Scholarships and Support

Support for Indigenous students is key to their success.  The Indigenous Health Professions (IHP) Program realizes that many aspects of support are unique for Indigenous students.  Support programs are currently in place for some of the schools (see below) and we are developing more support programs to help students achieve their goals.  These programs include or will include:

  • Indigenous health professional student welcoming event, workshops and conferences offered annually
  • Indigenous health student gatherings hosted by the IHP Program throughout the school year
  • Partnership with First Peoples' House of McGill
  • Elder-in-residence providing one-on-one support, circles, and ceremonies 
  • Mentorship
  • Student scholarships

Scholarship Opportunities 

Class of Medicine 1978 Bursary

Established in 2015 by the Class of Medicine 1978 on the occasion of their 35th Anniversary reunion. Awarded by the Scholarships and Student Aid Office to students in the M.D., C.M. program on the basis of demonstrated financial need and good academic standing. Preference will be given to students from under-represented groups, in particular Indigenous students.

Note: These are in-course bursaries administered through the Scholarships and Student Aid Office; please refer to this website to apply for financial aid. The annual disbursement is approximately $5000, which could be awarded to one or more students.


The Elaine Kilabuk Award 2023
Deadline - October 22, 2023
This scholarship is intended to help support the training of an Inuit student from Nunavut in medicine at McGill. Should there not be an Inuit student available, an Indigenous student will be awarded this scholarship per the criteria found within the document. The award is named after Dr. Elaine Kilabuk, an Inuk medical graduate from Nunavut.

Dr. John H. Burgess Distinguished Scholarship (McGill University)
Established in 2011 by John H Burgess, B.Sc.'54, M.D.,C.M.'58. Awarded by the Faculty of Medicine to one or more students from Indigenous communities in Canada on the basis of academic merit, with preference given to students of Inuit, Métis or First Nations heritage or to one or more students nominated by the Widening Participation Committee that attends to diversity and equity in recruitment and admission to Medicine at McGill University. For over three decades Dr. Burgess demonstrated his commitment to serving the Inuit in Canada's North as a consulting cardiologist. Dr. Burgess wishes to continue his legacy of service by supporting the training of future physicians from underserved regions in Canada.
Scholarship value: varies. May be renewed.

Dr. John G. Cassils Major Entrance Scholarship (McGill University)
Established in 2015 by Dr. John G. Cassils, B.Sc.'61, M.D.'66 (University of Alberta) for one or more students in the M.D.,C.M. program from Indigenous communities in Canada on the basis of academic merit. Preference will be given to students of First Nations, Inuit or Métis heritage. Awarded by the Faculty of Medicine's Scholarships Committee on the recommendation of the Office of Admissions.
Scholarship value: varies.

The Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA) and the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada (PFC) Indigenous Student Award for physiotherapy education

Indspire Scholarships

The Indigenous Health Professions Program is inclusive of everyone who self-identifies as an Indigenous person. Some scholarships, reserved seats for admissions and other programs are restricted to status First Nations, registered Inuit and Métis registered with one of the five provincial Métis organizations recognized by the Métis National Council (Métis BC Nation, Métis Nation of Alberta, Manitoba Métis Federation, Métis Nation of Saskatchewan and the Métis Nation of Ontario).

Financial support

The IHPP can connect students to various other support units on campus that provide further information on financial support opportunities available across campus. Examples of other support units include:

Additional Faculty or Unit specific opportunities can be discovered through the Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool provided by Indigenous Services Canada.

When possible the IHPP also earmarks some of its own operating budget to provide financial support for Indigenous students in the Health Professions. These funds are usually provided for material support such as the purchase of textbooks, program specific equipment, conference attendance fees etc.

Contact us via email or during our office hours with any questions and we’ll guide you as best as we can.


There are many mentorship and support initiatives for Indigenous students within the Faculty of Medicine. Indigenous students have access to a range of services and support to ensure success in their respective programs and to flourish in the community. Looking forward, interprofessional mentoring programs are in development.


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