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Quantum Cryptography School for Young Students

Students listening to a lecture

The University of Waterloo is continuing to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and is implementing proactive measures to ensure the safety and well-being of our community members. They will continue to monitor the situation and we will post updates on this website regarding any necessary programming changes that may be required due to the pandemic.


Applications for QCSYS 2020 are now closed. Fill in our online form if you want to be contacted when the 2021 application opens.

The Quantum Cryptography School for Young Students (QCSYS) is a unique, nine-day enrichment program for students hosted by the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo. QCSYS will run August 6-14, 2020 with students arriving August 5 and departing August 15.

The school offers an interesting blend of lectures, hands-on experiments and group work focused on quantum cryptography — a cutting-edge field that utilizes the fascinating laws of quantum mechanics to develop unbreakable encryption that protects communication.

Students get a first-hand look into the physics and mathematics of quantum mechanics, cryptography and how they merge into one of the most exciting topics in contemporary science — quantum cryptography. Participants meet and collaborate with some of the most renowned researchers the field has to offer. Daily social activities encourage relationship building between participants.

There is a registration fee of $250 CAD due upon acceptance into the program. Students are responsible to book and pay for their travel to and from Waterloo. Bursaries are available to help cover the costs of registration and travel. All students, including those from the Waterloo region, stay in a university residence with QCSYS chaperones. The program has space for 44 participants.

QCSYS is for students who are:

  • In grades 11 or 12 (secondary V and CÉGEP in Québec) exceptional grade 10 students may be accepted space permitting
  • Age 15 years and older
  • Enrolled in or have completed grade 11 mathematics or higher (grade 11 physics is recommended but not mandatory)
  • Fluent in English

Please refer to our FAQs page if you have any questions. Email if you require additional information.

Find out more about QCSYS

Download the Mathematics of Quantum Mechanics

Teachers, find out more about QCSYS