Entrance bursaries for Ontario students

What is a bursary?

A bursary is money given to a student based on financial need rather than on academic achievement. You don't need to pay back any money you're awarded as a bursary.

Bursaries for Ontario residents

Approximately 1,000 first-year Waterloo students who are Ontario residents with financial need and who are starting university or college for the first time may receive a Waterloo entrance bursary.


Bursaries range from $1,000 to $5,000.

How to apply

  1. Starting February 1, log in to Quest. Under the Finances menu, click the link to the Entrance Bursary Application.
  2. Complete the quick eligibility check (You must be an Ontario resident as defined by OSAP.)
  3. Fill in all fields on the application. You will need income and tax information for the previous year from your parents, guardians, or spouse.
  4. Click Agree to submit your application.


The application deadline is April 15. Bursaries will be awarded in mid-May.

Additional bursaries

Once you're in first year, there are additional bursaries you can apply for, including bursaries for students with disabilities, Indigenous students, students from outside Ontario, and students whose parents didn't attend college or university.

Learn more about bursaries on Waterloo's Student Awards and Financial Aid website.

What's the difference between a scholarship and a bursary?

A scholarship is awarded based on your academic, extracurricular, or personal achievement while a bursary is normally awarded based on financial need. A bursary is similar to a scholarship in that you're not expected to repay it.