Rio Tinto Graduate Scholarship Program


Check with graduate program; Graduate program nomination deadline: likely May 2020

Annual Value



Permanent Resident

Degree Level


As part of its ongoing commitment to innovation and research, Rio Tinto offers an $18,000 graduate scholarship for a UBC graduate student in a field of pure or applied science related to Rio Tinto's activities.



To be eligible, applicants must be enrolled or accepted in a first year Masters or first or second year Doctoral studies in 2019-2020 academic year. The scholarship is non-renewable and students who received the scholarship in the past are not eligible to apply again.

Eligible Research Areas

  • Aluminum metallurgy
  • Electrolysis
  • Hydrometallurgy
  • Environment
  • Analytical technologies
  • Modeling and control systems
  • Data Science

The programme’s selection committee will consider any research projects in these areas.

Applicants must be enrolled or accepted in a full-time study program for a graduate degree.

Evaluation Criteria

The criteria used by the committee to decide the recipient are:

  • Academic document including distinctions
  • Publications (depending of the level of advancement)
  • Work experience / Leadership / Social implication
  • Quality of the reference letters
  • Relevance of the topic for the Aluminium industry

Application Procedures

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.  The following application materials are required. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

  • Cover letter listing:
    • student name
    • UBC student number
    • UBC graduate program
    • name of UBC supervisor
    • names of those providing letters of recommendation
  • Proof of enrollment or acceptance
  • Project description: must include proposed timelines. Maximum four pages, double spaced.
  • Official, up-to-date transcripts for all university-level studies (including studies undertaken but not completed).
    • UBC transcripts must be original and official paper transcripts, received by the graduate program in sealed envelope from Enrolment Services.
    • Transcripts from institutions other than UBC must be official, but can be original or "certified true" copies provided by the applicant's graduate programs. 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 letters of recommendation from professors or researchers (one of whom must be your research supervisor), who have followed the applicant’s progress during his or her university studies. Only recommendation letters signed by the person providing the reference are acceptable; original, faxed, and scanned copies sent by e-mail are acceptable.
  • Updated CV.

Nomination Procedures

Graduate programs are to review and rank all applications submitted from their students. Graduate programs are to forward their top-ranked applications to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies via the grad program Workspace folder. All application materials must be received by Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies by 4:00pm on Wednesday, 8 May 2019. A complete nomination package must include:

  • Graduate program nomination letter outlining ranking of applicants, and the rationale for ranking used (two pages maximum)
  • Application materials listed above for each nominated student

The program nomination letter and all application materials should be submitted as a PDF files. The following naming conventions should be used:

  • nomination letter: RIOTINTO_DEPT_Nomination.pdf (e.g. RIOTINTO_MECH_Nomination.pdf for Mechanical Engineering)
  • each student's application file: RIOTINTO_DEPT_LastName_FirstName.pdf (e.g. application from Jane Smith from Mechanical Engineering would be named RIOTINTO_MECH_Smith_Jane.pdf).
    • order of files in each applications should be:
      1. Cover letter
      2. Proof of enrollment or acceptance
      3. Project description
      4. Transcripts
      5. Two recommendation letters
      6. CV

Adjudication Procedures

The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will convene an adjudication commitee composed of UBC faculty members to review nominations submitted by graduate programs and select UBC's nominees to the national competition. Only one fellowship per university will be awarded at any one time. Rio Tinto may decide not to award a fellowship if the project fails to meet the criteria and standards of excellence set by the selection committee.

Further Information

Questions about this award opportunity should be directed to Angela Rizzo.