Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship (Vanier CGS) program helps Canadian institutions attract highly qualified doctoral students from across the country and abroad. The Vanier CGS program considers three equally weighted selection criteria: Academic Excellence, Research Potential, and Leadership.

Value and Duration

Timeline and Deadlines

The Vanier CGS process is jointly handled by Faculty Associate Deans (Graduate) and SGPS. For information on the Vanier CGS competition, please visit the website.

  • Winter Term – SGPS call for qualified candidates
  • Summer Term - SGPS mentoring of recommended candidates
  • Late June – Annual launch of the Vanier CGS application in ResearchNET
  • August 27 – Deadline to submit official applications

A Vanier nomination does not automatically provide entry into the SSHRC/NSERC/CIHR doctoral competitions.  A Vanier candidate must apply separately to thge same agency's doctoral awards competition, if eligible to do so.

Invitation to Apply

A candidate must be invited to apply for the Vanier:

  • An interested student may approach their Graduate Chair to discuss their possible recommendation for the Vanier
  • The Graduate Chair recommends a qualified student to the Faculty's Vanier Working Group.


  • Eligibility conditions are outlined in detail on the Vanier website here


  • How to Apply 
  • Online Application *Note: The Research Institution Deadline will only appear once the applicant selects the 'Canadian University Proposed for Doctoral Study' using the search option in the 'Project Details' subtask on the 'Enter Proposal Information' task. 
  • NEW! Applicants are now required to submit the Doctoral Studies Timeline form to SGPS with their official transcripts.
  • NEW! Applicants must systematically examine how differences in identity factors (such as sex, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability) affect the outcomes of research and the impact of research findings, and take the Sex and Gender-based Analysis Plus (SGBA+) principles into account in their proposed research
  • Referee Assessments (4 assessments are required from 2 academic referees and from 2 leadership referees)
  • Important Reminders when Requesting Assessments:
    • Academic referees complete their assessments online. Leadership referees each complete their assessments in a letter on their official letterhead, ink-signed, converted to PDF and relayed to the candidate who attaches each letter to their application.
    • Candidates must not complete the 'Identify Academic Referees' task before completing the 'Enter Proposal Information' task. See *Note above.
    • It is the responsibility of the applicant to follow up with all of their referees in a timely manner to ensure they are aware of the Research Institution Deadline for candidates and the earlier Academic Referee Assessment completion deadline.
    • Academic Referees face an automatic earlier deadline that is at least 48 hours ahead of the candidate's deadline.
    • Candidates will not be able to submit their applications until all tasks, including the Academic Referee Assessment tasks, are complete and all required documents have been attached.


The agency indicates that the release of funding decisions will take place on March 31st. Nominated applicants are notified individually of their results via ResearchNet. Shortly after, each university receives its own results via the Tri-Agency Secure Site. SGPS updates each nominated candidate’s status in Student Center which prompts individual notifications to be sent to them.

The Vanier-Banting Program, similar to the other Tri-Agency scholarship programs, implements a ban on any form of public announcement until the federal government makes the annual public funding announcement. A press release normally takes place in the late summer/early fall.

Access to Results

Graduate Chairs and Deans

  • Access GradNet using Western personal computer account information
  • Under the Launch Menu, select External Scholarships
  • For Vanier, select the agency-specific competition (CIHRV, NSERCV or SSHRCV), the Aid Year (2021 for results that will be released in April 2020), and the status (Awarded, Not Awarded or Waitlisted)

External Scholarship Coordinators

  • Access Student Center
  • Select Financial Aid > Awards > External Funding > External Assessment
  • Select the criteria to view the desired competition results (i.e. Competition, Aid Year, Cohort)
  • Select “Populate Students”

Holding the Award at Western

Acceptance and Activation

  • Accept the offer of award from the agency following the instructions provided in the letter of offer, and then activate it for payment by completing the required agency forms.
  • Initiate the payment process at Western by following these steps:
    • Access the Student Center
    • Select ‘Self Service’ from the main menu, then 'Campus Finances'
    • Select ‘My External Scholarships’ and follow the activation steps for the Vanier CGS
    • Choose the start date that matches the date stipulated by the agency in the offer

Method of Payment

  • At Western University the annual value of an award is divided into three equal installments and each is pre-paid to the award holder’s Student Center account at the start of every term (September, January and May).

Terms and Conditions

  • The Tri-Agencies (CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC) have harmonized their post-award policies, where possible, for research training programs and have incorporated these policies into a harmonized Tri-Agency Research Training Award Holder's Guide. These policies became effective September 1, 2016 and the Guide is available on NSERC's website. The Guide applies to Tri-Agency research training awards such as Vanier CGS, NSERC PGSD/CGSD, SSHRC DF/CGSD, CIHR CGSD and all CGSM. It contains all the forms that training award holders and the University need to facilitate post-award activities allowed by the Tri-Agencies.
  • Access and review your Tri-Agency Research Training Award Holder's Guide and comply with the regulations governing use of the award
  • Complete an annual SGPS Progress Report Form
    • Submit the form by the deadline specified by SGPS in the annual notification email
    • Annual deadlines will vary for each Vanier Scholar depending on the anniversary of the award start date, but will annually fall in either August, December, or April
    • A Progress Report can be submitted no earlier than 60 days prior to the anniversary date
    • Failure to submit the annual Progress Report will result in the suspension of further payments