Graduate Studentships and Fellowships

Leveraged Funds

Faculty are able to take advantage of School of Graduate Studies and Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) funds to leverage their grant funds to support stipends for their graduate students. The purpose of this opportunity is to allocate money from the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) (School of Graduate Studies and/or Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) funds) in such a way that up to three students can be supported for an individual faculty member. The intention is to spread the financial support across the Faculty to as many students as possible. This opportunity is referred to as the “Three Student Rule”.
Supervisors will normally be eligible to receive leveraged dollars, from the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) (School of Graduate Studies and/or the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) funds). “Leveraged funds” is understood to mean leverage between School of Graduate Studies / the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) funds and the supervisor. The guidelines for the School of Graduate Studies allocation are those described in the document: “Guidelines for Awarding of SGS Fellowships to Graduate Students”.
Funds from the School of Graduate Studies baseline are only available for two years for MSc and four years for PhD and students must have a minimum average of 75%.

Application Process

  1. Supervisors are required to submit an email to the Administrative Specialist (, in the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine), the names of students they wish to have funded through the leveraged fund opportunity. Ideally, this request would be made two-three months prior to the student entering the program.
  2. Students must meet the eligibility criteria for acceptance into the Graduate Program as outlined in the University Calendar.
  3. Students must have full-time status at the time of accepting the studentship.
  4. The objective is to provide support for as many students as possible. Normally the distribution of funds will be determined by the Associate Dean - Graduate Studies (Medicine); however, in the case where there are limited funds available input will be sought from the program coordinators.

Supervisors with students holding Competitive Awards

  1. Supervisors with students that have external awards will still be eligible for the School of Graduate Studies/the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) leveraged funding under the Three-Student Rule for other students under their supervision. For example, if a faculty member has two students who are on external funding, that faculty member would be eligible for funding three additional students under the Three-Student Rule. 
  2. The award must be (i) for high academic achievement and (ii) based on a competitive process. These would include the Dean’s Fellowship, Hatcher Award, Aldrich Award and awards provided by agencies external to the University such as (but not limited to) Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR), Heart and Stroke Foundation, Kidney Foundation, Liver Foundation, etc.
  3. The Hatcher and Aldrich awards are University awards, external to the Faculty of Medicine, but are limited to one year with a maximum of one year renewal. Funding will be guaranteed (from the School of Graduate Studies/the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine) for these students for the first two years of the MSc and the first four years of the PhD as outlined above under fellowship. This guide will apply to any such funding award. 


  1. Normally leveraged funds will be available for up to two years for an MSc student and up to four years for a PhD student.
  2. Students may be eligible for up to one semester extension (MSc students) or two semester extension (PhD students) from the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine), pending availability of funds. Supervisors must request these funds, in writing, prior to the end of the last semester of eligible funding. To be eligible for extension students need to be in good standing in the program, with a clear indication of program completion.

“Three-Student Rule” for Leveraged Funds

Leveraged funds are available for up to $18,000 for three students, up to $12,000 for two students and up to $6,000 for one student. The required minimum for full-time graduate students will remain $12,000 although faculty may provide more financial support to provide higher stipends.

Deans’ Fellowship 

The Dean’s Fellowship is a competitive award based on academic excellence. There are several Dean’s Fellowships awarded annually in the Faculty of Medicine depending on the availability of funds. A competition is held in the spring for students entering in September.  A student may be entered in only one fellowship competition during their program of study.
The Dean’s Fellowship award at the MSc level is valued at $18,000 and at the PhD level is valued at $20,000.

Information for Supervisors and Students

The Dean's Fellowship Award recognizes academic excellence and is awarded to Masters and Doctoral students by the Dean of Medicine on the recommendation of the Associate Dean - Graduate Studies (Medicine).
To apply for the Dean's Fellowship Award, a student or their supervisor is required to submit the following:

  1. A letter requesting to be considered for a Dean's Fellowship
  2. A letter of reference from his/her supervisor
  3. A C.V. which includes a list of academic accomplishments

A. For new students (i.e. entering students or students that transferred to a PhD program)

The applicant/student must have a complete file in the Office of Research and Graduate Studies (Medicine).  A "complete file" means - a completed web application for admission to graduate studies, two (2) letters of appraisal, and a letter of support from a potential supervisor willing to sponsor the student.  Refer to the Dean's Fellowship Guidelines for complete eligibility criteria.
Students are expected to apply for studentships external to the Faculty of Medicine (e.g., Tri-Council agency or non-governmental agencies).  In addition, these students are encouraged to apply for internal awards and fellowships offered through the School of Graduate Studies ( of Graduate Studies/current/scholarships/).

