Kristy Burgess Memorial Award

The family and friends of Kristy Burgess wish to make a $1,000 award available to students in Yukon University’s Bachelor of Social Work program.


Photo of Kristy BurgessKristy Burgess wanted to make a difference, and she spent her life doing just that. A career in social work was a natural extension of who she was in her daily life: a gentle, yet strong, support to family, friends and, without hesitation, strangers.

Kristy moved with her family to the Yukon from British Columbia when she was a young child and spent her elementary school years in Teslin. Upon graduating high school in Whitehorse, she travelled throughout South America and Asia. Witnessing the lives of the underprivileged in these countries inspired her to pursue a career in social work.

Kristy was a good listener, caring and a natural social worker. Her practicum in Dawson City inspired her to work in other communities around the Yukon. After she graduated in 2013, she opted for positions in Watson Lake and Carmacks, and later as a youth probation officer in Whitehorse.  In addition to her day job, Kristy was passionate about yoga. In 2019 she went to India to become a yoga instructor. She dreamed of teaching yoga and before her passing she had begun teaching yoga to high school students and teachers.

She was tiny in stature but large in heart: more curious than judgmental, with a desire to fight for what is right. Kristy believed in the power of restorative justice and was preparing to do her Master’s degree in Social Work shortly before she passed away.

Kristy lived by her values and wanted to make the world a better place. Family and friends, forever impacted by her wisdom and compassion, often ask themselves, “WWKS - What would Kristy say?” Their hearts tell them that she would encourage us all to do what feels right and care for each other.

Kristy’s family and friends have established an endowment in her memory to support students seeking a career in Social Work.


  • Be registered in Yukon University’s Social Work Program
  • Have completed a minimum of 30.0 credit hours counting toward the Bachelor of Social Work degree
  • Provide a brief letter outlining:
    • the reasons you chose the Social Work Program
    • your plans for the future
  • Provide a reference letter outlining:
    • your potential to contribute to the Social Work profession
    • your volunteer activities and/or participation in community activities
    • how these activities will enrich your career in Social Work


Completed Student Financial Award Application Form
Typed essay
  • Reference Letter
Application deadline