Canada is a popular choice for students who are interested in studying abroad. The country is home to many excellent universities and provides job opportunities for new graduates. Plus, Canada is known for its friendly international relations and is very welcoming toward visitors from other countries.
Of course, you have to get accepted to a study abroad program first. You also need to be able to pay for it. Luckily, there are scholarships that can help.
Are you looking for scholarships in Canada? There are a few things you need to know before you make any financial commitments.
First, you should know the types of scholarships that may be available to you. Support may be provided by the government, private entities, or public foundations. You might qualify for a scholarship that comes from the university itself.
Whether or not you qualify for financial assistance could depend on your country of origin, your level of income, and your political status. It might also consider your field of study, your academic performance, and your previous level of completed education. (To provide your new school with a trustworthy statement of your academic achievements to date, including copies of your validated transcripts or a degree equivalency report, consider obtaining an official credential evaluation.)
Below you will find information about some sources of financial support that may be available to you in Canada. You will also be able to learn more about special programs like scholarships for refugees and funds dedicated to empowering women.
Government Scholarships in Canada
The Canadian government offers a generous number of spots for international students at national universities. Thankfully, they are just as generous about providing the funds to make it happen.
Scholarships for international students are managed by Global Affairs Canada (GAC). The institution not only offers independent scholarships, it also promote partnerships with other organizations—at an international level—so that Canadian students have access to a wider net of opportunities.
On the GAC website, you begin by entering your county of origin. Then you can begin browsing scholarships available through the government, as well as foundations and non-government organizations (NGOs).
The Canadian government offers scholarships for all levels of education: bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral studies. It also provides support for independent research and even contributes financial awards for academic achievements.
There are two unique programs for postgraduate and doctoral studies. The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship program supports students who are attempting to earn a master’s degree in engineering, natural science, health, the social sciences, or the humanities. For those who have a bachelor’s degree in health research, natural science, or social sciences, you can also look into a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship.
Download the Free E-Guide
Local administrators may also create their own opportunities to supplement those offered at a national level. Some provinces and territories in Canada offer scholarships in order to attract more international students to their cities.
British Columbia and Ontario, for example, offer programs geared toward engaging and empowering international youth. The first one offers scholarships and special programs (LearnLiveBC), and the newest is the Ontario Trillium Scholarships Program.
To find scholarships created by individual provinces, you may have the most success if you review the ministry of education websites directly. In most cases, financial support from this type of program will cover tuition fee and bursaries; however, each province sets its own rules and requirements for scholarships. In every province, you will find financial support opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate studies at every level.
NGOs and Foundations
There are many institutions outside of the Canadian government that also provide scholarships for international students. You will find support for every level, length, and type of academic program. They might be available through a private or public foundation, or they might be run through an NGO.
However, many organizations narrow their support according to a specific field of interest. For instance, the Jeanne Sauvé Youth Foundation helps young people join the next generation of public leaders, and the Trudeau Foundation offers scholarships in the humanities and social sciences.
Foundations and NGOs don’t usually cover a degree program’s entire cost of tuition. They might cover some parts of the tuition or give support for a particular time (like a semester). Before you apply, make sure you know how much assistance you can depend on.
University Scholarships in Canada
Universities also create programs to encourage students from all around the world to study and conduct research in Canada. Most of Canada’s 96 universities, both private and public, provide some kind of support for international students. Scholarships are organized according to the level of study, type, and field of research.
A few universities with financial aid that are worth considering include Dalhousie University in Halifax and Fairleigh Dickinson University in Vancouver. International students are eligible to apply for grants and awards from institutions of higher learning including the University of Calgary, the University of Waterloo (with international master’s degree and doctoral awards), and the University of Manitoba (with graduate fellowships).
Watch the Webinar
Scholarships for Refugees
Canada is known for promoting and supporting global unity. NGOs and the Canadian government have created programs for refugees who want to start or continue their education in a safe environment. By providing refugee youths with opportunities to continue their education, Canada aims to reignite hope for the future. Refugee scholastic support programs are designed to build the knowledge, skills, and experiences of this special population.
One of the most well-known scholarships for refugees in Canada is the Student Refugee Program (SRP), which is managed by the World University Service of Canada. It is a resettlement program that provides opportunities for refugees to continue their postsecondary studies. SRP is the only one of its kind to combine resettlement with opportunities for higher education, since most programs support only one of these two aspects.
Programs for Empowering Women
Canadian society is dedicated not only to empowering minorities, but also to bolstering equality. With this in mind, many scholarship programs are meant to provide women with greater opportunities—especially in areas of study where they are often excluded. For women to qualify for this type of scholarship, they might need to be completing research in a very specific field or otherwise satisfy the interests of the foundation that is providing the financial support.
One example is the FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship, which supports prominent women in the field of finance and encourages them to continue their education at the graduate level. One more program worth mentioning is the P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship. It provides scholarships for international women who are interested in getting a graduate degree from a university based in either the United States or Canada.
Leadership Development Opportunities
If you are interested in professional growth and gaining skills required to work across cultures, countries, and disciplines, then you should also consider training programs.
For example, the Jeanne Sauvé Public Leadership Program is an intercultural and international program based in Montreal. Each year, the foundation brings together a group of young leaders from Canada and around the world to live and work together in order to develop and share their passion for addressing globally significant challenges.
Undoubtedly, Canada offers a wide range of scholarships, training programs, and other opportunities for international students. Its government believes in a multicultural society, and it acts on these beliefs by ensuring that strong international candidates have the opportunity to explore their academic options in Canada.
For an up-to-date list of open scholarships in Canada, one resource you might consider is ARMACAD. You can also learn more about unique opportunities and special programs, and directly submit your applications.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of World Education Services (WES).