Aboriginal Graduate Fellowships
The University of British Columbia offers multi-year fellowships to Master's and doctoral Indigenous students. Award winners are selected on the basis of academic merit through an annual competition, administered by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies in consultation with the First Nations House of Learning. Approximately a dozen new fellowships are offered each year.
Each fellowship provides a stipend of $18,200 per year for doctoral students or a stipend of $16,175 per year for Master’s students. Additionally, AGF recipients are eligible to receive tuition funding. Tuition funding will not exceed the current value of the standard doctoral or Master's degree tuition fees. Applicants for Master's funding will receive fellowship funding until the end of their second year of Master’s studies; applicants for doctoral funding will receive fellowship funding for four years or until the end of their fifth year of doctoral studies, whichever comes first. In all cases, continued fellowship support is conditional on satisfactory academic progress. Recipients of Master’s fellowship funding must re-apply to be considered for doctoral funding.
- All Indigenous students are eligible to apply, but priority is given to Indigenous students whose traditional territory falls, at least in part, within Canada. This includes Canadian First Nations, Métis or Inuit students and may include Indigenous students from Alaska and other states of the USA. The University may request further information to confirm Indigenous eligibility.
- Applicants may or may not be UBC graduate students at the time of application – the competition is open to both incoming and continuing graduate students. However, awardees must be enrolled as full-time graduate students at the UBC-Vancouver campus for the 2020-2021 academic year in order to receive an Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship through this competition. Students in the following programs are not eligible: MEng, MM, MBA, and PharmD.
- To be eligible to receive Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship funding, award holders are expected to devote full-time hours to the research or studies for which they were funded, and are required to make satisfactory academic progress throughout their funding period.
- As research potential or ability is one of the primary selection criteria, AGF recipients are to maintain registration in graduate programs that include a significant research component (e.g., thesis or major research project). Recipients who plan to transfer to a graduate program that does not include a significant research component should first consult with the Graduate Awards team.
- Months of Study
- To be eligible to hold AGF funding as a Master’s student, applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2019, no more than 12 months of full-time (or full-time equivalent) Master’s-level study (at UBC and/or elsewhere). Successful applicants for Master's-level funding are eligible to receive AGF funding until the end of their second year of Master's-level study
- To be eligible to hold AGF funding as a doctoral student, applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2019, no more than 48 months of full-time (or full-time equivalent) doctoral-level study (at UBC and/or elsewhere). Successful applicants for doctoral-level (second point immediately above) are eligible to receive up to four years of AGF funding or to receive AGF funding until the end of their fifth year of doctoral-level study, whichever comes first.
- All previous studies at the graduate level, regardless of institution and discipline, will be included in determining eligibility.
Academic excellence (applicants for Master's funding - 33.3%; applicants for doctoral funding - 20%)
- Academic record
- Scholarships and awards held
- Duration of previous studies
Research ability or potential (applicants for Master's funding - 33.3%; applicants for doctoral funding - 50%)
- Quality of contributions to research and development, including publications and conference presentations
- Relevance of work experience and academic training to field of proposed research
- Significance, feasibility, and merit of proposed research, and justification for location of tenure
- Ability to think critically
- Ability to apply skills and knowledge
- Initiative and autonomy
- Enthusiasm for research
- Determination and ability to complete projects within an appropriate period of time
Communication, interpersonal and leadership abilities (applicants for Master's funding - 33.3%; applicants for doctoral funding - 30%)
- The ability or potential to communicate scientific concepts clearly and logically in written and oral formats. For example, this could include:
- quality of the application's presentation
- participation in preparing publications
- awards for oral presentations or papers
- Professional and relevant extracurricular interactions and collaborations. For example, this could include:
- supervisory experience
- project management
- chairing committees
- organizing conferences and meetings
- elected positions held
Preference will be given to applicants who demonstrate contributions and/or connection to the Indigenous community.
Applicants must check with their graduate program regarding their program’s internal application deadline. Internal application deadlines are normally several weeks before the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies deadline.
Applicants must submit the following materials to their graduate program at UBC. Applications may not be submitted directly to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
- Completed Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship application.
- Outline of Proposed Research (see AGF application instructions for details)
- Academic records for all university-level studies (including studies undertaken but not completed) up to December 31, 2019.
- Current students: for institutions other than UBC, only official transcripts will be accepted. These may be original or certified true copies provided by the applicant's graduate program.
- Applicants for 2020/21 academic year: unofficial transcripts will be accepted only if they were submitted with the application for admission.
- UBC transcripts for all students with UBC grades: the applicant's "Academic History" printed from the SISC by the applicant's graduate program will be accepted.
- Please note that students must request certified true copies of transcripts from their graduate program, not from the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
- Two completed Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship reference forms. Only reference forms signed by the person providing the reference are acceptable; original, faxed, and scanned copies sent by e-mail directly to the student’s graduate program are acceptable.
- Canadian Common CV (see AGF application instructions for details)
Graduate programs are to:
- Verify eligibility of applicants
- Review and rank applicants
- Complete an AGF Nomination Form for each nominee
- Forward nomination form(s) and application(s) to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, 14 February 2020.
Important note: The Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship (AGF) program is competitive; not all applicants will win AGF funding. The program is intended to complement, rather than provide a substitute for, graduate funding programs such as the Four Year Fellowship (4YF) and Graduate Support Initiative (GSI) programs. It is expected that graduate programs will consider recommending their Indigenous students for funding from the AGF competition in addition to, rather than in place of, considering them for funding from the 4YF, GSI and other graduate funding programs. On the AGF Nomination Form, graduate program are asked if their doctoral nominees are also being recommended for funding from the 4YF program. If so, and the nominee is subsequently ranked high enough to be offered AGF funding, the student will receive the 4YF and an AGF top up of $2,000 per year for the duration of their 4YF.
Submitting nominations to G+PS:
Graduate programs are to submit all nomination materials as electronic, rather than hard-copy, files. Graduate programs are to upload their files to their UBC Workspace folder (named G+PS Awards – GradProgram; e.g., G+PS Awards - EDST).
Each student's application should be submitted as a single PDF with materials in the following order:
- AGF nomination form
- Outline of Proposed Research
- 2 Reference Forms
The naming convention to be used is: PROGRAM_AGF_LastName_FirstName.pdf. For example, an application file for Jane Smith from EDST would be called EDST_AGF_Smith_Jane.pdf.
In consultation with the First Nations House of Learning, the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will convene an adjudication committee made up of UBC faculty members. The committee will review the applications and select the successful applicants.
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will notify graduate programs of the competition results for their applicants.