B. For current Graduate Students

Refer to the Dean's Fellowship Guidelines for complete eligibility criteria. The application at the time of entrance into the graduate programme will be used for the Dean's Fellowship Competition. Leveraged Fund Studentships

Description & Criteria:

  • The number of Dean’s Fellowships awarded is dependent upon the quality of candidates as well as the availability of funds.  Awards are available in the amount of $18,000 per annum for two years for candidates entering the MSc programme and $20,000 per annum for four years for those entering the PhD programme.  The length of time one may hold the award will be less for current students; one year for current MSc students and up to a maximum of 3 years for current PhD students. 
  • Students who transfer from the MSc to the PhD programme must re-apply and compete for the Dean’s Fellowship at the PhD level.  If successful, fellowship funding will not be carried beyond year 5 of the initial start of the programme.
  • Students who accept a Dean’s Fellowship may apply to other academic programmes (e.g., medical school) only after completing the 1st year of their MSc or 3rd year of their PhD graduate programme.
  • A student awarded a Dean’s Fellowship is expected to apply for an external award at least once during his or her programme of study.  Continuation of the Dean’s Fellowship is contingent upon verification of an application for external funds.
  • Canadian and International students are ranked equally based on grades converted using the World Education Services (WES) International Grade Conversion Guide for Higher Education criteria.


  1. Entering students must have a complete file in the Research and Graduate Studies Office.  A “complete file” means – a completed graduate web application for admission to graduate studies; two (2) letters of appraisal; and a letter of support from a potential supervisor.  Faculty members who are aware of individuals that are interested in graduate studies but have not yet applied should advise them to submit their application immediately.
  2. A student may apply for the Dean’s Fellowship only once unless transferring from the MSc to the PhD programme.  Recipients of the Dean’s Fellowship who transfer from an MSc to a PhD programme must re-apply upon successful transfer.
  3. The Dean’s Fellowship is primarily based on academic excellence in the student’s last 20 courses (or one-semester equivalents), with other accomplishments being considered (i.e. publications, presentations, scholarships).  Ranking for grades for new MSc applicants will be based on undergraduate grades; ranking for current MSc and PhD applicants will include a combination of the last 20 graduate and undergraduate grades (or one-semester equivalents).
  4. First-class standing (an ‘A’ average; 80% or better) is required.
  5. In order receive or retain the Dean’s Fellowship award, a student must: register as a full-time student in an MSc or PhD programme in the Faculty of Medicine at the time of receiving the award; maintain full-time status; be in good standing in the programme; maintain an 80% average in course work; and have satisfactory supervisory committee reports throughout his or her programme (filed annually in the Office of Research & Graduate Studies). 

Guidelines for the Awarding of SGS Fellowships and Graduate Student Support

 1. General principles

  1. The School of Graduate Studies baseline funds for the awarding of SGS Fellowships will be allocated to academic units by the Dean of Graduate Studies on a fiscal-year (April 1- March 31) basis for the support of their graduate students according to the “Guidelines for Allocation of Academic Unit Baselines”.
  2. It is recommended that academic units develop and make known program level funding norms. While the School of Graduate Studies does not specify floor funding, academic units are encouraged to design funding norms that combine SGS Fellowship support with other sources (Graduate Assistantship ), external or internal scholarship, supervisor’s grant or contract support, etc.) in order to achieve financial packages that best reflect estimated costs of living.
  3. Recommendations for awarding SGS Fellowships must be forwarded to the School of Graduate Studies for approval and disbursement according to the criteria and procedures below.

2. Student Eligibility Criteria

  1. Students must normally have and maintain an overall MUN, or equivalent, average of 75% and be registered as full-time in a baseline supported master’s or doctoral program in order to receive a SGS Fellowship.
  2. Academic standard
  • On admission, students must normally have an overall MUN, or equivalent, average of 75% determined by using either the last 20 attempted courses for which grades are available, or by using all courses attempted for which grades are available excluding those in the first year of an undergraduate program. Attempted post baccalaureate courses for which grades are available are included in both calculations.
  • In-program students must normally have successfully completed at least one full semester and achieved a mark of at least 75% in each program course attempted or an overall average of at least 80% for all program courses attempted (minimum of two program courses), or where one course or less is required, evidence of academic standing acceptable to the Dean.
  • Time in program
    • ​Master's students must be within the first 12 program-months of a one-year program, excluding any leave period.
    • Master's students must be within the first 24 program-months for other than one-year programs, excluding any leave period.
    • PhD students must be within the first 48 program-months excluding any leave period.
    • PhD students who transfer from a master's program in accordance with General Regulation must be within the first 48 program-months of the master's commencement date excluding any leave period.
  1. In exceptional cases, an academic unit may recommend an extension of SGS Fellowship eligibility from baseline funds for one additional semester beyond the periods outlined in 2.c
  2. A student who was the recipient of a major scholarship or award, and as a result was ineligible for a SGS Fellowship under 4 below, may be recommended in exceptional circumstances for a SGS Fellowship for one semester beyond the periods outlined in 2.c.

