Graduate Award Competition

The Graduate Award Competition (GAC) encompasses a broad range of awards funded by donors and the University of Calgary.

At a glance


Between $700 and $36,000

Awards will be paid the following academic year with the majority starting in September




Competition opens November 1. Deadlines vary by program (BISI, EDER, PSYC, ect). Contact your Graduate Program Administrator.

Degree type

All students applying to, or enrolled in, a thesis-based graduate degree program are eligible.

Students in course-based and professional degree programs are NOT eligible

GAC successful offers are sent via email and will also be in the MyUofC student portal

Successful students can normally hold one scholarship awarded through the GAC in a given year and are always awarded the highest valued scholarship for which they are eligible.

    2023 results will be announced as follows:

    • Entrance - successful results March/April
    • Izaak Walton Killam - successful results March/April
    • Program Recommended Medicine - May/June
    • Open Doctoral - May to October
    • Special Awards - May to October
    • Alberta Innovates - September to December
    • Unsuccessful notices will not be sent, please check here to see if all results have been announced

    Timeline subject to change

    Preparing your application

    You are encouraged to apply for awards when you have submitted your admissions application and received your University of Calgary student number (UCID). You are not required to meet the eligibility requirements in the terms of reference of an award when you apply, but if successful, you must meet the eligibility requirements at the time the award is paid.

    Please ensure that you have completed the following two steps before submitting your application:

    Read the terms of reference

    Awards are based on merit. It is important to read and understand the award terms of reference listed on this page and/or on the agency, or donor website.

    Know your eligibility

    Read our guide to discover the polices and regulations that determines a student's award eligibility at the University of Calgary.

    Award Guide: Eligibility

    Terms of reference



      You must meet the eligibility criteria for each award for which you are applying.


      *The terms of reference for the Killam award, open doctoral awards, and special awards can be found on the Graduate Awards Database. 

      Awards Database

      Selection criteria and indicators

      To be eligible for the Killam and Open Doctoral categories students must have achieved a first-class average, as determined by the university issuing the transcripts, in the last two completed years of study (full-time equivalent). At the University of Calgary, a student must have achieved a grade point average of 3.5 or higher in the last 2 years of study. Each institution has their own definition of first-class average. The University of Calgary does not convert scales.

      Read more


      The Graduate Award Competition opens November 1

      1. Go to your Student Centre and click the link Apply for Awards tab on your home screen.
      2. Select the Graduate Award Competition Application.

      Only one application is required regardless of the number of awards you are applying for.

      Apply here


      References for admission may be used toward the Graduate Award Competition as long as they have been written within the last eleven months prior to the competition deadline.

      Attend a Workshop

      Set yourself up for success and attend one of our workshops.

      FGS Awards workshop

      GAC Workshop
      Nov 28, 2023 | 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm

      View a Recording of last year's workshop

      Participants should view the presentation in advance and come to the Q&A session with specific questions in mind.

      Alberta Innovates Workshop

      Times will be listed when a workshop is available.

      View the session

      One-on-one mentoring

      The Graduate Leaders Circle (GLC) is hosting scholarship cafes, dedicated one-on-one mentoring sessions for students applying for scholarships. Drop-in and scheduled sessions are available.

      If you have eligibility questions or you experience difficulties with the application, please contact the Faculty of Graduate Studies office (


      GLC scholarship cafes

      Times will be available once the next workshops are planned.


      GLC scholarship drop-ins

      GAC Drop In #1:
      Dec 11, 2023 | 10 am - 12:00 noon

      GAC Drop In #1:
      Jan 4, 2023 | 10 am - 11:30 am

      GAC Drop In #1:
      Jan 9, 2023 | 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm