Canada might be freezing in the winter, but many international students flock to this North American country to enroll because of the quality of life, education, and affordability of studies. The allure of Canadian universities is the reputation of their universities and the opportunity to pursue post-graduate degrees and eventually settle in Canada. Here, we will cover some of the best Canada scholarships available for international students.
Living Costs in Canada for International Students
Students rewarded with Canadian scholarships might not have to worry that much about their tuition fees, but they have to consider the high living standards in Canada. A minimum of CAD $10,000 is required to cover the yearly spending. This includes the accommodation, ranging from $350 to $750 on campus, and over $800 for students renting privately, excluding the utility bills.
Can international students work in Canada?
International students in Canada may work on the campus if they are full-time students, hold a study permit, and work while the study permit is valid. International students who need to work as part of their studies, like medical or healthcare students, are allowed to work in facilities and jobs within the approved work.
Before attempting to work off-campus, an international student must check whether the issued work permit allows it. A full-time student can only work off-campus without a work permit after meeting all of the following requirements:
- The student is a full-time student at a designated institution approved to host international students;
- The student is enrolled in an academic, vocational, or professional training program;
- Course or program is at least six months long and leading to a degree, diploma, or certificate;
- The study program has already started;
- The student has a Social Insurance Number.
A student who is allowed to work off-campus according to Canadian immigration rules can work 20 hours per week during the school semester and full-time during holidays.
Top Universities in Country:
Three Canadian universities made it to the top 50 of the 2024 QS University Ranking; University of Toronto (25), McGill University (31), and University of British Columbia (45). The University of Toronto is Canada’s largest university. It has 700 undergraduate programs and 300 graduate programs across its three campuses. Because of the breadth of its course offerings and its good reputation for academic excellence, the University of Toronto draws many students from all over the world. It currently hosts 27,536 international students from 165 countries.
University of Montréal and University of Alberta round up the top five universities in Canada, ranking 118 and 119. All five universities are public universities with a diverse range of programs and a sizeable international student body.
Best Scholarships in Canada
The Vanier Canada Graduate scholarships are for students who intend to pursue their master’s or first doctoral degree (including joint undergraduate/graduate research program) at a participating Canadian higher education institution.
These Canada scholarships are awarded once the student is fully enrolled at the university, which nominates the student. This fully-funded merit-based scholarship requires the nomination of only one university. The enlisted universities have their VCG quotas and many different requirements that a student needs to meet. Nevertheless, this rewarding scholarship is perfect for research-based master’s and doctoral students, especially those focused on research.
Scholars are nominated by the Canadian institution and, once qualified, will receive $50,000 per year for three years.
The University of Manitoba Graduate Fellowship program is open to masters and Ph.D. students with a minimum admission GPA of 3.0. Students are recommended by their department to the Faculty of Graduate Studies to qualify for this scholarship in Canada.
Master’s degree students receive $14,000 per year for a period of 12 to 24 months, while Ph.D. students receive $18,000 per year for 12, 24, 36, or 48 months.
The University of Toronto has several admission scholarships. International students are automatically considered for these scholarships as they are merit-based scholarships. In addition to these admission scholarships, the university has 5,900 in-course scholarship programs.
The most prestigious international scholarship in the university is the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship. This prestigious scholarship in Canada is awarded to an international student currently in their final year of secondary school nominated by their school and applying for the first time to an undergraduate program at the University of Toronto. The scholars must have proven exceptional academic achievement and must be recognized as leaders within their schools.
The scholarship provides tuition fees, books, incidental fees, and full residence support for four years to approximately 37 students annually.
The University of Columbia scholarships for international students are either merit-based and need-and-merit-based.
The two merit-based scholarships are the International Major Entrance Scholarships (IMES) and Outstanding International Student (OIS) Award. International students are automatically considered for both awards if they meet the following qualifications:
- First-time undergraduate student. Entering UBC from secondary school;
- An International student on a Canadian study permit;
- Proven track record of outstanding academic achievement and extracurricular and community involvement.
The OIS is a one-time award, while the IMES is awarded in the first year of study and can be renewed for up to three additional years. The maximum scholarship value is $25,000 per year.
The University of British Columbia International Scholars Program has four need-and-merit-based scholarships – Karen McKellin International Leader of Tomorrow, Donald A. Wehrung International Student Award, International Impact Award, and Vantage One Excellence Award. Applicants to these programs are no longer eligible for merit-based scholarships.
These need-and-merit-based scholarships in Canada provide financial assistance proportionate to the financial need as determined by projected tuition fees, living costs, and the personal financial capacity of the applicant.
The University of Alberta has several admission-based scholarship programs. Incoming undergraduate students are automatically evaluated to qualify for:
- International Student Scholarships – students may receive up to $9,000, depending on admission average;
- Gold Standard Scholarship – students in the top 5% in each faculty may receive up to $6,00, depending on admission average; and
- University of Alberta International Country Scholarship – students are selected based on the student’s high school region and may receive up to $5,00, depending on admission average.
In addition to these automatically granted scholarships in Canada, incoming undergraduate students may apply for the following:
- University of Alberta International Entrance Citation – maximum award of $40,000 payable over four years;
- International Entrance Leadership Scholarship – students with an admission average of 80%, may receive up to $8,000;
- University of Alberta Centenary Scholarship – maximum award of $30,000 payable over four years;
- May Quon Undergraduate Scholarship – Chinese and Hong Kong Citizens may receive a maximum award of $100,000 payable over four years; and
- University of Alberta Global Citizen Scholarship – students entering undergraduate degree programs from Aga Khan Academy may receive up to $53,000 per year for a maximum of four years.
The Humber College automatically confers scholarships to first-entry undergraduate students based on their academic achievements. These scholarships in Canada are awarded to students that have high school academic achievement of at least a 75% GPA. Students that have at least an 80% GPA may renew their scholarships in succeeding years.
The Humber College Bachelor’s Degree Scholarship awards their undergrads with a tuition budget that ranges from $1,500 to $4,000.
Carleton University awards scholarships to American and other international students based on their high school GPA. The scholarships are offered for the fall semester but can be renewable to prospective students with an admission average of 80% or higher, provided they keep a GPA higher than 80%.
These scholarships in Canada range from $1,000 to $4,000 a year and are renewable if the student maintains an annual GPA of 10.0 or A- standing. The maximum amount of $4,000 will be given to the students with a 10.0 GPA. Students with average grades from 80% to 84.9% will receive $1,000.