SCHOLARSHIP GUIDE

The Offical Project Uni..

What is a Scholarship? A non-repayable sum of money awarded to a student to help with post-secondary education.

Types of Scholarships:

  1. ​​High School

    • Internal

      • ​​these are scholarships you usually do not have to apply for and are automatically awarded to students by selection committees

    • External

      • ​​usually affiliated with community organizations or specific donors that require additional applications or specific criteria (ex: Rotary Way scholarship)

  2. University

    • Entrance

      • ​​usually automatically considered for these scholarships based on GPA, financial need, and other components of your university application.

    • Specific

      • most schools will list all of their scholarships which require additional applications on a centralized webpage 

        • Often correspond to community service work and leadership

      • TIP: First year is usually when most scholarships are awarded, so it is the peak opportunity to apply for as many as possible (some may continue for multiple years).

  3. Extra-curricular

    • Organizations/clubs

      • ​​​Both local and national organizations may offer awards in your community. Be sure to ask the clubs/committees/leagues you are involved with.

    • Employment-related

      • ​​​Awards may be available through your or your parents’ workplace. Be sure to ask them and/or your supervisor!

    • TIP: Start this process early! Many of these awards require reference letters, essays, and more to be eligible.

**Meet with a high school counselor to be aware of all scholarship opportunities and identify strategies to lessen the financial burden of applying to and attending post-secondary schools.**

​​​MORE TIPS...

  • Apply broadly - millions of dollars in scholarships go unclaimed every year

  • Start applying and looking as early as possible for potential scholarships

  • Check your high school’s website and universities’ scholarship information page to be aware of application dates and any awards you are eligible to apply for, guidance can be helpful (sometimes)

  • Apply for university entrance scholarships 

  • Put time and effort into applications - even if it seems like hard work it is the most you will make relative to the hours put in out of basically any job you could have 

RESOURCES

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For a 2020 Schulich Leader...

2

Why do you think you won the scholarship? What do you believe set 

you apart from other students who applied?

To be honest, I'm not certain. There are a few factors that I can point out, however, that I believe have had a lot of influence on my application. First, I did a summer of research in physics at Laval University. I think that it really gave a boost to my candidacy, because the

Schulich scholarship favours people who are heavily involved in STEM. Second, I occupied leadership positions throughout my time as an air cadet. This showed to the selection committee that I can take responsibilities and lead projects. I placed a lot of emphasis in my text about what I value and the importance of nurturing a growth mindset in the members of a team, and that conveyed the idea that I was not just a selfish guy only leading for myself and my own advancement.

If you had to describe a Schulich leader in 3 words what would they be?

I can't really, because they are all so different. However, I notice two kinds of profile emerging, with people all along the spectrum. First, there are people who devote their energy to a single skill and push it to the extreme. A few Schulich Leaders are already seasoned programmers in grade 12 and often have taught their skills to other. Some of these have built applications that are used in the world right now. Second, there are people who are more "jack of all trades" (I think I belong to this category). They are not as experts in a given field as the other type, but they have a broad set of skills. In the end, what unites them is that they use their skills to support their values and what they believe is the best thing to do. They are also very respectful of each other's difference and find strength in using everyone's abilities at their best. I feel that a Schulich Leader is not something that one simply is, but rather a title that has to be earned again and again. These people don't sit on their victories; rather, they push ever more to see what's beyond the curtain.

1

If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what would you tell your former self upon preparing for the application for the Schulich scholarship? 

I would give much more thought into my application. I did put a lot of effort, but I did not think so much beforehand about the message I wanted to convey to whoever was going to read my application. Applicants are not selected  only because they have a lot to show, but because they have a story to tell. For a Schulich application, having a "beefy" resume is of importance, but it does not mean anything if you did it only for the credit. Also, I would plan my text before I write it... That might sound obvious, but I found myself writing it over three times before finding a structure that I like.

5

If there was an interview, what were some of the questions asked? How did you prepare for it?

I did not have an interview, and I have not heard of anyone being interviewed for the Schulich Leader Scholarship. I was, however, invited to the final interviews of the Loran Scholarship. They asked very good interview questions, which revolved around getting more precisions about your application and getting to know your personality. I was asked questions such as "who is a model for you," "how do you tackle a conflit," "what is your approach to leadership," "why is this important to you..." Before applying for scholarships and interviews, it's a good idea to go through a little bout of introspection !

4

If you don't mind can you please share your stats & extracurriculars?

