Scholarships and Financial Aid

"Indigenous-specific financial aid is available. It's definitely worth applying." - Anonymous Indigenous Student, 2020

Explore Scholarships, Awards, and Bursaries for Indigenous Students

Internal Awards and Bursaries

First Nations, Metis and Inuit students are eligible to apply for any of the University’s general scholarships and bursaries. There are also scholarships and bursaries specifically for Indigenous students. The First Peoples' House also has information about financial aid. 

The Provost's Indigenous Achievement Award

This is a $5,000 renewable admissions award given to Indigenous students with exceptional high school or CEGEP grades. One to three awards are issued every year. Learn more here

McGill's First Year Indigenous Award with Indspire

This is a one-time, $2,000 award given to Indigenous students entering their first year. This award is non-renewable and non-deferrable. However, recipients are permitted to hold it alongside other scholarships or bursaries received from McGill or other sources. Learn more here

McGill's Indigenous Bursary with Indspire

This is an award ranging from $1,000- $10,000 based on demonstrated financial need, available to Indigenous students pursuing a degree program. Students may re-apply to Indspire in each year of study. Learn more here

New Sun Joy Harvie Maclaren Undergraduate Scholarship in Environment

A $4,500 award with preference given to Canadian Inuit and Aboriginal students enrolled in the second or third year of the B.Sc.(Ag.Env.Sc.) Major in Environment (award may be given twice to the same student)

CIRC Scholarship and Fellowship Opportunities for Indigenous Students

Cultural and Indigenous Research in Counselling Psychology (CIRC) has compiled a list of funding opportunities for current and prospective Indigenous students at McGill, at both the undergraduate and graduate level. View the list here

In-Course Financial Aid Program

If you have exhausted these funding opportunity and/or other core funding (from band or other government agencies), and you are still facing financial challenges, there is still help!

The In-Course Financial Aid program is available to all students studying at McGill. Learn more here

Graduate Student Funding

Visit the Future Graduate Studies Website for information about graduate funding. Learn more here

New Sun Joy Harvie Maclaren Graduate Entrance Scholarship

A $10,000 award with preference given to Canadian Indigenous students studying nutrition, dietetics, agriculture or environmental sciences on the Macdonald Campus. The award recognizes academic excellence,community involvement and leadership.

External Awards and Bursaries

Canada Post Awards for Indigenous Students

Canada Post gives $2,000 grants to Indigenous Peoples who have renewed their educational learning. You’re eligible to apply if you:

  • Are a Canadian and a member of a First Nation, Métis or Inuit community
  • Have been out of school for 1 year or more and are returning
  • Have already returned to school and completed 1 full year of studies
  • Have never received this award in the past (you can apply as many times as you want, but you can only receive the award once)

Visit the Canada Post website for more details on applications and deadlines.

Gillis Purcell Memorial Journalism Scholarship for Indigenous Peoples

An award of $4000 to encourage Indigenous Peoples to pursue a career in journalism through a combination of studies at a Canadian post-secondary institution and experience in a newsroom. Scholarship recipients with appropriate experience and qualifications may also receive an offer of temporary employment or other opportunities at The Canadian Press, at the sole discretion of the scholarship provider. Learn more here

Grand River Post Secondary Education Office

The GRPSEO offers a variety of scholarships and bursaries. Learn more here

Helen Bassett Commemorative Student Award

Every year, NWAC hands out the Helen Bassett Commemorative Award to four young Indigenous women, Two-Spirit, or gender-diverse students in the amount of $1,000 each. Awards are provided to four Indigenous youth from each of the four directions: North, South, East, and West. Learn more here

Husky Energy Scholarships for Indigenous Students

Husky helps Indigenous students living in communities near its operations pursue post-secondary education. The Company also provides opportunities for work experience and professional development through the Indigenous Mentorship Program. Learn more here

Indigenous Bar Association Law Student Scholarship

Each year two scholarships of $2000.00 are awarded annually by the Indigenous Bar Association Law Student Scholarship Foundation. The scholarships will be presented each year to two Indigenous law students that best demonstrates financial need, academic merit and commitment to Indigenous legal matters. The scholarships are awarded during the IBA annual conference in October of each year. Learn more here

Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool

The Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool is a searchable list of 689 bursaries, scholarships and incentives across Canada. It provides information about the award including a description, value, institution, deadline (if applicable) and contact information. Access the tool here.

