The information contained on this web page pertains to the 2021 McCall MacBain Scholarships and includes the steps required for applicants seeking institutional endorsement through the University of Waterloo.

Scholarship overview

Announced in 2019, the McCall MacBain Scholarships at McGill University are Canada’s first comprehensive, leadership-driven scholarships for master’s and professional degree students.

The McCall MacBain Scholarship covers:

  • Tuition and fees for an eligible master’s or professional program
  • A living stipend of $2,000 per month during academic terms
  • A comprehensive enrichment program including mentorship, interdisciplinary learning, and access to a global community.

For the 2021 competition, 20 McCall MacBain Scholarships are available for students to begin their studies at McGill University in the fall of 2021.

Regional and finalist awards will also be offered to promising candidates throughout the selection process:

  • Up to 28 one-time regional entrance awards valued at $5,000 will be available for graduate study at any Canadian public university.
  • Up to 30 one-time finalist entrance awards valued at $10,000 will be available for graduate study at McGill University.

Concurrent support

McCall MacBain Scholars may accept up to $10,000 per year in additional merit-based funding. There is no limit to additional funding which McCall MacBain Scholars may accept based on financial need.

Evaluation criteria

McCall MacBain Scholars will have a track record of community engagement, informed by a sense of duty, empathy, intellectual curiosity, grit, and a willingness to take risks. They aim to create meaningful and lasting change, while improving the lives of others.

The selection committee will seek applicants with:

  • Exceptional character
  • Community engagement
  • Leadership potential
  • Entrepreneurial spirit
  • Academic strength and intellectual curiosity

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must:

  • hold Canadian citizenship, permanent residency, or refugee status in Canada
  • have a bachelor’s degree, or be on track to graduate with one, by August 2021
  • plan to apply for and begin an eligible full-time master's or professional program at McGill University commencing in fall 2021*:
    • Eligible master’s programs
      • MA (Arts), MArch (Architecture), MATL (Arts in Teaching and Learning), MBA (Business Administration), MEng (Engineering), MISt (Information Studies), MM (Management), MMus (Music), MPP (Public Policy), MSc (Science), MScA (Science, Applied), MScAPT (Science, Applied in Physical Therapy), MScAOT (Science, Applied in Occupational Therapy), MSW (Social Work), MUP (Urban Planning), LLM (Law), STM (Sacred Theology
    • Second-entry undergraduate professional programs
      •  BCL/JD (Law), DMD (Dentistry), MDCM (Medicine)

*Programs at McGill University with summer 2021 admission only, such as the MATL and MM, are considered acceptable.

Application process

1. Create application in online portal

  • Visit the McCall MacBain website to view the online application portal and initiate an application. We encourage applicants to create an application early on to avoid any unforeseeable issues.

2. Select and contact two referees

  • Applicants must select two referees to write letters of recommendation. The following are required:
    • One academic reference*
    • One community reference
  • Applicants must communicate submission instructions and deadline to their referees. Referees must submit their letters through the McCall MacBain online application portal by the application deadline of September 24, 2020.

*For business programs (e.g. MBA, MM), a professional reference can be submitted in lieu of an academic reference.

3. Order transcripts

*provided transcripts were declared and submitted as part of the Waterloo admission application

4. Submit application materials

  • Applicants must submit their application materials through the McCall MacBain online application portal by the application deadline of September 24, 2020. Applicants must click "finalize" in the application portal in order to submit.
  • The comprehensive online application is comprised of the following:
    • Several short essays
    • One-page resume/CCV
    • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions, including Waterloo
    • 2 reference letters

Institutional endorsement

All current students and alumni who graduated (or expect to do so) in 2019 or later from Canadian public universities must earn an endorsement from their current/most recent institution. Applicants seeking endorsement through the University of Waterloo must finalize and submit their application through the McCall MacBain online application portal by September 24, 2020.

Waterloo alumni who graduated in 2018 or earlier do not need institutional endorsement and should submit an application directly to the McCall MacBain scholarship selection committee via the online application portal

All applicants will receive notification regarding whether they were selected for endorsement by the University of Waterloo within two weeks of the application deadline.


June 15, 2020 Application portal opens
September 17, 2020 @ 4:00 PM Transcript request form deadline
September 24, 2020 Application deadline
October 7, 2020 Deadline for institutions to endorse applications
November 21, 2020 Regional interviews (Toronto)
January 15-17, 2021 Final interviews in Montreal
February - September 2021 (Varying timeline: Confirmation of acceptance to an eligible program at McGill)
September 2021 Scholars arrive on campus at McGill

Please note that the McCall MacBain Scholarship offer is conditional upon Summer / Fall 2021 admission to an eligible master’s or professional degree program at McGill University. Students must apply separately to McGill for admission. In most cases, they will apply to McGill after applying for the McCall MacBain Scholarships, but before final interviews in January 2021.

Helpful resources

Questions about the McCall MacBain scholarship application process can be emailed to the Co-ordinator, Graduate Financial Aid and Awards in Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA).

Last updated July 7, 2020