Funding for Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents

All our students are automatically entitled to a cost of living stipend from their supervisor. We have a minimum stipend of $32,000 per annum. You can also apply for external scholarships. These awards can replace or supplement any funding provided by your supervisor.

The awards listed below are the main source of funding for Canadian and Permanent Residents. In addition the Canadian Blood Service, the Centre for Blood Research, the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute and the Canadian Diabetes Foundation all fund research in our supervisor’s areas of interest. The Faculty of Graduate Studies also maintains a comprehensive list of upcoming funding competitions.

Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR)
Named after Canadian Nobel Laureate and former department member Dr Michael Smith, this is a provincially funded agency for the Health Sciences. Only students in BC universities can apply for these awards. Historically our students have been very successful in this competition. It is unique as it can be held (at a reduced level) in conjunction with another scholarship. The agency also provides an additional $5,000 research allowance.
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The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)
Also known as NSERC this is a federally funded award agency and it provides most of the scholarships held by our students. Award levels range from $17,500 per year to $35,000 per year for the top ranked master and doctoral students. Successful applications are adjudicated over three levels: the department, university, and national levels.
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The Canadian Institute for Health Research (CIHR)
Also known as CIHR this is the second federally funded scholarship. Collectively NSERC, CIHR, and SSHRC (social sciences) are known as the Tri-agencies. Although more NSERC opportunities are available, several of our students hold either an NSERC or CIHR award. CIHR awards start off at $17,500 for masters students and go up to $35,000 for the strongest doctoral recipients.
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NSERC and CIHR’s are harmonized.  PhD level competition opens in August with an early September deadline, and MSc level competition opens late October with and usually a December 1st deadline.

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships
Valued at $50,000 per year the Vanier Program aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students. Awards can be held for two or three years and the competition is open to both domestic and international students. The Vaniers are administered by the three federal funding agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).
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Affiliated Fellowships (AF)
This is UBC’s graduate funding. This is an umbrella term for a collection of awards which are supported by government and university funds as well as private donors. Funding values range from $175 per year up to $30,000 per year with a $2,000 research allowance if you win a Killam Award. Anyone who applies for a NSERC masters/doctoral or a CIHR masters award is automatically considered for this fellowship. International students, who do not qualify to apply for NSERC and CIHR will fill in an Affiliated Fellowship application form, if they wish to be considered for funding.
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BC Graduate Scholarship (BCGS), #6768

The province of British Columbia has funded BC Graduate Scholarships (BCGS) in any field of study, with emphasis on research in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, and support for Indigenous students. We have one scholarships of $15,000/year to be awarded to an incoming graduate student starting September 2022.

BCGS recipients must meet the following eligibility criteria:
• Registered as a full-time student in a UBC graduate program throughout the funding period
• Canadian citizens and Permanent Residents

Teaching Assistant
Each year we hire graduate students to help our lecturers teach our undergraduate courses. These posts are open to all admitted students and are advertised via the careers section on the department website and by email. Posts are usually advertised during the spring and summer for the following academic year. We also hire students on an adhoc basis to provide extra help during exam periods.

UBC Faculty of Medicine
The Faculty of Medicine has a number of funding opportunities, which are supported by private donors. Awards are generally based around particular research areas and are worth up to $20,000 per year.
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The SH Zbarsky Scholarship, #470
This is a departmental award which was created in honour of Dr Sidney Zbarsky, one of our founding members. When he retired his friends and colleagues generously donated enough money to create an annual prize. The award value this year is $3,500. The  award  is given to a third year doctoral candidate who gives the best presentation in the BIOC 530 seminar class, as voted on by their fellow students.

Marianne Huyer Memorial Award, #4855
This is another yearly departmental award which was endowed in memory of Marianne Huyer by Dr. Michael Smith. Marianne was a PhD student in his lab who was tragically killed in a traffic accident in 1996. This $1,450 prize is given to the biochemistry student who submits the best PhD thesis. Nominations are made the thesis supervisors and the graduate committee decides on an overall winner.

Biochemistry PhD Travel Award
We offer up to 7 awards of $500 each for grads and postdocs to help pay expenses incurred for presenting at conferences. Competition will be announced in October with a November application deadline.

David Hoar and Noreen Rudd Scholarship in Biochemistry, #4496

The David Hoar and Noreen Rudd Scholarship is to recognize trainees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UBC. Scholarships totalling $2,000 have been made available through an endowment established by David Hoar (BSc 1966, PhD) and Noreen Rudd (MD 1965) for outstanding undergraduate and graduate First Nations, Inuit and Metis students of Canada in the Department of Biochemistry. Preference will be given to students from areas in British Columbia outside of the Lower Mainland and Greater Victoria. David is a geneticist and molecular biologist. He served on the Board of Directors and the Vancouver Aquarium. In 1988, he became the first person to testify in a Canadian court about DNA evidence. Noreen is a pediatrician and medical geneticist. She played a key role in the development of prenatal testing in Canada, and was a founding member of the Canadian College of Medical Geneticists. The scholarships are made on the recommendation of the Department of Biochemistry, and in the case of a graduate student, in consultation with the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

PhD, Masters and undergraduate students in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology are all encouraged to apply for the David Hoar and Noreen Rudd Scholarship. To apply, send your CV, (2 page maximum) and a summary describing your connection to your First Nation, Inuit or Metis community, (250 words maximum) to New extended deadline is November 1, 2024 at 5 pm PST. Please include your student number in your CV.  If a suitable candidate is not identified, no candidate will be nominated for the award.  For more information, please contact Dr. Thibault Mayor,