that furthers the emergence of new organizational models, social practices and civic engagement methods designed to reduce various forms of social oppression and inequality, including poverty. Had this program been in existence when Mauril signed up for university, he may very well have been its first student.


$500,000 in awards for future students of the Élisabeth-Bruyère School of Social Innovation were announced during the opening of the Mauril-Bélanger Social Innovation Workshop.

Note that other awards are available for School of Social Innovation programs. For more details, click here.

Cohort and testimonial

I chose to do graduate studies in social innovation because it is a field that I consider very important for the future of our society. Social causes and management are subjects that greatly interest me. Also, I find that this program would complement well my B.A. in social communication to help me achieve my career objectives. I would ideally like to work for an NGO and fight for one of the many social causes that I am passionate about. With this formation, I am looking to learn skills to create my own future and make a change in society. I chose to take this program at Saint Paul University for several reasons. First, SPU is the first institution to offer this formation. Second, I became attached to and developed a feeling of belonging to this institution during my undergraduate studies in social communication. Finally, I want to complete my formation with passionate and human professors, such as those in the Élisabeth Bruyère School of Social Innovation at SPU.

- Gabrielle


The Saint Paul University Student Awards Program is generously supported by our exceptional donors. Through their collective philanthropy, they support a small university with a big vision for transforming society, one student at a time.

We would like to officially recognize these donors and express our gratitude for their selfless acts of generosity: the late Mr. Claude Bernard, Desjardins Group, Domicile Developments Inc., the late Mr. Marcel Lefebvre, the late Father Adrien Noël, and an anonymous donor. Your gifts will directly impact the future success of students at Saint Paul University, and in turn will enable them to become artisans of change through their future role in society.


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