Local designers Jamie LeBlanc and Luc Crawford launched a scholarship intended for artistically inclined students Dec 1 at the Arc Hotel. The Designs By 2 owners drew over 300 people to the launch and patrons were encouraged to donate, with cash going directly towards the scholarship. Their first fundraiser raised $1000.
Half of the Crawford Alexander Design Scholarship (Alexander is LeBlanc’s given first name) is geared towards queers wishing to add a splash of colour and creativity throughout the world. As for the other half?
“We will definitely not award the scholarship to anybody that is not [queer] friendly,” says LeBlanc.
Crawford and LeBlanc were spurred into action when one of their queer friends was searching for a design scholarship and consistently came up empty-handed.
When LeBlanc contacted design schools where the scholarship could potentially be offered, he says they were indicated they wouldn’t promote a scholarship aimed at one particular group of students.
Rather than fight it, the pair decided to make some money available to both gay and straight students — in order to get schools to promote the new award.
“I’ve sat on many gay boards from different cities,” says LeBlanc. “I’ve always come from the philosophy of inclusion, not segregation. In everything we do in life, we are inclusive promoters.”
Jer’s Vision will be managing the scholarship fund and additional donations can be made directly to Jer’s Vision or by contacting Designs By 2.