Sure! During four years, I have been a member of the Royal Canadian Air cadets, a program in which I eventually reached the role of warrant officer and chief of staff. During that time, I was provincial champion and national finalist of the annual effective speaking competition and earned my glider pilot and my private pilot license. After receiving these qualifications, I have taught theoretical flying to younger cadets. It is through this program that I got acquointed withe the International Duke of Edinburgh Award. I completed my silver and gold levels, and I am now the activities coordinator of the emerging Alumni association, with a seat on the national association council. For the last two summers, I have been working at the Center for Optics, Photonics and Lasers, Laval University's physics lab, on the optical properties of "photoswitch" molecules and the propagation modes in fibers. Now, I am an intern in at an AI company and the main author of a blog for a nonprofit helping students get scholarships. I am also in the process of founding an association to raise awareness on eating disorders in athletes.

JUICY

QUESTIONS

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Is there anything else you’d like to add or mention?

I volunteer for a nonprofit called The Debtless Students, where we help students apply for scholarships and mentor them in the process. Feel free to look at our website at https://thedebtlessstudents.org/

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------SCHULICH INFO------

WHO?

  • High school student entering STEM at one of 20 partner universities, one nominee per high school

  • Final year high school/Cegep

  • Canadian citizen or permanent resident

  • Academic excellence and leadership/creativity

​​

WHAT?

  • Canada’s largest scholarship: $100k for engineering, $80k science/math

  • Join the Schulich Leaders’ Network: networking with leaders in STEM and other Schulich Leaders, conferences across Canada!

DEADLINE:  Feb. 17, 2021

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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LOUIS-PHILLIPE ROBICHAUD

Hi! I'm LP, a 2020 Schulich Leader at McGill University. I study Mathematics and Computer science, in the hope to pursue a career in Artificial Intelligence. I am involved in all sorts of things, ranging from Air cadets to academic mentorship. I love to run, cook (and eat), read and engage in projects that have an impact on people.I'm also a part time writer for blogs and projects. Even if i'm only entering university as of 2020, I feel that the experience is already a very transforming one, because of the valuable relationships that I have formed in this new environment.

  • LinkedIn

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For a 2019 Loran Finalist & Schulich Leader...

2

Why do you think you won the scholarship? What do you believe set you apart from other students who applied?

My essay focused on my startup, my STEM leadership, and my academic achievements. But I don't think it was the content of my essay that helped me stand out, I think it was the narrative I was able to craft. I was able to convey the complete

picture of myself: a motivated and driven leader, with a passion for using STEM for good, and for empowering others to do the same. I shared who I was, the impact STEM has had on my life, and how I've made an impact on others. If I had to guess, I'd say who I am set me apart more than my achievements.

How would you suggest students approach writing scholarship essay questions? What was your method?

I would emphasize crafting a narrative and being clear about impact. The truth is, you can assume everyone applying is on DECA, Student Council, Coding Club, and EcoWarriors. What makes you stand out? Talk about who you are, and what motivates you. What drives you to do the things you've done? Share the impact you've had on people and the community. How have you empowered and shaped those around you? Getting to these higher-level ideas can help make your application stand-out more than a list of extracurriculars. I promise someone else has been involved with more things than you. Think about how you can convey more than *what* you've done, but *why* and *how* you did it. Show your initiative, tenacity, and courage. That's what makes the difference when every other applicant has the same experiences.

1

If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what would you tell your former self upon preparing for the application for the Schulich & Loran  scholarship? 

I'd tell myself "it's worth it!" Scholarship applications can be a lot of work, and you might not hear back for months, and when you do, you'll mostly hear you didn't get it. That can be very unmotivating, and there were definitely times when I didn't feel like working on an application. After a long week, it's hard to sit and write a thousand word 

5

If there was an interview, what were some of the questions asked? How did you prepare for it?

Schulich doesn't have an interview stage. On the other hand, the Loran selection process had several rounds and types of interviews. They tend to ask common questions, like the ones used for job interviews, and usually some more interesting or unique ones too! I prepared by thinking about my experiences and talking through my responses for these common questions. You can't do much to prepare for unique questions, other than to know and remember the experiences you've had. They're really there to see who you truly are, so I wouldn't memorize answers or try to stretch the truth. Just be yourself, fully and truly, and let them decide. Let your personality shine, smile, and be transparent! Even if "yourself" is nervous or not super confident, that's okay, and it's okay to be honest about that. Just make sure you're being yourself, and if you don't end up moving onto the next stage, then the award likely wasn't the best fit for you and you weren't who they're looking for. That's okay! At least you 

4

If you don't mind can you please share your stats & extracurriculars?

