Geometric circles

How to apply?

1. Applicant contacts a proposed University of Waterloo faculty member to be a supervisor

The first component of the application includes obtaining endorsement from a University of Waterloo faculty member. Applicants are encouraged to visit the University of Waterloo faculty/departments/school pages, which provides a list of faculty members and their respective research areas. Applicants should consider the proposed faculty member’s research and the alignment with their own research expertise and background prior to contacting the prospective faculty member.

When contacting a Waterloo faculty member to obtain endorsement for the AMTD Fellowship, applicants are encouraged to include a link to this AMTD web page to provide contextual details of the opportunity. Applicants are encouraged to share their up-to-date curriculum vitae and a proposed outline of research that can be accomplished as part of the AMTD Fellowship with the Waterloo faculty member.

Note: the proposed supervisor must have ADDS status (Approved Doctoral Dissertation Supervisor Status) at the time of the scholar's appointment.

2. University of Waterloo faculty member submits an endorsement form; GSPA contacts applicant

Once a partnership has been arranged between a proposed scholar (applicant) and a University of Waterloo faculty member, the proposed supervisor* who is in support of the candidate’s application will complete and submit the AMTD Waterloo supervisor endorsement form, normally at least three weeks prior to the application deadline.

Following the receipt of the form, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA) staff will send an email to the applicant inviting them to complete the next steps in the application process (as below).

*Although there is no limit as to how many applicants a proposed supervisor can endorse, given the competitive nature of this opportunity, and the expectations there will be on the supervisor to provide the strongest possible support of the applicant, faculty members are encouraged to be very selective in who and how many they endorse.

3. Applicant contacts referees to provide reference letter

The AMTD Fellowship application requires two reference letters, one of which must be from a referee who is at arm’s length from the applicant.

The arm’s length referee should be an expert in the field of the proposed research and should be able to assess the research proposal and academic CV in that capacity. Examples of an arm’s length referee include but are not limited to, the external examiner from the applicant’s doctoral defence or a specialist that the applicant met at a conference. It is not necessary for the applicant to have met the arm’s length referee. The arm’s length referee cannot be someone with whom the applicant or proposed supervisor have had previous associations that could be perceived as biasing an assessment. Examples of those who would not qualify as an arm’s length referee would include:

  • A relative, friend, or anyone else with whom the applicant has a personal relationship;
  • Affiliated with the applicant’s current and/or proposed institution(s);
  • Professionally affiliated with the applicant as a result of but not limited to:
    • Being the applicant’s supervisor or trainee,
    • Collaborating, publishing or sharing funding with the applicant or proposed supervisor.

The proposed supervisor may be able to assist the applicant in identifying a colleague to write the arm’s length reference letter.

The second referee must be either the applicant’s doctoral research supervisor, committee member, or the internal/external reviewer. The proposed postdoctoral supervisor may only provide a reference if they’ve supervised the candidate in the past (e.g., as their PhD supervisor).

Referees must be able to provide relevant evidence, perspectives and insight to support the review of the application. The assessments contribute to a major part of the evaluation of the application and its potential success. It is the applicant’s responsibility to provide the referees with the information they require in order to complete an informed and strong assessment.

Reference letters must address the following criteria:

  • Applicant’s research excellence and demonstrated leadership in the research domain;
  • Merit of the applicant’s proposed research program;

Referees will be required to send a pdf copy of their letter (signed and on letterhead) that addresses the above criteria, to Heidi Mussar by 9:00 am EST on November 18, 2021. This is required to conduct the adjudication of applications.

4. Applicant completes and submits an online AMTD Fellowship application

Interested applicants, who have received an invitation to apply from GSPA (step 2 above), must complete the online application form and submit it electronically by 9:00 am EST on November 18, 2021.

The application will require applicants to do the following:

  • upload an up-to-date copy of their academic curriculum vitae (CV); applicants are encouraged (but not required) to complete a CCV using the Canadian Common CV (CCV) website
  • upload a research statement* that has been reviewed and supported by the proposed supervisor that:
    • articulates the expected research program to be conducted with sufficient clarity that the adjudicating committee may assess the feasibility and significance of the work (where applicable, identify appropriate institutional areas of strength);
    • describes the outreach and dissemination plans that will be undertaken to ensure the appropriate impact is obtained;
    • proposes novel academic engagements for existing University of Waterloo graduate (and potentially undergraduate) students to be implemented through the scholar’s program;
    • identifies expected resources (broadly defined) that will be necessary;
    • identifies how their proposed project fits with one of the identified areas of concentration, if appropriate.
  • upload a special circumstances statement, if applicable, with regards to the window of eligibility criterion; it is essential that the applicant provide specific dates for delays and/or interruptions, including the exact number of months or days of these interruptions.
  • obtain and upload a copy of the PhD degree/diploma or a letter from the institution from where they completed (or intend to complete) their PhD degree requirements that confirms the date (or expected date) of fulfilment of all degree requirements.
  • identify two referees (and have completed step 3 of the application process).
  • applicants who are a Canadian Citizen or a Permanent Resident of Canada, who self-identify as Indigenous or Black must provide a written attestation that they identify as belonging to the respective community, including an explanation how their lived experiences demonstrate their inclusion in one of these communities. Additionally, if belonging to an Indigenous community, applicants must provide heritage background through written documentation as applicable.
    • This statement and relevant documentation will be reviewed by members of the identified University of Waterloo community (Indigenous or Black) for inclusion in the evaluation of the Indigenous and Black applicants.

* Research statement details:

  • Statement can be a maximum of 5 pages (excluding references) with 11-point font, single-spaced, 1” margins on all sides.

What is the selection process?

The selection committee is made up of:

  • Associate Vice-President, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (Chair)
  • Vice-President, Research and International (or delegate)
  • Vice-President, Advancement (or delegate)
  • Representative from the Black Faculty Collective
  • Representative from University of Waterloo’s Indigenous community
  • At least one Faculty Dean (or delegate)
  • A Faculty member who serves as the lead to a University Institute or Centre, invited by the Chair

All eligible applications received will be evaluated by an adjudication committee that will be well prepared – through purposeful composition and training of members – to adjudicate submissions through lenses of diverse lived experiences.

  • Applications from scholars who have self-identified as Black or Indigenous will first be considered among a candidate pool that will be limited to those who have included this self-identification.
  • The University acknowledges that best practices in evaluating inclusion in Black or Indigenous communities are constantly evolving. In its efforts to ensure that the Fellowship program is meeting its, the University’s and societal goals, the University commits to revisiting and updating annually its criteria and processes such that:
    • Eligibility criteria remain consistent with and guided by all legal requirements;
    • Eligibility considerations are primarily informed by the lived experiences of the scholars;
    • Eligibility assessments are made consistent with currently identified best practices;
    • Those applicants who warrant inclusion in the pool have the highest likelihood of inclusion;
    • Those applicants who do not warrant inclusion in the pool have a satisfactory likelihood of being excluded.
    • Annually, the best application from the pool of Black or Indigenous scholars, who meets the selection criteria, will be awarded an AMTD Fellowship.
    • The remaining applicants from the Black and Indigenous pool who meet the selection criteria, will be considered as part of the general pool.

A shortlist of candidates will be identified by December 2021. The shortlisted scholars may be invited to participate in an interview either on campus or remotely with the committee, with decisions and offers being made by mid-February 2022. Scholars will have until March 2022 to accept the position. The University of Waterloo is eager to host scholars as early as July 1 and no later than September 30, 2022.