Graduate Student Contingency Bursary application

Graduate Student Contingency Bursary application (pdf)

Use this form to:

  • apply for a Graduate Student Contingency Bursary (previously known as the Millennium Graduate Bursary)

The purpose of this bursary is to provide financial assistance to eligible international graduate students at Waterloo who are experiencing extenuating circumstances – defined as events or situations that could not reasonably have been predicted or expected and were beyond the control of the student – and as a result, have unexpected financial need. Only educational and reasonable living expenses will be considered in the assessment.

Graduate Students who are Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada and require financial assistance must apply for a bursary through the Student Awards and Financial Aid Office.


Varies but will be restricted to a maximum based on the student’s situation.

Eligibility Requirements: 

Applicants must:

  • be international with a valid Canadian study permit
  • be a full time graduate student in good academic standing
  • normally be in term 4.0 or beyond of their academic program
  • show evidence of the extenuating circumstances that have occurred since their time of admission; students past their term limits (with extenuating circumstances) may also be considered
  • demonstrate their financial shortfall through the completion of the budget section of the application
  • provide written confirmation that they are seeking support elsewhere and identify how they are covering any short fall;  written confirmation should also include a financial plan for future terms

Maximum Number of Bursaries:

International students in a Master’s program (professional or non-professional) can receive a maximum of one bursary throughout their entire program.

International students in a Doctoral program can receive a maximum of two bursaries throughout their entire program.

Preference will be given to graduate students enrolled in research-based programs.

Application Deadlines: 

Fall term – September 15   

Winter term – January 15    

Spring term – May 15

Applications will not be accepted after the deadline. Where the advertised deadline falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the deadline date will be the following Monday.

Students may not submit an application until the start of the term in which they want to be considered.


Applicants will normally be notified of bursary decisions within one month of the deadline.