Ontario scholarships can open the door to a wealth of opportunities at universities in Ontario, which count as some of the most prestigious universities in Canada. From the University of Toronto, and Carleton University to Western University and York University, you can use an Ontario scholarship to support your studies at any of these schools, as well as colleges and vocational or technical schools. This article features some of the best Ontario scholarships that cater to domestic students, non-Ontario Canadians, residents of Quebec or other provinces, and international students with student visas. 


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Ontario Scholarships: Domestic or Canadian Students Ontario Scholarships: International Students How to Get Ontario Scholarships FAQs

Ontario Scholarships: Domestic or Canadian Students

1. Loran Scholars Foundation

Award Amount: Up to $100,000 over four years

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Leadership, character, academic excellence

Applicant Criteria: Canadian citizens or permanent residents, demonstrated leadership potential.

The prestigious Loran Award recognizes Canadian students who exemplify outstanding leadership, character, and academic achievements. If you're a Canadian citizen or permanent resident with demonstrated leadership potential, this Ontario scholarship could help fund all four years of your undergraduate education in Canada. The prize is open to all Canadian students, as long as they plan to attend 25 select Canadian universities, such as McMaster University, Queen’s University or York University to name a few. You have to have GPA of at least 85% to be eligible, and you will also have to interview, if you are short-listed. To prepare for your interview, make sure to check out common college admission interview questions and scholarship interview questions.

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2. The Fred VanVleet Scholarship

Award Amount: $57,800 distributed over four years

Type: Needs-, merit-based

Application Requirements: Financial need, academic standing

Applicant Criteria: Canadian citizens or permanent residents, demonstrate financial need, Black or Indigenous students at Rotman School of Commerce

This Ontario scholarship is aimed solely at Black and Indigenous students who want to enter the Rotman School of Commerce, as undergraduates, specifically to the Management program. The Fred VanVleet scholarship is a unique Canadian scholarship as it is sponsored by a single individual, former Toronto Raptors point guard, Fred VanVleet. It provides a sum total of nearly $60,000 over your four years to pay tuition, and cover other related costs such as textbooks and housing. You will also receive mentoring from the basketball star, but you must maintain good academic standing throughout your program.

3. Hamilton Community Foundation Scholarships

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic achievements, community involvement

Applicant Criteria: Students residing in Hamilton, Ontario.

The Hamilton Community Foundation Scholarships are dedicated to students residing in Hamilton, Ontario, who showcase exceptional academic achievements and community involvement. If you're a proactive member of the Hamilton community, this scholarship could recognize and support your efforts. The only requirements include having graduated from a high school in Hamilton and submitting an application to the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). The HCFS also sponsors several free scholarships in Canada through post-secondary institutions in Hamilton, such as McMaster and Mohawk College. 

4. Olive Tree Foundation Scholarships

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, community engagement

Applicant Criteria: Canadian citizens or permanent residents, active in the Muslim community.

The Olive Tree Foundation Scholarships support Canadian-Muslim and non-Muslim students who actively engage in the Muslim community, valuing both academic excellence and community service. But it also offers easy scholarships in Canada for dedicated members of the Muslim community who have excelled academically, or have exhibited extraordinary leaderships skills. The OTF offers five distinct Canadian scholarships. They are all for graduating high-school students who are entering their first-year of undergraduate study and fit into various categories from scholarships for students with a disability, or for young women who have both excelled academically and consistently engaged with the community.

5. The Kiwanis Club of Ottawa Scholarship

Award Amount: $1,000

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic achievements, community involvement

Applicant Criteria: Ottawa residents, active in community service.

The Kiwanis Club of Ottawa sponsors several scholarships for Ottawa residents and Kiwanis club members who exhibit exceptional academic achievements and active community involvement. The scholarships range from awards to support local high school students in their first-year of undergraduate study and are based on merit (Kiwanis Club of Manotick Scholarship). But the Kiwanis Club has also started a medical school scholarship for students who are entering pre-med studies with a plan to attend either medical or nursing school. The latter is not a no-essay scholarship in Canada, as you must provide an essay explaining your reasons for why you want to be a doctor or why you want to be a nurse.

6. Jean Chrétien Scholarships at the University of Ottawa

Award Amount: Up to $5,000

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, studying Political Science or Public Administration at the University of Ottawa program

Applicant Criteria: Domestic students enrolled in eligible Ontario universities.

