Canada is one of the most sought-after destinations for higher education. It houses many premier institutions and world-class amenities, offering quality education and unparalleled industrial exposure to the youngsters, be it in any domain of interest. Apart from this, its proximity to the US makes it even more appealing to international students. However, the process of applying for studies abroad can be really overwhelming- and dollar demanding!
The government of Canada and many Colleges offer international students various opportunities to bag scholarship awards, grants, or bursaries to ease the burden of the financial load from their family. To be of some aid, we have elaborated on the criteria, eligibility and selection procedure for applying to the multiple Scholarships available to the meritorious International students interested in studying in Canada. If you are considering to study in Canada, start with the application process 8 to 12 months prior to the intake and remember to stick with the deadlines mentioned by the various Universities.
Before proceeding towards scholarship applications, you must know all details about studying in Canada. Here is a complete guide by Inspirus Education to help you out.
WHAT IS THE BASIC ELIGIBILITY FOR APPLYING TO SCHOLARSHIPS?
Well, scholarly achievements and academic proficiency will definitely give you a major lead over others when competing for scholarship grants. Though the primary criterion is a good academic score, factors such as the choice of destination, subject, and level also have a significant effect on the decision-making. In some scholarships, factors like extra-curricular activities, sports and volunteering can also be used to the advantage.
The following mentioned elements are of umpteenth importance, whether you are applying for the University Scholarships or some External Scholarship.
- ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE
A commendable GPA in your last degree, a stellar Statement of Purpose, carefully drafted CV, a good letter of recommendation and a high score in the Screening Test(s) are a prerequisite for obtaining a decent scholarship.
2. LEADERSHIP ABILITY
It includes both demonstrated and potential leadership abilities. Your involvement in some NGOs as a volunteer; your personal achievements in various arenas like entrepreneurship, business, science sports and studies; your achievements in mentoring and supervisory experience (if any) along with your role in academic societies and student community and project management, are considered while evaluating your application.
Also, your ability to develop as a future leader and your personal vision for the future that defines a meaningful change for the community you work with; establishing clear goals in your SOP and reaching those goals in an efficient, organized and innovative way tells a lot about your frame of mind. Also taking accountability for the consequences of your actions and decisions also reflect your leadership potential. You should be able to deal with complex and tough situations and should have mastery in the presentation of skills and public communications.
3. RESEARCH POTENTIAL
If you are applying for Masters or Research Scholarships, this criterion will be given a good amount of weight. Your research potential is demonstrated by your involvement in projects, research history, your proposed research and its calculated impact in the field of interest along with its expected outcomes.
You should mention certain key factors like critical thinking, application of knowledge, judgment ability, originality of the project, initiative, autonomy, and enthusiasm for research in your Personal Leadership Statement essay. This must be backed by strong references to validate the same.
4. COMMUNICATION SKILLS
Having relevant skills of interest and excellent communication skills are essential to winning a good scholarship amount. Being able to communicate effectively and confidently reflects your persona and leadership abilities.
Broadly, there are three categories of scholarships available to students:
- Merit-based Scholarships: As the name suggests, these scholarship amounts are granted only to the exceptionally talented students having a brilliant track record, top-notch letter of recommendations, leadership skills and the ability to contribute maximally to the world they inhabit.
- Need-based Scholarships: This is for those underprivileged students who are in dire need of financial assistance and the entire income of the family is not enough to pay the fees. The entire document is scanned and verified several times before giving this scholarship to someone.
- Scholarships for Sportsperson: If you have an extraordinary sports record and achievements in that field, you might get some scholarship which might not cover your entire tuition fees as they are less in amount.
HOW TO APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIPS?
The application procedure is dependent on two factors i.e. University requirements and screening criteria. Consider the following generalized steps when applying for a scholarship:
- Devoting considerable time to reading the rules and requirements not only helps in minimizing mistakes during the application but also reduces the time taken for scholarship submission.
- Before applying for scholarships online, ensure that you have all your documents ready to be uploaded, such as your latest qualifications, all certifications, ID proofs and digitally scanned photographs.
- You are expected to follow the mentioned guidelines for writing an effective scholarship essay which should highlight your strengths and illustrate your experiences. Scholarship reviewers tend to judge the students primarily based on their Statement of Purpose (SOP) and Letter of Recommendation (LOR) from your professors who have overseen your period of studying.
- You should mark the deadline for applying to the various scholarships on your calendar and complete it well on time.
Bagging a scholarship is a very competitive affair. The concerned authority has to rifle through numerous applications before coming to a decision. Therefore, ensure that your application is unique and is direct, to the point, simple and transparent. It is imperative to present the reviewers with a stellar application so that you stand out of the crowd and are able to secure a place in the interview round.
Best of Luck!
Author Bio: Bakhtawar Krishnan is the Founder & Director of Inspirus Education, leading test-prep institute and study abroad consultancy. Bakhtawar brings with her over 30 years of diverse experience; on both, national as well as international levels. An accomplished professional in the field of higher education abroad, she has helped thousands of students realize their dream of studying at esteemed universities all over the world.