3. Procedures for awarding SGS Fellowships

For students meeting eligibility as in 2:

  1. SGS Fellowships will normally be offered at the time of admission for a one-year period. Details should be specified in the “Program of Study” form. If the admission is deferred, the SGS Fellowship may, on the recommendation of the academic unit, be deferred for a maximum of three semesters.
  2. SGS Fellowships are renewable subject to the eligibility criteria in 2.a and 2.c and, in the case of thesis students, a satisfactory annual progress report. SGS Fellowships will normally be renewed at a value which is at least equal to that received in the offer of admission from the University and administered by the School of Graduate Studies in the initial program year.
  3. On commencement of a semester, academic units may recommend allocation of uncommitted or previously committed the School of Graduate Studies baseline funds that become available to:
    1. applicants, newly admitted students, or in-program students who were not offered SGS Fellowship support,
    2. in-program students who did not meet eligibility criteria on admission but are being reconsidered on the basis of improved performance as in 2.b.ii, units not specifying baseline funding norms, every attempt should be made to minimize the financial impact to the student. Or
    3. increase SGS Fellowship support to in-program students. Normally, such allocations will not be retroactive and will be in effect for the remainder of the student's eligible funding period, subject to renewal as in 3.b. above.
  4. Students receiving SGS Fellowships who transfer from a master's program to a PhD program shall receive the standard baseline differential support awarded to master's vs. PhD students currently in place in the student's academic unit of record. This differential support will be paid only for semesters in which a Master’s SGS Fellowship was received. The cost will be attributed to the academic unit’s School of Graduate Studies baseline.

4. SGS Fellowship Limitations 

Normally, the maximum allowed SGS Fellowship is as follows: Academic Units in Group 2 Master’s student $15,000 per annum (per annum PhD student $20,000 per annum.  All other Groups Master’s student $12,500 per annum PhD student $16,500 per annum
SGS Fellowships may not be awarded to:
Master's students receiving in excess of $27,500 per annum from all sources in a program year (September - August; January - December; May - April), excluding graduate assistantships, or
PhD students receiving in excess of $35,000 per annum from all sources in a program year (September - August; January - December; May - April), excluding graduate assistantships.

5. Administration of graduate student support (regardless of source)

Graduate student support will be paid bi-weekly. Academic units are responsible for initiating payments to students (including renewals) by submission of a Graduate Student Support Payroll form. It is also the responsibility of the academic unit to stop payments to students by means of the same form (e.g., program completed, leave of absence, academic standing, etc.).
Recommendations for adjustments to the level or source(s) of bi-weekly funding received by any student must be submitted to the School of Graduate Studies prior to the beginning of the semester in which these changes will take effect. Changes in SGS Fellowship amounts will normally remain in effect for the remainder of the student’s eligibility period.
Lump sum payments from sources other than the School of Graduate Studies baseline allocation may be made at any time, but will result in adjustment of SGS Fellowship amounts for the program year if limitations in 4 above are exceeded. However, where special circumstances warrant, and on approval of the Dean, the SGS Fellowship may be maintained.

6. Graduate Assistantships

Graduate Assistantships are an integral part of graduate student funding. The remuneration for Graduate Assistantship duties forms a portion of the student's financial support, and is awarded and paid on a semester basis. The duties to be performed by a student holding an appointment as a Graduate Assistantship will be assigned by the academic unit. Normally, a Graduate Assistantship unit consists of 56 hours of work over a 14-week period within a semester (i.e., an average of 4 hours per week). Required duties may include assisting in research and/or teaching, including marking of assignments, invigilation of examinations, or laboratory demonstration.
External Sources of Funding:
Africa Initiative
Alzheimer's Society of Canada
Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute
Bloorview Research Institute
Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute (CAPI)
Canadian Cystic Fibrosis
Canadian Diabetes Association
Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR)
Canadian Liver Foundation
Canadian Mental Health Associate of Newfoundland and Labrador
Canadian Student Health Research Forum (CSHRF)
Cancer Research Society
Chrohn's & Colitis Foundation of Canada
Heart & Stroke Foundation
International Development Research Centre  (IDRC)
Kidney Foundation of Canada
Leukemia Research Society
Lymphatic Research Foundation
National Cancer Institute of Canada
Newfoundland and Labrador Centre for Applied Health Research (NLCAHR)
Parkinson Society of Canada
Scottish Rite Charitable Foundation of Canada
Soroptomist Foundation of Canada
Students for Development (SFD)