The Indigenous Mentorship and Paid Research Experience for Summer Students (IMPRESS) offers Indigenous undergraduate students from McGill or other Quebec post-secondary institutions, a unique experiential learning opportunity to conduct research with a McGill professor, or to work on a project at one of our units — all while being paid! Some of our projects are open to Indigenous undergraduate students nationwide (see Healthy Brains, Healthy Lives projects).

The program aims to strengthen their research skills, boost their career-readiness, and expose them to pathways to graduate school, through activities that help them build their skillsets and connect with peers. Each participating student is paired with an Indigenous graduate student mentor who offers support and guidance throughout their experience.

More information for IMPRESS mentors:

All McGill graduate students, including master’s and PhD students, as well as students completing a professional degree (e.g., MDCM, BCL/JD) are eligible to mentor IMPRESS students. 

Mentors offer support and guidance to their mentee throughout the program. Mentors are expected to meet with their IMPRESS mentee regularly to discuss academic and professional opportunities, their own professional journeys, and to help their mentee navigate their relationship with their IMPRESS project host. Mentors will be required to meet with their IMPRESS mentee for two hours a week. Mentors and mentees have the freedom to schedule their meetings at their convenience. Mentors are also encouraged to participate in some of our IMPRESS social and cultural activities. All non-Indigenous mentors will be asked to take part in two cultural competency training sessions to prepare them for the program.

IMPRESS 2023 collage zine

IMPRESS students came together to reflect on the question "What does 'Indigenous Mentorship' mean to you" through a collaborative collage zine! 

IMPRESS undergraduate students on campus

IMPRESS 2022 wrapped up with success!

Over an eight-week period this past June and July, IMPRESS 2022 participants were paired with a professor or a professional from a McGill unit. The McGill Reporter writes about the success of IMPRESS and how students benefitted from their experience with our program. Stay tuned for IMPRESS 2023!

Award winning programming

The IMPRESS team's "commitment to quality, collaboration, and innovation resulted in a comprehensive forward-looking program that goes beyond conventional mentorship experiences and provides students with a diverse range of opportunities for community building, deeper cultural connection, personal growth, and professional development,” said Diana Dutton, Interim Vice-Principal (Administration and Finance), and Associate Vice-Principal, Human Resources, during the award presentation. 

“With this program, the IMPRESS team has empowered students and positively impacted supervisors and the broader university community, while making significant contributions to McGill"

How it works

IMPRESS takes place over an eight-week period (June -July), 20 hours per week:

  • 15 hours in a research setting
  • 5 hours in professional development, and leadership training, as well as attending a variety of social engagements and cultural activities.


  • Indigenous undergraduate students in Quebec: All Indigenous undergraduate students enrolled at a post-secondary institution in Quebec are eligible to participate in IMPRESS. Students who have graduated in May 2023 are also eligible.
  • Out-of-province Indigenous undergraduate students: Projects listed in collaboration with Healthy Brains, Healthy Lives are open to out-of-province Indigenous undergraduate students (i.e., enrolled in an undergraduate program at a Canadian post-secondary institution outside of Quebec).

Activities might include:

  • Meeting with your host professor/professional for training and direction
  • Connecting with your graduate student mentor for advice or guidance
  • Reading literature and undertaking other research activities
  • Learning interview techniques
  • Carrying out lab work, attending lab meetings, or events specific to your professor’s area of work
  • Attending professional and leadership development workshops, events, and social and cultural activities
  • Journaling about your experience


What can I get from IMPRESS?

  • Gain hands-on research experience
  • Boost your overall career-readiness through professional skills training
  • Build professional networks
  • Increase your insight into pathways toward graduate studies
  • Make strong connections and build community with Indigenous graduate mentors and IMPRESS peers
  • Help newly admitted students get acquainted with McGill
  • Receive a letter of recommendation for your time as an IMPRESS intern

You will also receive a $5,000 stipend for your participation in the program.

Please note that the eligibility, monetary award, and time commitment for all Healthy Brains, Healthy Lives projects vary from the standard model. For more details, please contact a member of our team at: impress [at]



  • Please contact impress [at] for more information on the program.
  • Persons with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations for any part of the application process may contact, impress [at]

Download the postcard

   Cree    English/French    Inuktitut    Mohawk


Will I be paid?

Yes! Each participating IMPRESS intern receives a $5,000 stipend for their work.


Will I receive credits for participating?

No, however, each intern will receive a letter of recommendation for their time as an intern.


I’m not from Montreal, but I want to participate, is there money for travel and accommodation?

Although each situation will be assessed on a case-by-case basis, we do not want travel and accommodation to be a barrier to your participation. Please contact impress [at] to discuss your circumstances.


What kind of opportunities are available?

Please follow the link on ‘how to apply’ — each host project is posted there for you to review.


When do I find out if I’m accepted?

All applicants will be contacted with a decision regarding their candidacy.


How can I sign up to be a host or Indigenous graduate student mentor?

Please contact us at impress [at]


I’m a recently admitted student, am I still eligible?

Yes, absolutely. All Indigenous undergraduate students registered at a post-secondary institution in Canada are eligible.

McGill University is on land that long served as a site of meeting and exchange amongst
Indigenous peoples, including the Haudenosaunee and Anishinabeg nations. We acknowledge
and thank the diverse Indigenous people whose footsteps have marked this territory on which
peoples of the world now gather.
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