What is a scholarship?
Scholarships may be awarded based on academic merit, extracurricular activities or other distinctions. Scholarships may also have a financial need component. Unlike a loan, though, you don’t have to pay back scholarships. Some scholarships require you to complete an application; for others, you are automatically considered. Know the difference when you’re applying.
Here are some scholarships terms you’ll need to know:
You must submit an application to be considered for the award.
Application Not Required
You are automatically considered for the scholarship when you apply to the university. An example would be entrance scholarships that are based on academic merit (usually your high school marks).
A scholarship that can be awarded to you yearly, as long as you continue to meet all the requirements.
A scholarship that is awarded for 1 year only. Schools that provide these scholarships often offer additional upper-year scholarships that may not be highlighted until you are at that university.
Check out eINFO Scholarship to find which university scholarships are available to you. Most universities also provide lists or search tools to help you look for scholarships, and you can usually find these on the Financial Aid Office website. You can also reach out to the Aboriginal Student Centre at your university for support when applying for scholarships. You’ll find more information about scholarships at your university on our university profiles.
What is a bursary?
A bursary is money awarded based on financial need that you don’t have to pay back. You may also need to provide a budget to demonstrate financial need as part of the application process.
There are many ways to search for bursaries, and we’ve listed some resources and organizations that you might find useful in your search. You can also visit or call the Aboriginal Student Centre at your university for more information about bursaries and their application process.
The Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool is a searchable list of over 750 scholarships and bursaries across Canada, provided by donors and foundations to support Aboriginal learners in their studies.
The Métis Student Bursary is eligible to Métis students who apply through their university’s financial aid office or Aboriginal student centre. This bursary is provided by the Métis Nation of Ontario.
Indspire is an Indigenous-led charity that provides scholarships and bursaries for Indigenous students attending postsecondary education. Indspire’s website gives you information about types of financial aid and their application deadlines.