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Study abroad : Student Finances

Bursaries for Canadian students studying abroad

A breakdown of bursaries available for Canadian students studying abroad

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Studying abroad can be an extremely expensive ambition. However, while some of you may find the prospect of funding this impossible, there is help available. If you are from a low-income household or get good grades, it is likely that you may be able to receive a bursary. There is a huge amount of financial aid on offer all over the world, so we have given you a breakdown of where to start.


What is a bursary?

A bursary is a sum of money awarded to a student, usually from a lower-income household, with the purpose of supporting them through their studies. Bursaries do not need to be paid back and often have strict or specific eligibility criteria. Another form of non-repayable funding is a scholarship. While bursaries and scholarships are not that different in that they are sums of money awarded to students which don’t need paying back, scholarships tend to be awarded based on academic excellence, not taking into account household income.


Am I eligible for one?

Individual bursaries and scholarships have different eligibility requirements, depending on the organisation. You will need to check the details of each individual bursary or scholarship to find out whether you are suitable. Generally though, if you are a high-achiever or from a low-income household, it is likely that there will be some help available.


What bursaries are available?

University scholarships

Depending on where it is you plan to study, there are different options of bursaries available from the universities themselves.  

For instance, if you have been offered a place at Cambridge University, you may be eligible for the Blyth Cambridge Trust Scholarship for applicants from Canada. This scholarship is available to students of any subject, aside from Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, and covers the cost of your tuition fees, as well as maintenance and travel costs for each year of your course. While this sounds extremely generous, such scholarships are (naturally) highly sought after and so depend on academic excellence and satisfactory examination performance throughout your course. More information on this scholarship can be found here.


In Australia, there are also bursaries and scholarships available for international students. For instance, students wanting to study at the University of Sydney can apply to the Sydney Achievers International Scholarship. This is awarded to high-achievers and generally awards $10,000 per student per year. More information on this can be found here.


For those of you seeking higher education in the US, you can find a list of scholarships offered by American universities for international students, such as Amherst College’s bursary for international students with financial need, and Colby-Sawyer’s merit-based scholarships of up to $24,000 per year.


Such funding must be applied for directly through the institution, and these are not the only countries offering such financial aid - bursaries are available all over the world. In order to find out whether your chosen institution offers merit or need-based funding in the form of bursaries or scholarships, you will need to contact them directly.


Independently-funded bursaries and scholarships

Institutions are not the only way to get such funding – there are numerous independent bodies offering privately-funded bursaries and scholarships to international students.


Fulbright Scholarships are offered to students from Canada wanting to study in the US and are awarded for academic excellence. More information on these can be found here.


Additionally, the Canadian Bureau for International Education lists a whole range of bursaries available to Canadian students looking to study in Brazil, China, Africa, Mexico, South Korea, India and New Zealand. Here, you can view the full list.


Now that you know what help is available, why don’t you see if you are eligible and think about applying?

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