10 Leading Undergraduate Scholarships in Canada

Canada! The home of world-class academic institutions and scholarships. Here, all the information on undergraduate scholarships in Canada has been brought together to help you find the scholarship that is a perfect fit for you and also to make this your final stop for searching for the scholarships named above.

I am so excited to be writing this blog post for three main reasons. Firstly, I enjoy writing about Canadian scholarships and universities. Secondly, the wealth of information I have provided here regarding the leading undergraduate scholarships in Canada will make this blog your one and final stop as a student looking for scholarships in Canada, lastly, I get the utmost satisfaction knowing that I, indirectly, contributed/supported you in achieving your academic and career goals.

Since the topic of this blog does not specify whether the scholarships are for international students, domestic students, or both which may have started to confuse you already. Before that confusion eats deep, I should let you know here and now that the undergraduate scholarships in Canada curated here are for international and domestic students.

And how would you know which is which or how to differentiate them?

Well, you do not have to go through that stress. You are here to simply read through the undergraduate scholarships in Canada while curled up on your sofa, see the one that suits you, and click a link to apply.

For each of the scholarships I will be writing about, I will indicate whether it is for only international students, domestic students, or all students. Is that clear?

Of course, the requirements for international and domestic students vary by the scholarship providers be it a college or university, an organization, or an NGO but trust me to provide the appropriate details.

However, it would still be worth noting that we have recently published blog posts on the athletic scholarships in Canada for international students and on the best scholarships in Canada for international students which are solely for international students to check out.

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How to Apply for Undergraduate Scholarships in Canada

Canada is one of the countries that offer the most scholarships to students at undergraduate and graduate levels. Whether you get a partly or fully-funded scholarship in Canada, it will not just offset the cost of studying in Canada but it is also an exciting opportunity that will open other doors of opportunities for you.

However, looking for and applying for undergraduate scholarships in Canada can be a hassle but it does not have to be for you because you are here now. Below is a step-by-step guide to applying for undergraduate scholarships in Canada:

Step One: Research for Open Undergraduate Scholarships in Canada

This is the first step in applying for an undergraduate scholarship in Canada, and usually, the first step is always the hardest but it doesn’t have to be so for you because just further below you will find a section with information on all the undergraduate scholarships in Canada.

This first step is where you will research available undergraduate scholarships in Canada. You can do this research online or by talking with your high school teachers or college professor but I recommend doing both for faster and more accurate results.

Step Two: Satisfy the Scholarship Eligibility Criteria and Requirements

The main thing that sets every scholarship apart is not the provider or how much it is offering but rather it is the eligibility criteria and requirements. This is what makes it go to deserving students. So, before applying for any undergraduate scholarship in Canada, carefully go through the criteria and requirements then be sure that you satisfy or meet all that they are requesting.

These requirements and eligibility criteria usually vary by the scholarship providers, students’ residency status i.e. whether you are a domestic or international student, and your undergraduate program. If you apply for a scholarship whose eligibility criteria you do not meet, then you have wasted your time applying because your application will not even be considered.

The general eligibility criteria for undergraduate scholarships in Canada are:

  • Applicant must have completed high school and hold a high school diploma, GED, or its equivalent.
  • Have an excellent academic record with a minimum high school CGPA of 3.0 on a scale of 4.0
  • Demonstrate leadership potential or abilities
  • Active participation in extracurricular activities, community volunteering, or both
  • Have an intent to apply or be accepted into a Canadian university or college to pursue an undergraduate degree program.
  • Have a valid study permit or student visa (for international students)

Note that these eligibility criteria I have listed are general, each scholarship provider may add to the list or remove from it. Eligibility criteria are specific to every scholarship.

Step Three: Apply Early

This is not just an important step in applying for scholarships but it is a highly resourceful tip. When you apply for a scholarship early, it gives the scholarship officials or committee a lot of time to inspect and assess your application before the rush begins. When the rush begins, the officials will not take their time in assessing a scholarship application leading to high rejection rates.

So, try as much as you can to send in your application within the first one or two weeks that the scholarship application opens. Applying a few days to the deadline is likely to get your application rejected so it is not even worth the risk.

