Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

Website: Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships


Canada is building a world-class research capacity by attracting top-tier doctoral students, both nationally and internationally, who will positively contribute to our economic, social and research-based growth for a prosperous future. To promote this world-class excellence, the Government of Canada has launched the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships (Vanier CGS) program. This prestigious program awards 500 international and Canadian doctoral students with three-year scholarships.

The Vanier CGS program reaffirms Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and education. The program supports Canada's science and technology policy direction, which capitalizes on people, strengthens knowledge and encourages entrepreneurial advantages to build a competitive Canada.

The Vanier CGS program aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and engineering, and health; as well as leadership skills. Both Canadian and international students are eligible to be nominated for a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship.

A Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship is valued at $50,000 per year, for up to three years.


To be considered for a Vanier CGS, you must:

  • be nominated by only one Canadian university, which must have received a Vanier CGS allocation;
  • be seeking financial support to pursue your first doctoral degree (or combined MA/PhD or MD/PhD);
  • intend to pursue, in the summer semester or the academic year following the announcement of results, full-time doctoral (or combined MA/PhD or MD/PhD) studies and research at the nominating university;
  • have completed no more than 20 months of doctoral studies as of May 1, 2012 (see Notes below);
  • have achieved a first-class average, as determined by your university, in each of the last two years of full-time study or equivalent; and
  • not have already received a doctoral-level scholarship or fellowship from CIHR, SSHRC or NSERC to undertake or complete a doctoral degree (or combined MA/PhD or MD/PhD).

All prior doctoral-level studies, regardless of discipline, will be considered in the evaluation of eligibility. The granting agencies will count two months of part-time study as one month of full-time study. 

In the case of students who are registered in a combined MA/PhD program or a direct-entry doctoral program, or who are accelerated from a master’s program into a doctoral program without obtaining the master’s degree, the agencies will not include the first 12 months of graduate study in the evaluation of eligibility.

Combined MD/PhD degrees (CIHR only)
All months of doctoral-level study within the combined degree program will be considered in the evaluation of eligibility.

Student Type
  • senior
  • graduate
Citizen Type
  • US Citizen
  • Permanent Resident
  • International or Other Visa Status
  • Undocumented

See for complete application details and selection criteria

  1. Applications are initiated in one of two ways. Either:
    1. the candidate informs the faculty of graduate studies at the selected university of their intent to apply to the Vanier CGS competition; or
    2. the university initiates the nomination process by contacting the candidate.
  2. Applications are prepared and submitted using the ResearchNet application system.
  3. The nominating university sets its internal deadline.
  4. The nominating university performs its internal candidate-selection process.
  5. The nominating university forwards recommended nominations to the appropriate federal granting agencies by November 9, 2011 (8:00 p.m. Eastern Time).
  6. The granting agencies perform their selection process.
  7. The granting agencies present their recommendations to the Selection Board.
  8. The Selection Board endorses the recommended nominees.
  9. The Steering Committee makes the final decisions for funding based on the recommendations for Vanier CGS awards.
  10. Successful candidates are notified of the competition results in April 2012.

Important notes:

  • Students wishing to apply for a Vanier CGS should verify that the university to which they are applying for doctoral studies has a Vanier CGS allocation. They must then inform the university that they wish to be considered for a Vanier CGS.
  • Once they have completed the Vanier CGS electronic application through ResearchNet, students must submit their application online to the Canadian university that will be putting forward their nomination. Applications submitted by candidates directly to one of the granting agencies, instead of through a Canadian university, will not be considered.
  • Only one university can submit a nomination for an individual student to an agency. If more than one university is interested in nominating an individual student for an award, the student must choose the university that will submit their nomination. Multiple nominations will not be accepted.
  • Based on its allocation, the university will forward its nominations (including the electronic application and the university’s nomination letter) to the appropriate granting agency.
  • The university is responsible for notifying candidates if their application is not forwarded to one of the agencies.


Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships are awarded after a competitive evaluation process.

University Review

Students must be nominated by a recognized Canadian university. The scholarship liaison officer at each eligible Canadian university is responsible for co-ordinating the university review of their selected candidates and forwarding nominations for Vanier CGSs to the appropriate federal research granting agencies—the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council—in accordance with their university's allocation.

Selection Committees

Once submitted to the appropriate granting agency, each nomination is evaluated by an agency-specific selection committee. Each selection committee recommends the top 55 or 56 candidates (for a total of 167 candidates between all three granting agencies) to the Selection Board based on the nominee's academic and research potential, as well as their leadership skills.

Contact Information

For more information regarding applying to the Vanier CGS program, please contact:


Tel.: 1-613-941-9080