Jean Chretien Scholarships are Ontario scholarships that reward excellence among students who are entering either the Political Science or Public Administration programs at the University of Ottawa. Academic excellence is the main rewarding criteria. You have to have a grade average at or over 92% to qualify for the award. You must also demonstrate leadership skills or community engagement through a college recommendation letter that is part of your application.

7. Terry Fox Humanitarian Award

Award Amount: Up to $28,000 over four years

Type: Community-based

Application Requirements: Humanitarian qualities, leadership, academic excellence

Applicant Criteria: Canadian citizens or permanent residents, demonstrated community dedication.

This award celebrates students embodying Terry Fox's spirit through leadership and community service, but it is not an exclusively Ontario scholarship so you can apply from your home province. The Terry Fox award consists of a full scholarship over four years. You must be a high school graduate or be enrolled in your first year of a CEGEP program at any of the universities in Quebec to be eligible. Volunteering and community engagement are also key requirements, so you must have a long list of student engagement activities for college that showcase your humanitarian traits and academic achievements for consideration. This will be easier if you have already completed your OUAC activities and employment entries.

8. Black Canadian Scholarship Fund

Award Amount: $6,000

Type: Needs-based, merit-based

Application Requirements: Completed application, demonstrate financial need, provide essays and transcripts

Applicant Criteria: Ottawa residents, Canadian citizens, permanent residents, Black students

The Black Canadian Scholarship is sponsored by the Ottawa Community Foundation and hopes to support Black students from high schools in the Ottawa region with a one-time financial assistance award. You must complete an online application and submit at least one college essay describing why you need the award and how you will live up to the expectations of the scholarship, such as community service, academic excellence and leaderships roles. Academic performance is also important and you must have a grade average between 75 and 95% to be considered.

9. Chernoff Family Award

Award Amount: $48,000-$60,000

Type: Needs-based

Application Requirements: Completed application, demonstrate financial need

Applicant Criteria: Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or protected persons, from rural or remote parts of Canada

The Chernoff Family Award aims to provide a lifeline to students from remote parts of Canada to study at Queen’s University in Ontario. While this Ontario scholarship shows preference for students from remote areas, students from all parts of Canada are eligible. But the other criteria include exceling academically (GPA of 3.5 or higher), demonstrating financial need, and having original, creative ideas. You must also be entering a program of study at Queen’s University full-time.

10. Florence Evelyn and William Leonard Prideaux Award

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Needs-based, community-based

Application Requirements: Aboriginal Canadian student, member of Scouts Canada, demonstrate financial need, entering either the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering, or the Faculty of Arts and Science

Applicant Criteria: Ontario residents, Canadian citizens, Indigenous students

This Ontario scholarship from the University of Toronto is very specific in its goals and criteria, as it is open only to Indigenous (Inuit) students from the Northwest Territories or from the Moosonee region in Northern Ontario who are entering either the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering or the Faculty of Arts and Science in the Architecture program. The other application requirement is that you are a long-standing member of Scouts Canada.

Are you a mature applicant? Check this out:

Ontario Scholarships: International Students

1. Lester B. Pearson International Scholarships

Award Amount: Full tuition, books, incidental fees, and full residence support

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, leadership skills, community involvement

Applicant Criteria: International students with exceptional academic records, demonstrated leadership, and a commitment to community service.

The Lester B. Pearson International Scholarships are one of the most popular scholarships in Canada for international students. This Ontario scholarship covers full tuition, books, living expenses and offers comprehensive residence support for all international students who are entering an undergraduate program at the University of Toronto. It seeks students with exceptional academic achievements, profound leadership skills, and a proven dedication to community service. You must be nominated by your home high school, but you can start the process by asking teachers, guidance counselors or other school administrators to nominate you.

2. University of Toronto International Scholar Award

Award Amount: Full tuition support, living stipend, and academic support

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Exceptional academic achievements, admission to a U of T graduate program

Applicant Criteria: International students with study permits enrolled in the University of Toronto.

This prestigious award is not necessarily an MBA scholarship, even though you must be entering the Rotman School of Commerce as an undergraduate to qualify. Aside from being enrolled full-time at the Rotman School of Commerce, you must also be an international student and maintain good academic standing throughout your program to have this Ontario scholarship renewed every four years.

3. Tentanda Via Award - International

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, leadership potential, extracurricular achievements

Applicant Criteria: International students demonstrating outstanding academic records, remarkable leadership qualities, and active participation in extracurricular activities.