Step Four: Prepare Scholarship Application Documents

Start gathering the necessary documents required to apply for a scholarship, and prepare them in advance for when the application opens. This will also help you apply early because you have prepared ahead of others.

Generally, the scholarship application documents that are usually required are:

  • Transcripts from previously attended institutions
  • Letters of recommendation
  • English language proficiency test score (for international students who are non-native English speakers)
  • Essay
  • Study permit or student visa (for international students)
  • Proof of enrollment into a Canadian university
  • Proof or record of extracurricular activities or volunteering
  • Proof of financial need
  • Health record
  • Clear passport photograph
  • Document of financial statement

Note that these scholarship application documents are general, scholarship donors may add to the list or remove from it so check the required applications to know what you need.

Step 5: Apply for the Scholarship

This step is the easiest and where everything you’ve been working on finally comes together. Scholarship applications are usually done online and the forms are simple to fill. They will require your details and then you will upload the documents required by the scholarship donors. Examples of the documents that may be required are listed in step four above.

Most, if not all, scholarship providers usually provide the process of applying for their scholarships on their website so that the process can be seamless for applicants.

Step Six: Prepare for Interview

Most scholarship providers usually interview shortlisted candidates for the scholarship. If there will be an interview after application, it should be mentioned on the scholarship website and you should practice and prepare for the interview. Not all scholarships require an interview.

But for those who interview, it means that you have been considered for the scholarship by the scholarship committee and awaiting final selection. The result of your interview with the scholarship committee is usually the final phase or step before you are awarded the scholarship.

And that concludes the steps to apply for undergraduate scholarships in Canada.

Now, let’s dive into the main topic.

undergraduate scholarships in Canada

Undergraduate Scholarships in Canada

1.     The Lester B. Pearson International Student Scholarship

As you may have already guessed, this scholarship is for international students only so domestic students will have to sit this one out.

The Lester B. Pearson International Student Scholarship is an annual scholarship offered by the University of Toronto, one of the best universities in Canada and among the top universities in the world, therefore, the university must have accepted your admission application to pursue an undergraduate degree program for you to be a recipient of this award.

This scholarship is awarded annually to outstanding students from around the world who have excellent academic performance, creativity, and leadership potential. However, there is an emphasis on students who have made an impact on the life of their school and community, and also have the potential to contribute positively to the future global community.

The U of T’s Lester B Pearson International Student Scholarship will cover tuition, books, incidental fees, and accommodation for four (4) years, and only 37 Pearson Scholars are selected. This is one of the best scholarships in Canada for international students at the undergraduate level.

Students who are interested in this award have to be nominated by their school guidance counselor. Once they are nominated and have applied to U of T, the student will receive a personalized, secure link to the scholarship application.

The link below contains more information on the application process, the deadlines, integrity, fraud, privacy notice, and resources for guidance counselors on nominating students.

Scholarship Link

2.     General International Undergraduate Scholarships – The University of Alberta (U of A)

The “International” should not break your heart. This scholarship is for international and domestic students alike, and here is how it works.

U of A has two main categories of undergraduate scholarships under the General International Undergraduate Scholarships; Admission-Based Scholarships and Application-Based Scholarships.

The Admission-Based Scholarship does not require an application. All students applying for undergraduate studies at U of A are automatically considered for this scholarship. Every student is assessed based on their high school admission average and the time they received an offer of admission at U of A. Those who are eligible for the award will be contacted.

There are three different scholarships under the Admission-Based Scholarship namely:

  • International Admission Scholarship – award up to CAD 5,000 to top students depending on their admission average.
  • Regional Excellence Scholarship – awarded to top students from certain regions based on their admission average. Also CAD 5,000.
  • Gold Standard Scholarship – $6,000 is awarded to the top 5% of students in each faculty depending on the admission average.

Next is the Application-Based Scholarships which has various scholarships that students may be eligible for but rather than going through the stress of looking for which of the scholarships you are eligible for, you will fill out only a single scholarship form which will then be used to match you across a range of available scholarships.

The factors used to select the winners are background experiences, academics, and interests. You will receive the reward for any of the scholarships that match your application. International and domestic students are eligible for both the admission and application-based scholarships.

