Three first-year students at Waterloo Engineering are starting their studies with support from a technology giant.

Shivam Jindal of Mississauga, Mulei Mao of Scarborough and Sophia Nguyen of Toronto are among the first 10 recipients of $30,000 scholarships from Amazon.

The new Amazon Future Engineer Canada program was created to help graduating high school students in underserved and underrepresented communities cover their university tuition.

In addition to $7,500 a year for up to four years, recipients selected on the basis of financial need, academic performance, and leadership in school, work and community activities are eligible for a paid summer internship at one of the company’s Canadian Tech Hubs.

“This inaugural Canadian Amazon Future Engineer scholarship class has demonstrated a broad range of academic and extracurricular achievements,” Susan Ibach, head of the program, said in a media release. “Amazon is thrilled to support them during this next chapter of their education.”

Jindal and Nguyen are studying software engineering, while Mao is in the mechanical and mechatronics engineering program at Waterloo.

The scholarships are open to students across the country planning to pursue studies in computer science or a related field at a Canadian university.

In addition to providing scholarships and internships, Amazon Future Engineer gives elementary, middle and high school students from diverse communities around the world access to project-based computer science education, using code to make music, program robots and solve problems.