Sure! I had a 99% average in High School. In Grade 12, I was the President of Math Club and Maker Club, founder of Coding Club and Economics Club, a part of Student Council and DECA, as well as the school newspaper and Student Senate. I founded my own e-commerce startup, which helped make hobby electronics more affordable and accessible by bridging the gap between North American and overseas markets. I also did well in hackathons and math/coding competitions. I was a United Nations Youth Assembly delegate, a member of the City of Hamilton Youth Steering Committee, and I helped organize a few large scale events, including a youth Financial Literacy conference. It was a busy year!

JUICY

QUESTIONS

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Is there anything else you’d like to add or mention?

The one piece of advice I have is to keep applying! So many talented and deserving students miss out on scholarships because they don't think they'll get it and they don't apply. It's your job to apply, and theirs to

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essay, especially if you don't think you'll get the award. I applied to Loran, Schulich, and many other awards with the complete expectation that I wouldn't get them. When I compared myself to the previous years winners, I never thought I had a chance, and almost every Schulich Leader I've talked to felt the same way. If I let that mindset get to me, then I wouldn't have applied or won any of these awards. Don't second guess yourself and keep your hopes high. All the effort you put into these applications - it's worth it!

reject or accept you, don't reject yourself prematurely. Also, keep applying to awards of all sizes. The truth is, it's a numbers game. You could be the most deserving applicant and get missed because the reader was having a bad morning. Keep applying to awards. Not only does it increase your chances, it'll make you better at writing scholarship essays and doing interviews, so that when a big award comes around, you're already a pro. Just keep at it!

know that their decision was based on who you truly are, and not who you pretended to be.

------LORAN INFO------

WHO?

  • Final year high school student.

  • Minimum cumulative average of 85%.

  • Canadian citizenship/permanent resident status.

  • 16 years of age by September 1st following year.

​​

WHAT?

  • An annual stipend of $10,000

  • A matching tuition waiver from one of 25 partner universities

  • Personal mentorship from a Canadian leader

  • Access to our network and up to $10,000 in funding for summer work experiences in three different sectors

DEADLINE:  Mid October every year

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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JASON AMRI

Jason Amri is 2019 Schulich Leader, Loran finalist, and STEAM Horizons Award winner. He's a 2nd year student pursuing a double degree in Computer Science (at UWaterloo) and Business (at Laurier). He has always been passionate about Tech and Business, and is active in many roles helping to promote these fields. These days, he's busy helping run hackathons, managing sponsorship for a self-driving car design team, competing in case competitions, doing pro-bono consulting, and hosting consulting events at UW. Jason loves his dog, Hamilton (the musical AND the city), and would love to connect with you on LinkedIn or Instagram!

  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
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3

For a TD National Scholarship Winner

If you had to describe a TD Scholar in 3 words what would they be?

Passionate, Driven, and Lucky.

1

If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what would you tell your former self upon preparing for the application for the TD scholarship? 

If I could go back in time, I would tell myself a couple things. Firstly, that I should start applying just a little bit earlier. This would have given me a bit of breathing room, but more importantly would have given my references a bit more time to work with. Given that your references are the ones volunteering to give you a helping hand, it is imperative that you try to get the your own application done, at least a week before the deadline, so they have adequate time to write you a really strong letter of recommendation! Another thing I would tell myself is to relax a little bit. You are who you are and you’ve done what you’ve done, whether or not you get a scholarship as a result of your accomplishments in no way determines your worth or the worth of the work you have done.

5

If there was an interview, what were some of the questions asked? How did you prepare for it?

Although I don’t really remember any specific interview questions, I do remember most of the questions asked being directly related to my application, so I would suggest reading yours over a few times just to make sure you have all your details straight. The interview itself is rather laid back. It is not some sort of quiz where you will be bombarded with highly specific questions. The TD people are all really nice and are genuinely just trying to learn more about you. I prepared for the interview by doing a whole lot of practice. With teachers, with friends, basically anyone who was willing to lend me 15-30 minutes of their time. I gave them all free reign on the type of questions they could ask, and then had them critique my answers. This interview process is something that I did 5-10 times for each scholarship I applied to and was really helpful as it gave me a wide range of possible interview styles and taught me how exactly I could improve my responses and other interview minutiae. There are two important things to note if you do plan on doing some mock interviews. First off, the advice you are given by your various interviewers is just that, advice. You should always take it with a grain of salt and choose to make the final decision based on your own best judgement. Secondly, doing a lot of interviews is a double-edged sword.

If you don't mind can you please share your stats & extracurriculars?

4

  • Created "Heads Up Guys" a mental health initiative. He shared it with youth groups & various schools

  • Catechism Teacher - taught religious faith and moral value to fifteen fourth grade students. He held meeting every Saturday morning for 2 hours. Through this role he prepared lessons, taught them by the curriculum, de-escalated, and resolved high-tension situations. Outside of just the classroom, he also organized parties, get-togethers, and activities with other classes for his students.