Scholarship Link

3.     CIFAR Inclusive AI Scholarship Program

While this scholarship is not only for undergraduates, I still have to add it to the list so that undergraduates can also benefit from it.

The CIFAR Inclusive AI Scholarship Program is one of the best artificial intelligence scholarships in Canada. From the title of the scholarship, it is clear that it is only for students who want to pursue programs in the field of AI.

CIFAR provides this scholarship as part of its mission to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion in the Canadian AI ecosystem and globally, to ensure that AI is developed and deployed to the benefit of all citizens of the world.

The CIFAR Inclusive AI Scholarship Program is every year and through this program, hundreds of Canadian and international students from high school to postdoctoral fellows, undergraduates included, are offered training opportunities to help them develop real-world skills, expertise, and networks they need to be successful in their future careers.

Therefore, if you are an international or Canadian student with an interest in AI, you should consider applying for the CIFAR Inclusive AI Scholarship Program.

Scholarship Link

4.     Angelo and Frank Agro Undergraduate Scholarship

The Angelo and Frank Agro Undergraduate Scholarship is donated by The Frank Agro Estate to students accepted into the University of Guelph to pursue a full-time undergraduate program and demonstrate the most active involvement with 4H clubs. Applicants will be considered based on the length of their membership in 4H, leadership role(s) in support of 4H, creativity in 4H outreach, and coordination with other rural and academic activities.

Preference will be given to applicants who have achieved in county, provincial, and national 4H competitions. The scholarship is for citizens and permanent residents of Canada. It is awarded every year and the application deadline is April 15.

The Angelo and Frank Agro Undergraduate Scholarship is also regarded as one of the best agricultural scholarships in Canada, it is offered to 10 students each year. The award is $10,000 which is paid over 4 years of study but the recipient would have to maintain the reward by maintaining full-time studies and at least 70% program average each year.

Scholarship Link

5.     RSM US Foundation Scholarship

RSM US Foundation supports four Canadian students with $7,500 each and an invitation to an RSM information session. This scholarship is made available every year only to legal residents of Canada (excluding Quebec) who are, at least, 18 years old, enrolled in a full-time program at an accredited university or college in Canada, have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and are two or three years from final graduation in a bachelor’s degree in business or technology.

The scholarship application is open from the 1st of December to the 28th of February every year, selections are made in April, and the scholarship is paid to the recipients’ universities in June. To apply, you will need to submit your unofficial transcript, write a short statement of 200 characters or less describing what makes you unique, and create a 30-second video that demonstrates what The Power of Being Understood means to you.

Send an email to RSMscholarships@rsmus.com to make further inquiries. You can also visit the site via the link below to find out other exciting opportunities that RSM has to offer

Scholarship Link

6.     Saint Mary’s University Scholarships & Awards

Each year, Saint Mary’s University provides scholarships, bursaries, and awards worth over $15.7 million to reward undergraduate students with outstanding academic performance. The scholarships are disbursed via Entrance scholarships and Admission Awards. The scholarships and awards are for domestic and international students.

The Entrance Scholarships are awarded to students accepted into an undergraduate program at SMU with an admission average of 85% or higher. They will be automatically considered for the scholarships.

The Admissions Awards has various scholarships, bursaries, and awards for new students that are established with the support of alumni, staff, community members, and businesses. Also, you must have been accepted into SMU to be considered.

Admissions Awards are set up to meet a variety of student needs, there are different eligibility criteria, such as community involvement, extracurricular activities, academic achievement, or financial need. Students can fill out one application and provide supporting documentation as requested to be considered for one of the awards.

Follow the link below to get all the information on scholarships under Admissions Awards including their application deadline.

Scholarship Link

7.     The University of Waterloo Undergraduate Entrance Awards

The University of Waterloo offers numerous scholarships and awards each year to students with excellent academic records. There are also bursaries awarded to students who demonstrate financial need. The eligibility for the University of Waterloo Undergraduate Entrance Awards is that you are accepted into the university to pursue an undergraduate program.

There is no separate application for entrance awards, all incoming first-year students are automatically considered whether they are international or domestic students. However, the bursary requires its application and it is only for Ontario students.