The Tentanda Via Award - International at York University is a beacon for international students who exhibit outstanding academic prowess, exceptional leadership potential, and a strong commitment to extracurricular activities. This Ontario scholarship offers international students two pathways to receive financial assistance from the university. You must submit a college letter of intent explaining either how you’ve overcome obstacles in your life; or what you have done to achieve Sustainability Development Goals set by the United Nations. You must also submit at least one supporting document (reference letter or newspaper article detailing your exploits).

4. University of Ottawa International English Entrance Scholarship

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Proficiency in English, outstanding academic achievements

Applicant Criteria: International students with excellent academic records and a demonstrated command of the English language.

The International English Entrance Scholarship at the University of Ottawa is a prestigious Ontario scholarship that aims to bring exceptional international students proficient in English to the university. The award amounts are based on your program of study and country of origin. This merit-based scholarship awards different amounts to students from select countries in Africa and Southeast Asia over the course of their studies, as long as they maintain good academic standing. You must have a grade average above 90% to be considered and not be taking any classes in French, as the scholarship is only offered to students taking instruction in English.

5. Dr. Thomas H. Mitchell Scholarship

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Exceptional academic achievements, US citizen, admission to a Carleton University Faculty of Public Affairs

Applicant Criteria: US students with study permits enrolled in Carleton University.

Carleton University sponsors this Ontario scholarship for American students who are studying at the Faculty of Public Affairs. If you excel academically and meet the other requirements, such as being a full-time student and having a specific grade average you will be automatically considered for this award, as there is no separate application.

6. Richard Van Loon Scholarship

Award Amount: $5,000

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Outstanding academic achievements, exceptional leadership skills, community involvement

Applicant Criteria: International, African students with a minimum admission average of 80%.

The Richard Van Loon Scholarship, named after a former Carleton University president, is valued at $5,000, and is an in-class scholarship aimed at international students of African origin. You must already be enrolled full-time in any undergraduate program at the university and be successfully progressing to your next year. You must demonstrate good academic standing and also submit an application to be considered. 

7. University of Windsor International Student Renewable Scholarship of Excellence

Award Amount: $5,000 over 4 years

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, admission to a University of Windsor program

Applicant Criteria: International students with study permits enrolled in the University of Windsor.

The University of Windsor recognizes outstanding international students with significant financial aid throughout their four-years of an undergraduate program. You must have at least an 80% grade average when you apply, and, if you are awarded this Ontario scholarship, you must maintain good academic standing (minimum 75% grade average) to have this scholarship renewed.

8. Toronto Metropolitan University International Secondary School Merit Scholarship

Award Amount: $5,000

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Exceptional academic achievements, admission to a TMU program

Applicant Criteria: International students with study permits enrolled in Ryerson University, first-year students

The Toronto Metropolitan University celebrates exceptional international secondary school students with this merit-based, Ontario scholarship. You must have completed your secondary school program in your home country with at least an 80% grade average. You must also submit a personal statement outlining why you should be granted this scholarship, your extracurriculars for college and what obstacles you have overcome during your studies.

9. Trent University International Global Citizen Scholarships

Award Amount: $2,000 to $22,000

Type: Merit-based, need-based

Application Requirements: Academic excellence, involvement in global citizenship initiatives

Applicant Criteria: International students with study permits enrolled in Trent University.

Trent University values international students committed to global citizenship, and has created this Ontario scholarship to support their endeavors with significant financial aid. This is one the most prestigious and financially rewarding Ontario scholarships for international students and you must both excel academically and showcase your participation or leadership in global initiatives for consideration. You must submit various essays outlining your career aspirations and your past community service or volunteer engagements. You must also provide at least two letters of recommendation and a financial profile, which an academic advisor in Ontario can help you procure.

10. Farouk and Dawn Ahamed International Student Scholarships

Award Amount: Varies

Type: Merit-based

Application Requirements: Exceptional academic achievements, admission to a Wilfrid Laurier University program

Applicant Criteria: International students demonstrating outstanding academic records, leadership potential, and a passion for community engagement.

Established in honor of Farouk and Dawn Ahamed's commitment to education and global understanding, these Ontario scholarships are open to international students who are entering Wilfrid Laurier University.