Indigenous Services Canada

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) offers several scholarship programs aimed at supporting First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students. Click here to learn more about financial aid through ISC.


Since 2004, Indspire has provided over $115 million in financial support to more than 37,500 First Nations, Inuit and Métis students. All Building Brighter Futures donations are matched by the Government of Canada allowing us to be double the impact for students. Learn more and apply for scholarships and bursaries through Indspire here.

Jose Amaujaq Kusugak Scholarship Program

Jose Amaujaq Kusugak dedicated his life to Nunavut and the advancement of Inuit rights. His passion and dedication to education and the promotion and preservation of Inuit language enabled Inuit to make many strides. Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (NTI) is ensuring Jose’s ability to inspire Inuit continues by awarding two annual $5,000 scholarships to students pursuing post-secondary academic studies in the fields of education, Inuit language, or the advancement of Inuit rights. Learn more here

KPMG's Indigenous Student Awards

First launched in 2012, KPMG’s Indigenous Student Awards program is administered by Indspire’s Building Brighter Futures: Bursaries, Scholarships and Awards program that is available to Indigenous post-secondary students in the pursuit of university or college education across Canada. This award is open to all Indigenous candidates (First Nations, Inuit and Metis) who are attending post-secondary institutions (i.e. college or university) with demonstrated financial need for contributions to education costs. Preference will be given to students studying in the following academic programs: Business Administration, Public Administration, Accounting, Information Technology, Human Resources, Communications and Marketing. Learn more here

Makivik Scholarship Fund for Nunavik Beneficiaries

The Makivik Scholarship program was created to promote and encourage post-secondary education for Inuit Beneficiaries of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement (JBNQA). Learn more about eligibility and the application process here

National Union Scholarship for Aboriginal Canadians

The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) offers four scholarships of $1,500 each aimed at Indigenous students. They are open to all Indigenous Canadian students who plan to enter the first year of a Canadian public post-secondary education institution full-time in 2017 — 2018 and who are the children, grandchildren or foster children of a NUPGE member. Scholarships will be awarded for the best 750 — 1,000 word essay on: The importance of quality public services in enhancing the quality of life of Indigenous Canadians. Learn more here

Native American Scholarships Fund

The Society for American Archaeology established the Native American Scholarships Fund to foster a sense of shared purpose and positive interaction between archaeologists and Native Americans. Scholarships are open to all Native peoples from anywhere in the Americas, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, and Indigenous Pacific Islanders. Learn more about available scholarships here

NSERC Indigenous Student Ambassadors

The NSERC Indigenous Student Ambassadors (NISA) grant aims to engage Indigenous students and fellows in promoting interest and participation in the natural sciences and engineering (NSE) by visiting Canada’s Indigenous communities and schools and sharing their research and education experiences or participating in science promotion events and activities. Grants have a value of up to $5,000. Visit the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) website to learn more about eligibility and the application process.

RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program

The RBC Aboriginal Student Awards Program offers 10 scholarships of up to $4,000 each to Indigenous students in any area of study. Click here to learn more about eligibility and the application process.

TD Aboriginal Baccalaureate Scholarship

The TD Aboriginal Nursing Fund will support First Nation Status or Non-status, Inuit or Métis nurses at the Bachelor, Master’s, PhD and Nurse Practitioner levels. This fund aims to support Canadian Indigenous nursing students who intend to practice nursing preferably in Indigenous communities, Indigenous health settings or any health settings. Learn more here

External Funding for Graduate Students

Visit the Future Graduate Students website for information about internal and external funding for all graduate students at McGill here

SSHRC - Indigenous Talent Measures

The Social Services and Humanities Research Council is committed to supporting research by and with Indigenous peoples—in Canada and abroad—as well as Indigenous students and postdoctoral researchers seeking to advance careers in the social sciences and humanities.

SSHRC’s Indigenous Talent Measures aim to support graduate students and postdoctoral researchers applying for Doctoral Awards (Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships Program—Doctoral Scholarships and SSHRC Doctoral Fellowships) or SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships.

Learn more about SSHRC's Indigenous Talent Measures here


Visit the Scholarships and Student Aid website for more information, here

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