Financial need funding

We offer many funding opportunities to graduate students who demonstrate financial need. This funding includes:

Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)

OSAP provides various types of assistance based on financial need to eligible students. This assistance is intended to supplement, not to replace, the resources of students and their families. Although assistance is not based on academic standing, students are expected to make satisfactory progress in their studies.

Note: Students from provinces other than Ontario must apply for government student aid through their home provinces.

Detailed information including application forms and deadlines is available on the OSAP website or by visiting the Student Awards & Financial Aid Office website.

Graduate Student Bursary

Bursaries are available to full-time Waterloo graduate students experiencing short term financial need and are meant to financially assist with basic needs and educational expenses only.

Graduate Student Bursaries for graduate students who are Canadian or Permanent Residents of Canada and are administered by the Student Awards and Financial Aid (SAFA) office. Further information including the Graduate Student Bursary application can be found on the SAFA website.

Graduate Studies Parental Leave Bursary

The University of Waterloo will provide an eight-month birth and parental leave (includes adoption) bursary to eligible graduate students. The bursary, together with any other continuing support, is intended to maintain income at about 95% of the average level of income received by the student during the three previous academic terms, less tuition.  The maximum value of the bursary is $5,000 for the first term and $3,000 for the second term.   For further details or to apply see the Graduate Studies parental leave bursary guidelines on the Graduate Studies forms website.

Graduate Student Day Care Bursary application

Full-time graduate students may be eligible to receive funding to assist with day care expenses. Bursaries are awarded on the basis of financial need. Students interested in applying for this bursary must complete a Graduate Student Day Care Bursary application (Graduate Studies forms website) and submit it to the Graduate Studies Office.

Millennium Graduate Bursary

Millennium Graduate Bursaries are intended to provide short term financial assistance to eligible international students. To be considered, complete a Millennium Graduate Bursary application (Graduate Studies forms website) and submit it to the Graduate Studies Office.

Emergency loans

Interest-free emergency loans are available to full-time graduate students who are experiencing short-term financial difficulty. These loans are not meant to provide funding for arranging fees to become registered. Loans must be re-paid by the end of the term, and proof of an acceptable form of repayment must be provided.

To be considered for an emergency loan please complete the PDF form (found on the Student Awards & Financial Services website) and submit a hard copy to the Graduate Studies Office.

Waterloo need-based awards

Some of our awards at Waterloo are based partially or solely on demonstrated financial need. Many of these awards were established through generous contributions from private donors. In most cases, preference will be given to students who have applied for OSAP and applicants must be Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada and Ontario residents over the last 12 months. In order to be considered for these awards, carefully read the eligibility criteria and submit the appropriate application by the deadline provided.

Open to all:

Department/discipline specific:

AHS

ARTS

ENG

ENV

MATH