About Our Academic Chapters

About the academic chapter CBNA-McMaster

CBNA-McMaster hopes to connect Black nursing students across all sites, levels and streams of McMaster’s nursing program. With the support of the CBNA, CBNA-Mac works diligently to equip Black nursing students with resources for successful academic journeys, ensure their equal access to opportunities, and inspire them to step boldly into their nursing careers. All while helping them with any challenges they may face.

Advocacy, empowerment and leadership are the three pillars of our Chapter’s mission.

About the CBNA-Mac president

Tsinat Semagn is in her fourth year of the nursing program at McMaster University. She has been involved with CBNA for two years, first as a secretary for the McMaster academic chapter. Now as the president, Tsinat has been leading CBNA-Mac and changing the narrative for the Black nursing students as McMaster along with her team members. 

Leading a team of eight motivated Black nursing students from levels 1 to 4 at the McMaster, Mohawk, and Conestoga sites. Together, they organized virtual mixers, a Black History trivia night, and an informative panel featuring new nurses from various backgrounds.

Outside of CBNA, Tsinat has been an undergraduate mentor with the Black Student Mentorship Program (BSMP) for two years. She has also been featured on a panel organized by McMaster’s Department of Family Medicine to discuss her experiences as a Black learner and advocate for equitable admission process programs in nursing at McMaster.

Tsinat’s tenacity is unwavering as she is leading the initiation of CBNA’s first academic undergraduate mentorship program at McMaster. Tsinat is a leader to watch. 

About the academic chapter CBNA-UAlberta

CBNA-University of Alberta (CBNA-UAB) is a chapter created by Black nursing students for Black nursing students. Along with the CBNA we are dedicated to the service of our community within the University of Alberta and to creating an enabling and capacity-building platform that propels nurses to academic and professional excellence in all spheres of society. 


About the CBNA-Alberta president

Hello! Ibukun Ojo is the founder of CBNA-UAB. When she heard that other universities had a CBNA chapter, she was first jealous (that she’d gone through her degree without one) and excited about the prospect of community building. She started the group because she wanted to create a space where Black students feel supported and uplifted by each other. A space, where we don’t have to talk ourselves out of our experiences -good, bad, and awkward – because we’re sharing with people who can relate to a part of our lived experience.

She loves her people and wants us to thrive! Ibukun has not been exposed to many nurses and healthcare professionals who look like her or have a similar culture that she could look to for inspiration.  A group like CBNA allows us to inspire one another. She would have appreciated this in the first few years of her degree, especially when feeling discouraged. Furthermore, she knows patients will benefit from more diverse care providers. A big part of equitable care and cultural competence is diversifying practitioners and increasing cultural representation – i.e. Black nurses advocating for them, BIPOC folk in leadership, etc. We all have a place in care because there are all types of patients who would be better understood by someone who lives like them. She is hopeful the CBNA group will empower a generation of nurses that embodies just that.

She sees CBNA-UAB hosting town halls and events that allow students to share their highs and lows with people who’ve experienced similar things. Moreover, Ibukun sees the group hosting mentorship programs and speaker series powered by CBNA to show students that they have a place in healthcare and there are people like them eager to usher them into the space. Most of all, Ibukun sees CBNA-UAB becoming a place for Black nursing students and allies to form connections. Connection starts as solidarity that hopefully blossoms into mutual support, empowerment, and friendship.

CBNA-UAB inaugural executive team is incredible, and Ibukun is grateful to work with them. They’re patient while working out the kinks of forming a new group. They’re passionate about their group vision and what they have the potential to become/create.

Finally, they set out to be great nurses, and Ibukun looks forward to seeing where their careers and connection with CBNA take them. This vision will almost certainly take years to execute, but with a team like this, Ibukun is confident that she will see it through.

About the academic chapter CBNA-Université de Montréal

CBNA-Université de Montréal (CBNA-UDEM) is a chapter created by francophone nursing students of all backgrounds. Given the lack of diversity in the faculty, CBNA-UDEM wants to create a safe environment where students of colour can grow together and feel seen and protected. Along with CBNA national, this academic chapter is dedicated to ensuring that Black nursing students have the resources they need to succeed. 


About the CBNA-Université de Montréal president

Shekinaah is a second year student at the faculty of nursing of Université de Montréal. She is the president of CBNA-UDEM and has been leading this chapter with 11 amazing nursing students. Jointly, they organized study dates, informational posts and collaborative events. Their purpose is to raise awareness about the struggle that plagues Black communities. 

