Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

The Government of Canada launched the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships (Vanier CGS) program in 2008 to strengthen Canada's ability to attract and retain world-class doctoral students and establish Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and higher learning. Vanier Scholars demonstrate leadership skills and a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and/or engineering and health.

The Vanier Scholarships were named in honour of former Governor General Georges Vanier - statesman and hero. The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships (Vanier CGS) program is administered by the Vanier-Banting Secretariat on behalf of Canada's three granting agencies - Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). The Secretariat is housed within CIHR.

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Awarded at $50,000 a year for three years, the Vanier is one of Canada's most prestigious graduate awards.

Note: Eligibility is subject to change. Review the Vanier website for the most up to date information. This website will be updated as more information is available.

Canadian citizens, permanent residents of Canada and international students are eligible to apply. All applicants must:

• be enrolled full-time in a doctoral program no later than January 2025.
• be pursuing their first doctoral degree (including joint undergraduate/graduate research programs, such as MD/PhD, DVM/PhD, JD/PhD - if it has a demonstrated and significant research component). Note that only the PhD portion of a combined degree is eligible for funding.
• have completed no more than 20 months of full-time study in their doctoral program as of May 1, 2024;
• have completed no more than 32 months of full-time study in their doctoral program, by May 1, 2024 if enrolled in a joint graduate research program, e.g., MD/PhD, MA/PhD, DVM/PhD. Applicants that fall into this category have access to the 32-month window whether or not they were previously enrolled in a Master's program; or
• have completed no more than 32 months of full-time study in their doctoral program by May 1, 2024 if accelerated directly from a Bachelor's to a PhD (no time spent in a Master's program); or
• have completed no more than 32 months of full-time study in their doctoral program by May 1, 2024 if accelerated from a Master's degree into a Doctoral program without obtaining the Master's degree.
• have achieved first-class average (GPA of at least 3.5 on the U of A grading scale) in each of the last two years of full-time study (or equivalent)
• not hold, or have held, a doctoral-level scholarship or fellowship from CIHR, NSERC, or SSHRC to undertake or complete a doctoral program.

Note: Indigenous applicants are highly encourage to apply. Institutions may nominate applicants who self-identify as Indigenous (First nation, Inuit and/or Métis) without those nominations being counted towards their quota. Applicants who wish to self-identify themselves as an Indigenous (First Nation, Inuit, and/or Métis) have been instructed to complete the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship (Vanier CGS): Voluntary Self-Identification Form and upload it within their application.

Please visit the Vanier website for complete eligibility details.

Application Procedures

New for the 2024-25 competition: There will no longer be a Preliminary Assessment.

Applicants are to follow the application instructions available on the Vanier website and apply directly through ResearchNet.

Note: ResearchNet will open in late June 2023, however applicants are encouraged due to tight timelines to start their application now. There are relevant documents that can be obtained and/or written without access to ResearchNet, including the CCV, lay abstract, research proposal, project references, and gathering all transcripts. See the application instructions link above for more information.

Nomination Procedures

Departments no longer are require to nominate students, however, departments will have to agree to support via a 2 page nomination letter the student if chosen to be forwarded to the federal competition.

  1. Once the application closes, departments will be notified by FGSR of the students who applied and will be given the opportunity to decide whether or not to support the student.
  2. GSC will adjudicate the applicants and departments will be notified by FGSR of any applicants being forwarded to the national competition.
  3. Departments will be given instructions and deadlines for writing any necessary letters.
Timelines and Deadlines

May 5, 2023 (10-11:30 AM): Academic Success Centre Virtual Workshop on writing the Leadership Statement

August 8, 2023 (11:59 PM MST): Deadline for students to submit full application through ResearchNet

Additional timelines will be provided to students chosen to be nominated and their respective departments after the final adjudication in mid-September 2023.

Additional Information
Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement: Active Vanier holders (if eligible) who wish to undertake research outside of Canada for a defined period of time may consider applying for this supplement.