Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

Ryan Beedie launches $50-million education initiative

Real estate developer's philanthropic endeavour will provide $15,000 grants for students who take two-year diploma programs, and up to $40,000 for students who embark on four-year university degrees
Ryan Beedie made his announcement on his 50th birthday | Rob Kruyt

Real estate developer Ryan Beedie on November 13 announced his biggest philanthropic endeavour yet – Beedie Luminaries.

The initiative will create a $50-million registered foundation and non-profit society aimed at removing barriers to higher education for students who face financial adversity, and to support their long-term success, according to Beedie.

An initial cohort of 50 Lower Mainland students will receive grants in May 2019. The program plans to expand in the future to support up to 100 students throughout B.C. each year. The grants will enable them to continue their education after high school, be it in university, college or trade school. Grants are expected to be between $15,000 for a two-year diploma and $40,000 for a four-year university degree.

In the first year, Beedie plans to have his foundation dip into the capital that he is supplying. In future years it is expected that grants will largely come from interest on the principal of his donation.

Students may apply online at starting today and running until February 15. The first cohort will be announced in early May 2019, according to Beedie.

Initially, all grants will be to students who want to study at Simon Fraser University (SFU), University of British Columbia, Capilano University, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Langara College, Douglas College, British Columbia Institute of Technology and the Justice Institute of British Columbia.

Beedie is likely best known for the $22-million donation that he and late father Keith Beedie gave to SFU in 2011 to create the Beedie School of Business.

His announcement, on his 50th birthday, comes on the heels of another major philanthropic donation by a B.C. family.

The Louie family, through the London Drugs Foundation and the Tong and Geraldine Louie Family Foundation, announced October 30 that it was giving $6.5 million to St. Paul’s Hospital to help the facility build a cardiac centre that will be known as the Tong Louie Cardiac Wing when the hospital moves much of its operations from its current location on Burrard Street to a site near Main Street and Terminal Avenue.

Billionaire and Lululemon founder Chip Wilson told Business in Vancouver on October 24 to stay tuned for a major announcement from him next year that “is going to last 1,000 years and be substantial.”

He said that the project that he has in mind will take a lot of planning and may take 10 years to build. His donation, he said, will be an amenity that relates to the future development of the city.

Before the City of Vancouver spent $55 million dollars in 2016 to buy the old railway line near Arbutus Street from CP Rail to create the Arbutus greenway, Wilson had considered buying the railway line himself as a gift to the city's residents.

“That’s the kind of thing that we would be looking at,” he said.

[email protected]