How to Get Ontario Scholarships

1. Research the Scholarship's Requirements

You need to understand all the particular requirements of Ontario scholarship so you apply only to the ones for which you are eligible. The same applies whether you are pursuing Alberta scholarships or any other type of scholarship. Understand the scholarship's specific criteria, objectives, and mission and only apply to those Ontario scholarships that are for your particular student category, background and community. When you do identify an Ontario scholarship that does apply to you, take the time to explore their website, read past recipient profiles, so you can understand what they are looking for in a particular candidate. This in-depth understanding will enable you to tailor your application effectively, making it resonate with the scholarship committee.

2. Get Good Grades

Academic excellence is often the main requirement for many Ontario scholarships, but it is also important for how to get into university in Ontario. If you think you will need financial aid or assistance to attend any university or college in Ontario you should consistently aim for high grades, and challenge yourself with challenging coursework to make the best impression on scholarship committees. Since there are many entrance scholarships in Ontario, maintaining a strong GPA throughout your academic journey will give you automatic consideration for many lucrative awards and save you from having to put in the time and effort to create a separate application. But also remember to strive for a well-rounded education, which means balancing academic achievements with extracurricular activities and community involvement to make your admission application stand out.

3. Write Good Personal Statements and Essays

Your personal statements and essays are powerful tools in your scholarship application arsenal. Many of the Ontario scholarships listed here require you to write meticulous essays that reflect your authentic voice, goals, and experiences so you should put the necessary time and effort into brainstorming and writing them. Some of these Ontario scholarships ask for specific details, even a specific narrative (how you’ve overcome obstacles; how you’ve contributed to your community) so remember to keep these requirements in mind when writing your early drafts. Delve into your unique journey, emphasizing how the scholarship will catalyze your academic and personal growth. After you’ve written a few drafts, get feedback from mentors and peers to refine your narrative, ensuring clarity and impact. A compelling essay not only captures attention but also illustrates your passion and determination, leaving a lasting impression on the selection committee.

4. Get Good Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation provide vital insights into your character and capabilities, which is why so many of these Ontario scholarships ask for them. You should always choose recommenders who can offer a comprehensive view of your skills, work ethic, and contributions, whether they are former teachers, professionals you’ve known for a long time, or mentors who have observed your achievements closely. When approaching your recommenders, clearly outline the scholarship’s significance and your alignment with its goals to them, so they understand what to write. If needed, give them relevant information (such as your transcripts, letters and essays) and ample time to craft thoughtful, specific recommendations. A full-throated letter of recommendation adds depth to your application, substantiating your suitability for the scholarship and strengthening your overall candidacy.

FAQs

1. What are Ontario scholarships?

Ontario scholarships are financial aid given to high-school and university students who demonstrate academic excellence, financial need or come from disadvantaged backgrounds (or, all three) and are either planning to attend or already attending a post-secondary school in Ontario. 

2. How many Ontario scholarships are there?

There are hundreds of different Ontario scholarships, all of them with their own particular awarding criteria, applicant eligibility and award amounts. 

3. What are Ontario scholarships worth?

Ontario scholarships can range in value from $500 to full-tuition waivers and stipends to cover all the costs of attending a post-secondary school in Ontario. 

4. How can I apply for an Ontario scholarship?

The application process for Ontario scholarships depends on who is sponsoring the scholarship. For private, external scholarships, you will have to apply directly to the organization. But for institutional scholarships you must follow the application instructions for each Ontario scholarship. 

5. What do I have to do to get an Ontario scholarship?

You usually have to have high grades, be engaged in your community or show leadership and initiative by participating in social and human welfare activities. Some Ontario scholarships are also aimed at helping minority and Indigenous students enter higher education, so you must also meet the demographic requirements of certain Ontario scholarships. 

6. Are there any spending restrictions for Ontario scholarships?

Depending on the Ontario scholarship, you may not be given the money directly. Internal scholarships are often credited to your student account and applied directly to your tuition or other school fees. Private scholarship might do this as well, or give you the money in the form of a direct deposit, so there are no spending restrictions. 

7. Do I have to be from Ontario to get an Ontario scholarship?

Some of the Ontario scholarships we listed here are program or school-specific, so you do not have to be from Ontario, but you must at least be studying in Ontario to be eligible, which also applies to the Ontario scholarships for international students. 

8. Is it hard to get an Ontario scholarship?

Scholarships are not always easy to get, but if you have a great academic record, are active in community or social work programs and are able to articulate your goals, and future plans in a well-written essay, you should have as good a chance as anyone else to get an Ontario scholarship. 

To your success,

Your friends at

BeMo Academic Consulting


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