Scholarship Link

8.     Alice Ann and Evelyn Thelma Merrifield Bursary

In Canada, scholarships are awarded to students based on merit while bursaries are awarded based on financial need. So, know and understand their differences wherever they are used.

Now, the Alice Ann and Evelyn Thelma Merrifield Bursary is offered annually to undergraduate students with financial need enrolled in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering program at Carleton University. The bursary is made available to citizens and permanent residents of Canada including landed immigrants and protected persons.

If you want to pursue aeronautical studies in Canada but cannot afford the cost, the Alice Ann and Evelyn Thelma Merrifield Bursary is a scholarship-specific award you should apply for.

Scholarship Link

9.     International Scholarships and Awards – York University

York University offers four (4) different high-value scholarships annually under the International Scholarships and Awards category. The scholarships are awarded to applicants with an exceptional academic record, and who demonstrate leadership through community service or excellence in the arts or sport.

You must submit an application to be considered for any of the awards. You can apply for the scholarship before applying for admission to York University.  

Below is a brief breakdown of each of the scholarships:

·       International Entrance Scholarship of Distinction

Three (3) of these scholarships are awarded per year, valued at $35,000/year. It is renewable for an additional three years of full-time undergraduate study if the student maintains high academic standing each year, bringing it to a total of $140,000 over four years.

·       Global Leader of Tomorrow Award for International Students

Two (2) of these scholarships are awarded per year, valued at $20,000/year. It is renewable for an additional three years of full-time undergraduate study if the student maintains high academic standing each year, bringing it to a total of $80,000 over four years.

·       International Circle of Scholar’s Scholarship

One (1) of these scholarships is awarded per year, valued at $15,000. It is for $15,000 towards a student’s first year of study.

·       York University Academic Excellence Scholarships for International Students

Five (5) to 10 of these scholarships are awarded per year, valued at $5,000 to $10,000. It is for $5,000 to $10,000 towards a student’s first year of study.

Scholarship Link

10.  Schulich Leader Scholarships

The Schulich Leader Scholarships were established in 2012 by the Schulich Foundation to support undergraduates pursuing careers in STEM. The foundation partners with 20 universities in Canada and to be eligible for the Schulich Leader award, students must be attending one of the 20 partner universities.

A selected student is referred to as a Schulich Leader and each will receive $120,000 or $100,000 to finance their undergraduate program in STEM, 100 students are selected. In addition to the financial reward, a Schulich Leader will join an elite network and benefit from student enrichment opportunities throughout the year. to be considered, your high school must nominate you.

Students must be nominated based on academic excellence, leadership, creativity and charisma, and financial need.

Scholarship Link

Key Take Aways

This wraps up the leading undergraduate scholarships in Canada, and it has been an exhaustive one to give you all the details you need to find a suitable scholarship to study in Canada without financial challenges.

Most, if not all, of the universities in Canada, offer entrance scholarships and awards to new incoming students, and international students are considered for these awards as well. You do not need to apply for entrance awards, all incoming students starting an undergraduate program are automatically considered for entrance scholarships based on their application for admission.

I have already listed some of the universities in Canada that offer entrance scholarships but others are the University of Canada West and the University of Saskatchewan. Also, whichever school you are planning to attend, contact them whether via telephone call, email, or visit the admissions office in person to enquire about their scholarship packages and you will be provided with the appropriate info.


What CGPA is required for undergraduate scholarships in Canada?

The minimum CGPA required to win an undergraduate scholarship in Canada is a GPA of 3.0 on a scale of 4.0

How many undergraduate scholarships in Canada can I apply for?

There is no limit to the number of undergraduate scholarships in Canada you can apply for, in fact, one of the tips to win scholarships is to apply for as many as possible to increase your chances of winning, at least, one. However, there are scholarships that once you have received, you will not be permitted to hold any other scholarship.

Are there undergraduate scholarships in Canada for international students?

Yes, there are so many undergraduate scholarships in Canada for international students offered by universities, the Canadian Government, and other organizations.

Do I need to pay money to apply for undergraduate scholarships in Canada?

Most undergraduate scholarships in Canada are free to apply.