Irving Oil, Arthur L. Irving Family Foundation Gift $2M to Increase Access to Education at St. Thomas University

Campus Shot in Spring

St. Thomas University students will have greater access to post-secondary education with the transformative gift of $2 million from Irving Oil and the Arthur L. Irving Family Foundation for the establishment of new entrance scholarships.


Three full-tuition renewable entrance scholarships will be established at St. Thomas and when fully mature, the endowment will fund 12 scholars each year. 


Established in recognition of the dedicated leadership of retiring President Dawn Russell, a graduate of St. Thomas University (class of 1977) who led the university from 2011 to 2023, these scholarships will recognize academic excellence. In announcing the gift, Arthur and Sandra Irving spoke to Dawn Russell’s commitment to educational excellence.


“We are proud of our partnership with St. Thomas University to support students in achieving their dreams,” says Sandra Irving. “We congratulate and thank Dawn Russell for her vision at St. Thomas University to always put students first, to create meaningful connections, and foster a close-knit community.”


The inaugural three Arthur L. Irving Family Scholars will begin their studies at St. Thomas University in the fall of 2024.


“At Irving Oil, we believe strongly in the transformative value of education and supporting equitable learning opportunities for students,” says Irving Oil President Ian Whitcomb. “St. Thomas University provides an incomparable educational experience and we are proud to support students in accessing higher education.”


St. Thomas University Vice-President Academic and Research Dr. Kim Fenwick expressed thanks and gratitude from the university for this gift, acknowledging “the support for generations of students as a tribute to the leadership of Dawn Russell, and to the belief of Irving Oil and the Arthur L. Irving Family Foundation in the excellence in education at St. Thomas University and in New Brunswick.”


About St. Thomas University

Established in 1910, St. Thomas University is a primarily undergraduate, liberal arts institution with a full-time enrolment of 1,600 that offers a Bachelor of Arts, Applied Arts, Education, and Social Work degrees, and a Master of Social Work. Faculty members are distinguished teachers, researchers and scholars, and the university holds two Canada Research Chairs and a New Brunswick Health Research Foundation Chair. Distinguished alumni include former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, authors David Adams Richards and Sheree Fitch, and journalist Harry Forestell. 


About Irving Oil Irving Oil is a family-owned and privately held international energy company. For nearly 100 years, our commitment to doing good business has been grounded in our commitment to people – to our employees, customers, communities and partners. Founded in 1924, our mission is focused on our continued evolution to meet the changing needs of our customers. Specializing in the refining and marketing of finished energy products, we operate Canada’s largest refinery in Saint John, New Brunswick, and Ireland’s only refinery located in the village of Whitegate. We proudly serve customers with more than 1,000 fuelling locations and a network of distribution terminals spanning Eastern Canada, New England and in Ireland, operating under the Top brand. We are on a continuous journey of sustainable development, working to reduce our environmental footprint while continuing to provide safe and reliable energy to our customers. Named one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers for seven consecutive years, we are proud of our team and our longstanding commitment to our customers and our communities. Learn more at


Media Contacts:

St. Thomas University

Jeffrey Carleton

Associate Vice-President Communications



Irving Oil

Katherine d’Entremont

Manager, Corporate Communications

Cell: 506-654-7162