Lillooet man leaves an estate of $350,000 to women in STEM

A posthumous donation left to the TRU Foundation will go on to fund at least 12 bursaries for women in STEM programs

Beginning in 2021, women in TRU STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics/computer science) programs that demonstrate financial need will have the new opportunity to receive a new bursary, created from a recent and unexpected donation.

James Bain of Lillooet, B.C. donated $350,000 posthumously after passing in 2019. His estate was left to the TRU Foundation.

Unexpected to TRU, Bain made no indication of his planned donation to the foundation before his passing. His only stated wish was for his estate to fund bursaries for women in STEM.

“This was a significant gift the TRU Foundation had not anticipated,” said Greg Garrish, TRU Foundation past president. “Not only was it a surprise, but it couldn’t have come at a more crucial time. If only Mr. Bain had known how profound his gesture would be. We are honoured to establish this legacy in his name.”

This donation supports TRU’s Limitless campaign, intending to reach $50 million in private donations to support students and push educational innovation on campus alongside the university’s 50 anniversary.

“It’s important for us to give current and future students the opportunity to become skilled in the techniques and approaches required for career success,” said Faculty of Science Dean Greg Anderson. “To do that, we need to make education accessible. Donors play a key role in funding awards that make education more affordable.”

Had the university been aware of Bain’s intentions before his passing, the foundation would have wished to thank him directly. Garrish said the TRU Foundation is thankful to Bain’s friends and family for helping the university understand and respect Bain’s intentions.

“We’d also like to thank the many kind people living in Lillooet who ensured Mr. Bain’s legacy was honoured by sharing their stories, time and resources,” Garrish said.