  • Peer tutor since the ninth grade 

  • SHAD Fellow and Ambassador

JUICY

QUESTIONS

2

Why do you think you won the scholarship? What do you believe set you apart from other students who applied?

It is a little difficult to pinpoint why exactly I won the TD scholarship as opposed to many other equally qualified candidates. However, I think it came down to 4 important factors. Firstly, during my application, I tried to imbue my writing with my personality. I avoided being to rigid and

formal, and used humour as well as informal terms like “bros” in order to hopefully makethe reviewer’s day a bit better. Secondly, throughout the application process, interview process and even after, I actively sought out help; help from my teachers to do mock interviews, help from past employers to right good letters of recommendation, help from my mom to make some good food the day before the interview etc. etc.

Another thing that I think set me aside from others was my mentality going into the scholarship. When I went into the room, I tried my best just to have fun, be myself, and convey what I was passionate about, I cracked jokes with the interviewers and thought deeply about the questions they asked me rather than just giving rehearsed answers. The last, and most important thing that set me aside was luck. There were a lot of factors outside of my control that led me to getting the scholarship, however put simply, I first tried my very best, and then hoped for the very best.

On one side it can help you be more prepared for a wide range of questions, but on the other side, it can leave your answers sounding pre-rehearsed and manufactured.Consequently, when doing mock interviews your goal should not be to memorise exact responses, but rather to gain a skill set that would allow you to answer just about any interview question with (relative) confidence and ease.

Is there anything else you’d like to add or mention?

I would like to reiterate my three most important tips. Firstly, give your references adequate time to prepare you a really bomb reference letter. Secondly, do mock interviews, but be sure to not memorise answers. Thirdly, take a deep breath, you are who you are, and scholarship or not, the work you have done stands as a testament to your awesomeness! One very last thing, if you can, reach out to a past scholar (TD or otherwise), they are all really cool people and are almost always willing to lend a helping hand if you have any questions regarding the scholarship or life in general. Best of luck!

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------TD INFO------

WHO?

  • Students who have demonstrated community leadership

  • Are in final year of high school or CEGEP (in Quebec)

  • Have a minimum overall grade average of 75% in their most recently completed school year

​​

WHAT?

  • Up to $70,000 for college or university (up to $10,000 for tuition per year)

  • $7,500 a year for living expenses for 4 years.

DEADLINE: Applications for the 2021/2022 year are now closed. Applications for students starting college or university in September 2023 will open in September 2022.

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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CHINEMEREM CHIGBO

Heyo! My name is Chinemerem and I'm a Computer Engineering student at the University of Waterloo. I love learning new things and meeting new people. Feel free to reach out to me at using any of the given links if you would like to talk! 

  • Youtube
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

For a TD National Scholarship Winner

1

If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what would you tell your former self upon preparing for the application for the TD scholarship? 

My first advice is to prioritize scholarship applications strategically. I found writing scholarship applications to be incredibly draining, but it was great practice for university applications later in the year. Don’t discount yourself for the big scholarships (which have earlier deadlines), as even if you don’t win, the process teaches you a lot about yourself and you will be grateful that you were organized before you had to really focus on earning high marks. If there are smaller local scholarships or scholarships specific to Universities (Chancellor’s scholarships, etc.) check those out too! On top of that, I would tell myself not to be discouraged by rejection. I personally put an incredible amount of effort into my LORAN application and didn’t get past the first round. The scholarship process is very subjective, so don’t let it dictate your self-worth and keep applying to various scholarships to maximize your odds!

JUICY

QUESTIONS

2

Why do you think you won the scholarship? What do you believe set you apart from other students who applied?

I think I won the scholarship due to how genuinely excited I was about the work I was doing. In my case, I had been a part of a youth philanthropy organization called SVP Teens since I was in middle school. The group was beginning to fizzle out, but I had a vision for what the program could become, so I got to work! The lesson that can be learned from this is that you don’t have to found a start-up or start your own charity for the sake of winning a scholarship; instead, look at the things you are already involved in to see where you can make a difference. Secondly, scholarship committees get tons of applications from students who have done it all: student council presidents, club executives, athletes, mathletes, you name it. The only way to stand out is to effectively communicate why what you do is important to you, how it has shaped you as a person, and how it has impacted your community (use numbers!). Prioritize the quality of your activities over the quantity, and don’t waste your (incredibly limited!) wordcount listing every activity you’ve ever participated in without tying meaning to them. Some really great advice that was given to me was “being Student Council President is awesome, but there are 2 of them at every high school across the entire country”. The takeaway from this is not that you shouldn’t be Student Council President, but that the work you do doesn’t have to come with a flashy title to be meaningful and make you stand out. If you are someone with an idea to do something you’re genuinely passionate about, stop waiting for permission to do it! Beyond the world of scholarships, there is nothing more rewarding than seeing your work have a tangible impact on the issues you care most about. If you can find something that gets you truly excited, your genuine passion for the work you’re doing will shine through in your writing and in an interview.

