Indigenous Graduate Fellowships

Deadline

Likely in February 2025

Annual Value

$16,175 stipend plus tuition per year for Master's students; $18,200 stipend plus tuition per year for doctoral students

Citizenship

Canadian
Permanent Resident
International

Degree Level

Masters
Doctoral
 

Please note that the Indigenous Graduate Fellowship was known as the Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship until 2023.

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. 

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, IGF recipients are eligible to receive tuition funding. Tuition funding will not exceed the current value of 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.

Effective from the 2023-2024 academic year onwards, the IGF is also offering opportunities for (i) Indigenous PhD students in their fourth year to apply for a fifth year of funding and (ii) research master’s and PhD students to apply for research funding.

 

 

Eligibility

Eligibility to Apply for IGF funding

  • From the 2023-2024 academic year onwards, eligibility for the IGF is extended to students in professional and coursework-only master’s programs (previously, only research-based programs were eligible).

  • 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 status graduate students at the UBC Vancouver campus for the 2024-2025 academic year in order to receive an Indigenous Graduate Fellowship through this competition.

  • Students in programs that are not administered by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (such as MBA, MEng, MEL, MM, MDS) are not eligible.

  • Months of study

    • Master's: To be eligible to hold IGF funding as a master’s student, applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2023, no more than 12 months of full-time (or full-time equivalent) master’s-level study.

      • Successful applicants for master's-level funding are eligible to receive IGF funding until the end of their second year of master's-level study.

    • Doctoral: To be eligible to hold IGF funding as a doctoral student, applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2023, no more than 48 months of full-time (or full-time equivalent) doctoral-level study. For applicants who have transferred to the PhD from the master’s without completing the master's, eligibility is counted from the date of transfer.

      • Successful applicants for doctoral-level (second point immediately above) are eligible to receive up to four years of IGF funding or to receive IGF 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.

Eligibility to hold IGF funding

  • To be eligible to receive Indigenous Graduate Fellowship funding, award holders are expected to devote full-time hours to the research or studies for which they were funded (full-time status), and are required to make satisfactory academic progress throughout their funding period. 

  • Applicants are not eligible to receive IGF stipend funding concurrently with external (e.g., Tri-Agency) funding that equals or exceeds the IGF stipend amount.

  • As of September 2022, Indigenous students receiving Band funding are eligible to receive tuition awards (ex. International Tuition Award, 4YF Tuition Award, IGF Tuition Award).

  • Please note that policies regarding the amount of the IGF Tuition Award are in alignment with the 4YF Guidelines policy for tuition awards (see guidelines, 'Award Values',  'Tuition').

Evaluation Criteria

Evaluation Criteria Weightings

  Professional/course-based Master’s  Research-based Master's  Doctoral 
Academic excellence 50% 33.3% 20%
Research ability or potential 0% 33.3% 50%
Communication, interpersonal, leadership and professional abilities and qualifications  50% 33.3% 30%

Academic excellence 

  • Academic record
  • Scholarships and awards held

Research ability or potential 

  • 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
  • Judgment
  • Originality
  • Initiative and autonomy
  • Enthusiasm for research
  • Determination and ability to complete projects within an appropriate period of time

Communication, interpersonal, leadership and professional abilities and qualifications

  • 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:
    • mentoring
    • teaching
    • supervisory experience
    • project management
    • chairing committees
    • organizing conferences and meetings
    • elected positions held
    • professional experience

Preference will be given to applicants who demonstrate contributions and/or connection to the Indigenous community (as demonstrated through information provided in “Contribution and/or Connection to Indigenous community” section of the application form).

Application Procedures

Applicants must submit their application materials to their graduate program at UBC by the deadline of February 16, 2024, at 4:00 PT. Application materials submitted directly to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will not be accepted.

Summary of Required Application Materials

  • Application Form
  • Outline of Proposed Research (for research-based master’s and doctoral applicants) or Outline of Professional Aspirations (for professional or course-based master’s applicants)
  • Transcripts
  • Canadian Common CV (CCV) (for research-based master’s and doctoral applicants) or CV form (for professional or course-based master’s applicants)
  • Two reference forms

Refer to the Application Instructions posted here for details on each of the above items.

Some applicants may be eligible to apply via the main IGF competition or the IGF 5th Year Award competition. Please contact graduate.awards@ubc.ca to discuss the most appropriate application route.

Nomination Procedures

Graduate programs are to:

  • Verify eligibility of applicants (e.g., months of study)
  • Review and rank applicants (review and rank master's and doctoral together)
  • Complete an IGF Nomination Form for each nominee
  • Forward nomination form(s) and application(s) to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies by 4:00 pm PT on Friday, March 1 2024.

Important note: The Indigenous Graduate Fellowship (IGF) program is competitive; not all applicants will be awarded IGF 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 IGF competition in addition to, rather than in place of, considering them for funding from the 4YF, GSI and other graduate funding programs. On the IGF 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 IGF funding, the student will receive the 4YF and an IGF top up of $5,000 per year for the duration of their 4YF, and the graduate program will be allocated an additional 4YF to replace the 4YF awarded to their Indigenous student.

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 Sharepoint folder (within the umbrella folder ‘Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies – Programs – Folder Structure”)(named “FACULTY – DEPT“; e.g., “ARTS – PSYC”).

Each student's application should be submitted as a single PDF with materials in the following order:

  1. IGF Nomination Form
  2. Application
  3. Outline of Proposed Research (research master's and doctoral applicants) / Outline of Professional Aspirations (professional/course-based master's applicants)
  4. Transcripts
  5. Two (2) Reference Forms
  6. CCV (research master's and doctoral applicants) / CV form (professional/course-based master's applicants)

The naming convention to be used is: PROGRAM_IGF_LastName_FirstName.pdf. For example, an application file for Jane Smith from EDST would be called EDST_IGF_Smith_Jane.pdf.

Adjudication Procedures

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.

Further Information

For more information, please contact Bree Wilson, Graduate Awards Coordinator, at bree.wilson@ubc.ca.

 
 

Follow these steps to apply to UBC Graduate School!