Shekinaah is an energetic person who is willing to do anything to put a smile on people faces. Outside of CBNA, Shekinaah is devoted to her community and serves in different spheres. She worked alongside kids and the youth of her local church. Her purpose is to be a part of the change for people who who like her wants to grow in a world where there is equity and love. 

She is grateful to be apart of CBNA-UDEM and with her team she will be able elevate the Black voices in the healthcare community. She believes that future generation should be able do what they love with being stopped by theirs skin colors. She is fighting for a better healthcare system that actually represents the colors of the world we live in.

About the academic chapter CBNA-McGill

CBNA-McGill University (CBNA-McGill) is a chapter created by Black Francophone nursing students. Along with the CBNA national CBNA-McGill is on a mission to empower the local Black community by giving them to tools they need to be their own advocates in their care. Our goal is to establish ourselves as a stronghold for developing as nursing students the attributes of leadership and self-assurance that will enable us to be the future faces of Black healthcare excellence in the nursing profession.


About the CBNA-McGill president

Bryanna Jean-Jacques is now completing her second year of the Ingram School of Nursing’s bachelor of science program. Unlike the other chapter presidents, she’s never truly been a natural-born leader. Shy to a fault, she’s long struggled to express herself assertively for fear of disturbing the status quo. This all changed when she decided to establish a CBNA chapter at McGill University. CBNA national has allowed Bryanna to find her advocacy voice and be mentored and coached as a leader.

Bryanna has been steadfast in her resolve to both provide a setting where Black nursing students feel supported and empowered to give back to the Black community. They achieve this by sharing their expertise as nursing students and through their own lived experiences.
Together with her team of executives, CBNA-McGill has been able to establish a partnership with a local Haitian-led community center in order to hold a series of workshops on maternal and child health through a culturally competent lens. And this is only the beginning of a beautiful health promotion partnership.
She is grateful for how CBNA-McGill has forced her out of her comfort zone by pushing her to be assertive in her conviction to elevate Black voices in both community and healthcare settings. Bryanna is confident that the work that CBNA is doing across the nation will impact decolonizing nursing and healthcare.


About the academic chapter CBNA-York University

CBNA-York University (CBNA-YorkU) is a chapter created by Black nursing students. Given the great diversity at York University, the lack of representation in faculty and leadership positions is quite evident.  This prompted discussions with CBNA National on creating a space and environment which allows Black nursing students to feel motivated, empowered and supported. The whole prospect of this academic chapter is to enable Black excellence and address this prevailing issue.

About the CBNA-YorkU president

Temiloluwa Adeyemo is in her fourth year of the nursing program at York University. She is the president of CBNA-YorkU and one of the founding members of the academic chapter. 

Although York University was created in such a short span of time, the achievements made within such timeframe has been impeccable. From being recognized as one of the top chapters in the YorkU nursing program to its numerous successful events and mixers. The achievements within this program have allowed Black nursing students to feel supported while also encouraging them to see that they too can become leaders. 

Temiloluwa is hoping that this vision and goal would serve as a stepping stone to tackling the lack of representation in leadership positions while also showing Black nursing students that they are seen, heard and empowered to become leaders. It is important that these positions are diversified as it promotes representation and equitable care for patients.

Please join Temiloluwa and her team at CBNA-YorkU as they change the narrative for Black nursing students.


About the academic chapter CBNA-Western University

The Canadian Black Nurses Alliance Western Chapter is devoted to bringing awareness to racial inequality in healthcare, providing resources to Black nurses that will help them to overcome such inequality, and creating a supportive community in which undergraduate and graduate Black nurses can mentally, academically, and socially thrive. We value the empowerment and confidence instilled in Black students when they know they have a community cheering them on.

Our chapter is determined to provide social, financial, and academic support tuned to the Black experience as we collaborate with other CBNA Chapters and Black clubs at Western to reach as many Black nurses and students as possible. We aspire to establish pillars of appreciated vulnerability, social justice, emotional validation, and academic and career success within our Black community. We are incredibly grateful that CBNA has provided the opportunity to do so.

