The Becky Tarbotton Memorial Scholarship supports a second year graduate student in the School of Community and Regional Planning (SCARP) at the University of British Columbia who demonstrates exceptional leadership and commitment in the fields of environmental and social justice.
Becky completed a Master’s degree at SCARP and during her time there her passion and commitment for environmental and social causes came together and were galvanized towards action. In her application to SCARP, she clearly expressed her reasons for choosing the school:
I have a great respect for knowledgeable generalists and fearless communicators, and I strive to join their ranks on the front lines of social change. The School of Community and Regional Planning, as in interdisciplinary and unique program will be a crucial step towards achieving that goal
SCARP’s vision and mission are focused on advancing sustainability, values that align closely with Becky’s. For this reason, her family and friends have chosen to support students at SCARP in furthering these important goals. Our aim is to raise $90,000 so that we can award $3000 annually in perpetuity.
In order for the Becky Tarbotton Scholarship to be awarded in perpetuity, the funds we raise will be invested in the UBC Endowment Fund. As of 2016, a portion of the $1.4-billion fund is invested in the Energy Industry. However, in 2012, UBC developed the Endowment Responsible Investment Policy which sets out the conditions under which disinvestment may occur. Although both UBC Students and Faculty voted in support of divestment in non-binding referendums in 2014, their will was not heeded by the University's Board of Governors. In February 2016, the board of governors instead chose to create a Sustainable Future Fund with a seed of $10 million from UBC’s $193-million Trek Endowment. When the Sustainable Future Fund has been set up, likely in early 2017, all funds raised for the Becky Tarbotton Scholarships will be invested there.
Becky would have have been highly supportive of the divestment movement at UBC, as well as other sustainability initiatives related to the Endowment Fund. The recipients of the scholarship will be expected to continue to advance this and other environmental and social justice causes on campus and beyond