Discover University of Alberta Award

Students and laptop

The Discover University of Alberta Award assists domestic students who are entering the U of A without having completed any post-secondary coursework and who have demonstrated financial challenges and barriers to attending university. Through the program, students will be considered for up to $8,000 per year in award funding. Up to 30 new students per year will qualify for the award.

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria includes the following:

  • Admissibility to an undergraduate direct-entry program.
  • Canadian citizenship, Permanent Resident, or protected person in Canada.
  • Entrance to the U of A without having completed any post-secondary coursework. 
  • Demonstration of financial challenges and barriers to attending university.

What do you need for the Discover University of Alberta application? 

As part of the award application, students will be asked to answer both short and long answer questions and provide a support reference.  

  • Description of life circumstance: These short answer questions provide us with a brief overview of your current life circumstances.
  • Education goals and challenges: These long answer questions highlight your education goals and provide more detail about the relevant financial and life circumstance challenges you may be facing. 
  • Support reference: The support reference provides us with an additional perspective on who you are as an individual from someone who is supportive of you.

Tips for Applying

Tips for getting started and completing the application
  • Apply early! This application requires thoughtful reflection and should not be rushed. We encourage you to work on your application over a few days/weeks.
  • Ensure you carefully read all sections of the application and complete them to the best of your ability.
  • Work on your application in a document outside of the scholarship application form to take advantage of spelling and grammar correction software and avoid technical problems in the application. 
  • Save your application often! Frequently saving will help ensure you maintain your application information and progress.
  • If you encounter technical issues or have questions about the application, email
Tips for long answer responses
  • We want to know more about who you are and where you want to go.
  • Be clear and concise in your written responses and provide specific examples where you can.
  • Show your passion and put things in your own words.
Tips for selecting a support reference
  • Choose a reference who has firsthand knowledge of your educational goals and life circumstances.
  • Once your reference’s email address is submitted, they will receive an email with instructions on how to submit the reference form.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that your reference receives their email instructions and is able to access the secure link provided. Please give your reference at least one to two weeks to write and submit their form. Contact your reference personally and stay in touch with them to ensure they have received the email instructions and can submit the letter on time. Reference forms can only be submitted through the secure link and must be received by the competition deadline. A missing reference form will render your application incomplete and will not be considered.
  • Review your dashboard in the Scholarship Application Portal to ensure your application is complete. You and your reference will also receive a confirmation email when the reference form is submitted.
Tips for the support reference to complete the reference form
  • Your reference letter is a required component of the student’s application. Without it, the student’s application will be considered incomplete, and they will not be considered for the Discover University of Alberta Entrance Award.
  • Reference forms must be submitted through our secure online form; your unique link will be sent to you via email. Reference letters submitted in any other format will not be accepted.
  • If you are unable to complete the reference form by the deadline indicated below, please advise the applicant so that they may choose a new reference.
  • Focus on the applicant’s educational goals and character strengths. Tell us about their academic potential.
  • Using your knowledge of the applicant, tell us what makes the applicant unique. 
  • Tell us how you think receiving this award will help the applicant and what the financial support will mean to them.

How to Apply

  1. Apply for admission to your desired program to receive a CCID and password to apply for scholarships.  Please note that it can take 2-3 business days for a CCID to be generated.
  2. Apply online using the Student Awards application form: Apply for Awards.
  3. You can also access the award application form via Bear Tracks.
If you have a permanent disability and need accessibility support to complete your application, learn more and apply early for applicant accommodations, or contact for assistance.

Application Deadline

Applications open November 1 and close February 15 with offers being made beginning in mid-April.