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Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

Are you an aspiring student looking forward to landing a scholarship and is confused about which of them to apply for? Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships are amongst the most rated scholarship schemes in Canada at the moment. Hence, we are bringing it to your notice first hand on how they operate and what to look out for when applying for it.


The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships was named after a Major general named Georges P. Vanier, the first francophone Governor General of Canada. Subsequently, the Canadian government named this scholarship scheme for the sole purpose of recruiting highly qualified doctoral students. These qualified doctoral students are then given to Canadian institutions and help them achieve their goals.

The Canadian government launched this to attract doctoral students and was launched in 2008. This, however, was done to help strengthen the Canadian economy by bringing the brightest minds into the country. Vanier Scholars demonstrate leadership skills and a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies. So far, they have awarded over 166 on an annual basis since inception(2008). A total of 500 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships are available at every certain time.

The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships program aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students by supporting students who demonstrate both 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.


Selection Criteria

As earlier stated in the background, the selection criteria are quite very competitive. They have however broken their criteria into three (3) stages. These include;

  • Academic Excellence;
  • Research Potential;
  • Leadership (potential and demonstrated ability).

Academic Excellence

The academic excellence of the student is a must-have to get the scholarship. The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships look at the previous performance of the students and decide if they are worth taking. Previous certificates of said performance along with academic reference letters are needed.

Research Excellence

The candidate’s research history and the impact of their activities to date in their area(s) of expertise to date and the communities associated with their research are important indicators of their potential as research leaders of tomorrow. In other words, comprehensive research on your course is needed.

Leadership (potential and demonstrated ability)

When applying, be aware that this is an important criterion that is assessed indirectly. When assessing the leadership criterion, consider how the nominee has gone above and beyond the expected norms to overcome obstacles, foster others, spearhead change, or otherwise demonstrate Leadership.


The duration of the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships lasts for three (3) years at most. These scholarships are however not renewable. Once your three years elapse the scholarship is withdrawn.

Scholarships are distributed equally between the three federal granting agencies:

  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR);
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC);
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

Amount Awarded

Aspirants are probably more interested in the amount the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships are willing to offer. Therefore, the best was saved for last. Upon successful completion of the above, and once awarded, the scholarship gives $50,000 per year.