3

If there was an interview, what were some of the questions asked? How did you prepare for it?

The TD Interview was very straightforward and felt like a casual conversation (there are no trick questions you need to prepare for - just be confident in who you are and be yourself!). I did my interview online, so if you end up doing the same, make sure you have a quiet environment, a good wifi connection, and won’t be interrupted while interviewing. For everything in your written application, I recommend having stories about what you’ve learned from the experience and how you’ve made an impact, even if all the interviewers ask is “Tell me about yourself”. Finally, I have personally always been somewhat uncomfortable talking about my accomplishments, so the concept of a scholarship interview made me nervous. Finding the balance between being humble and communicating why what you’ve done is scholarship-worthy is really tough. After writing out my answers to questions I thought they might ask, I walked around my neighbourhood with my mom and she asked me questions until I became comfortable answering without being nervous. I definitely recommend practicing your answers to questions to get your jitters out! 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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JOCELYNE MURPHY

Hey I'm Jocelyne! I'm a first year Systems Design Engineering Student at the University of Waterloo. Feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn if you want to chat about University (especially the online first-year experience), social good and charity work, or just about life! 

  • LinkedIn

For a 2020 Chancellor's Scholarship Winner ...

1

What advice do you have for high school students applying to your program, or for the scholarship you received?

My biggest piece of advice for high school students would be to find things that you are passionate about pursuing. I know that everyone wants to have a long list of extracurriculars and awards, but once you find your passions these lists will create themselves. I would also advise high school students not to underestimate the importance of planning ahead, whether it be in general applications, applications for scholarships, or in course work. Creating a schedule or mini-deadlines for yourself helped me reduce my stress, which in turn helped me produce higher quality work, both in my applications and in school work. Having time to revisit and revise work makes a big difference when it comes to the quality of the final product, so planning ahead such that you have time to undergo the revision process is a step which I would suggest not overlooking.

JUICY

QUESTIONS

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2

Why do you think that you won the Queen's Chancellor's Scholarship? What do you believe sets you apart from other students that applied?

I feel so grateful to have received the Queen’s Chancellor’s Scholarship, and I think that part of the reason I was so lucky to receive this award was a combination of the breadth of different activities that I participated in throughout high school, and my passion for those activities. When you truly care about what you are doing, it doesn’t feel like a chore to seek out the opportunities for volunteering and leadership which help to boost the quality of your resume. For a scholarship as competitive as the Chancellor’s, it is important to show that you are not merely a passive participant in a club or an activity. Everyone applying for the scholarship is an accomplished, intelligent, and well-rounded student; therefore, it is not enough to only have a list of awards that you’ve earned, or clubs that you’ve joined. Rather, focusing your application on your unique characteristics and qualities, or something unique that you have created or contributed, is a way to make your application stand out, by demonstrating your innovation and creativity.

------CHANCELLOR'S INFO------

WHO?

  • High school student entering grade 12, applying to Queen's university, and you must be nominated by your high school (each school can have a max of 1-3 nominees based on how many graduating students there are)

  • Available to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.  You may attend high school in Canada or internationally.

  • Students who demonstrate superior academic ability, creative and original thinking, involvement in school or community activities, and proven leadership can apply for a Queen’s major admission award. 

  • Financial need is also a consideration for some of our major admission awards.

  • 90%+ Average

​​

WHAT?

  • Queen's largest scholarship: $36 000 dollars awarded to 50 lucky students (each students receives $9000 per year)

DEADLINE:  December 1st, 2021

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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MADELINE RITTER

Hi! My name is Madeline Ritter and I am a freshman at Queen’s University, although I am studying remotely from my home in Winnipeg for my first year. I am in the Faculty of Arts & Science and so far I’ve taken courses on politics, English literature, ancient greek civilizations, the history of globalization, and linguistics, and will be pursuing some philosophy courses in the winter term. Some of my favourite extracurriculars at Queen’s have been Model Parliament, being a freshman representative for the TEDxQueen’sU organization, and a freshman representative for the Queen’s chapter of the Operation Smile charity. Aside from university-related activities, I enjoy reading, working out, and spending time with friends and family.