Spring Graduate Awards Competition


Likely in May 2025

Annual Value

$150 to $25,000


Permanent Resident

Degree Level


A number of University awards for the upcoming academic year are available to current and incoming graduate students.  The maximum value of funding that can be offered to a student is $16,000, up to $22,000 for the #491 Rick Hansen "Man in Motion" Fellowship, or $25,000 for the #6495 Andrew Nord Fellowships in Rheumatology and the #6887 Clifford Alexander Robson and Else Loella Robson Memorial Scholarship respectively.



Registration Status

Students must be registered, full-time graduate students during the period of the award (September 2024 to August 2025). Incoming students (ie. will start in September 2024 or January 2025) are also eligible to apply (ex. a successful Spring Awards applicant starting in January 2025 could receive funding covering January to August 2025).

Program Eligibility

Eligible graduate programs must have a significant research component. A significant research component is considered to be original, autonomous research that leads to the completion of a thesis, major research project, dissertation, scholarly publication, performance, recital, and/or exhibit that is merit/expert-reviewed at the institutional level as a requirement for completion of the program. 

With the exception of those programs listed below, students in all fields of graduate study are eligible to apply. Exceptions:

  • Programs that are not administered by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (such as MBA, MM, MDS)
  • Programs that do not include a significant research component (ie. coursework-based programs such as MPPGA, MOT, MPH, MPT, and MKIN)
  • Doctor of Pharmacy

Other Funding

While award recipients will be selected based on the evaluation criteria, priority will be given to eligible candidates who do not hold significant scholarship funding (i.e., $16,000 or higher) for the 2024/25 academic year (September 2024 to August 2025).  If a student is offered Spring Awards funding, and later receives other scholarship funding of $16,000 or higher for the same period, the Spring Awards funding offer would normally be rescinded.


  • Some of the Spring Graduate Awards have very niche award descriptions (eligibility requirements).  For example, the #6362 award ‘James and Setsuko Thurlow Scholarship in Peace and Disarmament Studies’.  If a Spring Graduate Award receives a very low number of eligible applications, it may be awarded to a student who already has significant scholarship funding.

Individual Award Eligibility Criteria

Additional eligibility criteria differ between awards, and students might be eligible for multiple awards. The list of awards is available in the Application Form - PART 2. To be eligible to receive funding, applicants must meet all the criteria for each award they apply for.  Applicants will not be considered for an award if they do not clearly meet the criteria for the award.  

Months of study

In addition to eligibility requirements specified by each available award, the following criteria apply:

Master's students

Applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2023 between 0 and 12 months of full-time graduate-level studies (or full-time equivalent). Successful applicants for Master's-level funding will not receive funding past the end of their 24th month in Master's program.

Note: Applicants for the Rick Hansen "Man in Motion" Fellowship can be in any month of Master's study.

Doctoral students

Applicants must have completed, as of December 31, 2023:

  • between 0 and 36 months of full-time doctoral studies (or full-time equivalent). In cases where a student has transferred directly from a Master’s program into a doctoral program without receiving a Master’s degree, eligibility for doctoral funding will be counted from the effective date of transfer to the doctoral program. Successful applicants will not receive funding past the end of their 48th month in doctoral program.
  • between 0 and 48 months of full-time doctoral studies (or full-time equivalent) in cases where students proceeded directly from a Bachelor’s or equivalent program to their doctoral program. Successful applicants will not receive funding past the end of their 60th month in doctoral program.


Please note that all previous studies at the graduate level, regardless of institution and discipline, will be included in determining eligibility.  For example, a previous Master's degree at UBC or another institution would count towards the total Master's months of study.

Evaluation Criteria


Criteria Weighting for applicants for Master’s funding Weighting for applicants for doctoral funding
Academic excellence
  • Academic record
  • Scholarships and awards held
  • Duration of previous studies
50% 30%
Research ability or potential
  • Quality of contributions to research and development
  • 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
30% 50%
Communication, interpersonal and leadership abilities
  • 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
20% 20%


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 graduate program nomination deadline, as graduate programs must review students' applications well in advance of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies deadline.

Applicants must submit the following materials to their graduate program at UBC:

Important: Please refer to the application instructions for essential details on each application item noted above.

Nomination Procedures

Graduate programs should set their internal application deadline well in advance of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies deadline.  The deadline to submit nominations to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies is May 27, 2024 at 4:00 pm PT..

Award descriptions are listed in the Application Form - PART 2.

To nominate students, Graduate Programs are to:

  • Review received applications and determine nominees
  • Fill out the Excel nomination form:
    • Maximum number of nominees for each award is specified in the nomination sheet under the award name
    • For awards that specify "no maximum", programs can insert rows to add more nominees
    • For each nominee, copy the description of eligibility the nominee provided in their Application Form - PART 2 into the nomination form (if applicable, some of the awards do not have a text box for applicants to explain their eligibility)
    • [Note that ROWS in the nomination form can be resized; columns cannot be edited]
    • Save the nomination form as PROGRAM_SPRING_nomination_form.xlsx (e.g. MATH would save the form as MATH_SPRING_nomination_form.xlsx)
    • Important note: Please review the applicant’s eligibility for the specific awards they have selected (in their completed Application Form - PART 2) before considering nominating them for the specific award.  The Spring Graduate Awards competition tends to receive a significant number of nominations from applicants who have weak or minimal eligibility for the specific awards they have been nominated for.  For example, an applicant may indicate themselves as eligible for the #6364 Armauer-Hansen (research related to bacterial disease), but their research proposal indicates they are studying cancer.  Such cases will be removed from award consideration by our team before university-wide adjudication commences, but ideally they would not be nominated.
  • Save each nominee application file as PROGRAM_SPRING_LastName_FirstName.pdf (e.g. nomination file for student Jane Smith from MATH would be called MATH_SPRING_Smith_Jane.pdf).
  • A complete nominee application file will consist of:
    • Application Form - PART 1 (PART 2 should NOT be included; it should only be used to fill out the nomination form)
    • CCV
    • Transcripts
    • One form/letter of recommendation
    • See the “Application Procedures” section of this webpage for details
  • Upload the nomination form and all nominee files into your program's UBC Sharepoint folder (within the umbrella folder ‘Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies – Programs – Folder Structure”)(named “FACULTY – DEPT“; e.g., “ARTS – PSYC”).

A complete nomination package in Sharepoint from a graduate program would look like this:

  • Nomination Form: PROGRAM_SPRING_nomination_form.xlsx
  • Nominee application files: PROGRAM_SPRING_LastName_FirstName.pdf (one Spring Graduate Awards application PDF for each applicant you are nominating)
    • PROGRAM_SPRING_Smith_John

TIP: If you come across any "secured" PDF file submissions from your applicants (secured PDF files are locked and can't be combined with other PDF files), we have provided procedures on how to unlock that file type on this webpage.

Adjudication Procedures

The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will convene an adjudication committee comprising faculty members representing various disciplines.  

Results will be announced in mid-August.


Further Information

For further information, please contact graduate.awards@ubc.ca.


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