About the CBNA-Western president

Paula Ginikachi Umeh is in her 3rd year in the collaborative BScN Program at Western University. She succeeds Gail Lywood, an aspiring graduating nursing student who established the academic chapter in 2022 and left large shoes to fill. Paula is grateful to be a part of an inspiring organization and is determined to help fulfill the mission of CBNA: “to serve, mentor, and empower Black Canadian Nurses through the power of community”. She is confident that she can support this mission by exercising the leadership and collaboration skills that she acquired throughout her 4 years of experience in social justice and support for Black students as an executive (3 years) and general member (1 year) of her high school’s Black history month team.

She was recognized for her efforts by Ontario’s Lieutenant Governor, Elizabeth Dowdeswell, and the Ontario Heritage Trust when she was awarded a Youth Achievement Award at the 2020 Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Awards, then featured in an article on Toronto.com.

Wanting to become more involved in advocacy, community building, and leadership, she ran for and won grade 11 and 12 representatives on her high school’s student council and then year 1 and 2 representative on the Western Fanshawe Nursing Student Association at Western University on which she is also co-VP Events for her 3rd year.

When she is not participating in student politics, she has a passion for charity which encouraged her to start an unofficial non-profit organization called UntitledBlessings (@untitledblessings on Instagram). She wishes to be a part of a non-profit organization after her undergraduate studies and use her Nursing degree to help people around the world, especially in her home country Nigeria.

Coming from Nigeria, Paula had no concept of racism until she got to Canada. After witnessing her colleagues experience discrimination from patients and other colleagues in healthcare, Paula understands the negative effects that racism within healthcare can have on black nurses. She demands change and is determined to make it. Paula is excited to work with her team members to build a strong community at Western that will benefit future, past, and present black nurses, give them a safe space to express their valid feelings and opinions and instill hope that racial inequality in Canadian healthcare can be overcome.

We all bleed the same colour and health care is an environment in which this is even more apparent. It is time people start acting like it.

About the academic chapter CBNA-Trent

Along with the CBNA national, CBNA-Trent promotes the welfare and interests of Black nursing students at Trent University through the provision of support, activities, publications, social forums and events. It additionally acts as a bridge between students and faculty; providing insights into cultural competency that can be applied in the classroom and clinical settings. At its core, it serves as a safe space for Black nursing students to come together and discuss their difficulties, successes, and experiences, both in and out of the classroom. CBNA-Trent events often center around much-needed mentorship from Black nursing professionals and increasing awareness of issues faced by Black nurses & nursing students. Through executive and committee roles, CBNA-Trent members may partake in invaluable, real-world opportunities to practice leadership skills that allow them to gain confidence and expertise.


About the CBNA-Trent president

Ifeatu Harris-Eze is the President and a co-founder of CBNA-Trent. She offers a unique perspective with her background in communications that motivates her passion for collaboration and knowledge of I/O Psychology that guides her personnel management. Likewise, her 12+ years of experience in graphic design have inspired her contributions to CBNA National, such as the creation of CBNA’s updated logo system and Black History month logo rendition. With an arsenal of experience from her previous roles at non-profit organizations, including Pro Bono Law Alberta, Equal Voice Calgary, Miss Black History Month Alberta, the African Caribbean Student Association of the University of Calgary, and the Nigerian Canadian Association of Calgary – to name a few; she is more than confident in her ability to lead Trent University’s first and only association for Black Nursing students.

Upon acceptance into the Compressed Nursing Stream at Trent University, she immediately took notice of the lack of Black representation in her program. In a chat containing the majority of students in her cohort, the number of Black students could be counted on one hand. Upon further exploration, she found there to be no association dedicated to providing a support network for Black nursing students. Discussions with her peers revealed that the need was present. One thing became evident: CBNA national and CBNA-Trent was the most befitting remedy to solve this problem.

As a leader, Ifeatu firmly believes that the impact of Black nursing student associations cannot be overstated. From promoting cultural competence to providing a support network, she is dedicated to ensuring that CBNA-Trent achieves its mandate of equipping Black nursing students with resources that promote a successful academic journey and a career of fulfillment.

Images from the CBNA-Mac  

Images from the CBNA-UAB 

Images from the CBNA-UDEM 

Images from the CBNA-McGill 

Images from the CBNA-YorkU 

Additional information

To find out more about CBNA-McMaster and CBNA-UAB please follow them on Instagram and/or Linkedln

Canadian Black Nurses Alliance
Canadian Black Nurses Alliance
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