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HWDSB created this page to help our community communicate award opportunities for students. This includes scholarships, bursaries and awards of distinction. Awards may or may not include a financial reward.

When your award is posted, you can then approach the schools individually for approval to distribute this information. Please note that if an award is not on the Awards page, HWDSB schools will not distribute the information.

Do you want your award displayed on this page? Click the tab to view our guidelines and then click here for the form to submit an award!

Chaney-Ensign Bursary Fund
Two application deadlines – October 1 and February 1

NEED HELP WITH TUITION? A bursary is money to help pay for your education that you don’t need to pay back. Ever!
Hamilton Community Foundation is a local charity. We have a program called the Chaney-Ensign Bursary that’s specifically for postsecondary students like you who graduated from high school in Hamilton.

Complete the application on our website by these dates:

  • February 1
  • October 1 You can apply (and receive funds) in both rounds.

Three steps to get a bursary:

  • Graduate from a publicly funded high school in Hamilton.
  • Apply for OSAP (you don’t need to have received funding).
  • Submit application for a bursary.

Apply online here when the portal is open.

BASEF Bursary Program
Deadline: February 10, 2024

The BASEF Bursary Program helps students in need of financial assistance start or complete their science fair project.  Up to 10 bursaries of $30.00 each will be awarded to Grade 7 to 12 students in BASEF’s catchment area to assist with their project. Teachers are able to nominate students on their behalf. In order to be more accessible to students, we will be accepting student-based nominations.

For more information and to access the application form, please click here.

McMaster University
Access Awards
Application Deadline:  February 21, 2024

Provides up to $20,000 per year for four years of post-secondary education at McMaster.  Plus, mentorship, employment options and academic supports to set you up for success.

Who is eligible:
Academically qualified students from equity-deserving and historically under-represented groups in Hamilton and the surrounding area.  Students applying to McMaster undergraduate programs for Fall 2024 are encouraged to apply.

How to apply:
Complete and submit your application to McMaster University through the Ontario University Application Centra (OUAC).

Apply for the Access Award using McMaster’s AwardSpring platform. Your application must include:

    1. A short essay describing the barriers you’re experiencing and why you want to attend McMaster
    2. A reference letter.

Click here for more information.

Edge Spirit Award 2024
Deadline: February 28, 2024

The Edge Spirit Award was created in March 2014 and will be awarded each year at the Hamilton Charity of Hope Dinner.

Overview: The Edge Spirit Award in memory of Morris Mercanti recognizes an outstanding high-school aged individual that embodies the same values of Charity of Hope co-founder, Mr. Morris Mercanti. A business icon, a community leader, a family man, and a friend to many who needed a helping hand, Morris Mercanti made the lives of everybody around him better.

A scholarship bursary in the amount of $2000 will be provided to the successful recipient in honour of Morris Mercanti. Individuals applying for the Edge Spirit Award must demonstrate that they possess the following values:
1) An Endurance to Overcome Obstacles
2) A Positive Attitude that Inspires Others
3) A Pursuit of Continuous Learning and Education
4) A Competitive Edge

Click here for information on the nomination process and the nomination form.

Zonta Club of Hamilton
Deadline: March 1, 2024

Apply for our Young Women in Public A­ffairs Scholarship
1 application, 2 award opportunities
Club Award $1,000 CAD
District 4 Award $5,000 USD

  • a student age 16 to 19
  • you enjoy volunteering
  • you have leadership skills used in your school or the community
  • want to help build a better world for women and girls

The Young Women in Public Affairs Award is a Zonta International program funded by contributions to the Zonta Foundation for Women. Zonta International is a leading global organization of individuals working to build a better world for women and girls.

• Visit www.zontahamilton1.ca
• Call Dianne at 905-741-5953
• Email [email protected]

University of Waterloo Department of English Language and Literature
Writing in Colour: Grade 11 Essay Colloquium Award
Deadline: March 1, 2024

To apply, students submit an essay on the year’s selected topic. This year, we have chosen the topic of Connections. The students with the top essays will be chosen and asked to participate in a student colloquium at the University of Waterloo, where the winning essay will be selected for a $1000 prize. In addition to the prize, the winning student will also be offered an opportunity to meet with some members of the university community who could be helpful to their future ambitions.

Open to grade 11 students who are Black, Indigenous, or students of colour.

Additional information can be found at https://uwaterloo.ca/english/awards/writing-colour

Western University’s National Indigenous Scholarship Program
Deadline: March 14th, 2024 (11:59pm EST)

The National Indigenous Scholarship Program is awarded annually to five incoming Indigenous undergraduate students (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit) studying full-time at Western’s main campus based on their outstanding academic excellence. The National Indigenous Scholarship also recognizes the candidate’s academic achievements, creative and innovative thinking, and previous or intended contributions to Indigenous communities (on and off reserve as well as urban settings).

Scholarship Values

  • 3 awards at $50,000 each to Indigenous students applying from Canadian high schools for full-time studies at Western’s main campus in the Faculty of Arts & Humanities, Engineering, Music, Health Sciences, FIMS, Social Science, Science. ($20,000 for year-one, $10,000 for year’s two to four based on ongoing registration)
  • 2 awards at $50,000 each to Indigenous students applying from a postsecondary institution (college) for full-time studies at Western’s main campus in the Faculty of Arts & Humanities, Engineering, Music, Health Sciences, FIMS, Social Science, Science. ($20,000 for year-one, $10,000 for year’s two to four based on ongoing registrati

For more information about eligibility requirements or to apply please go to https://studentservices.uwo.ca/NationalIndigenousScholarship/Students/NSIntroPage.cfm

State of Kindness Scholarship Fund
Deadline: March 31, 2024
$5,000 – $15,000 scholarship

The State of Kindness Scholarship fund seeks to overcome the difficult circumstances that many youth today find themselves in. We understand the life-changing opportunities that education provides, and through scholarships we allow students with potential to overcome adversity, financial disadvantages and constraints, to realize their inherent potential and largest ambitions.  The State of Kindness academic scholarship program provides financial assistance to promising young students who want to further their education, achieve their goals and inspire others. Students with an academic willingness who have faced financial adversity become ambassadors to a connected network of diverse industry professionals, community leaders, mentors and program alumni.


  1. Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.
  2. Be a resident of Ontario.
  3. Be in their final year of high school, entering into full-time post-secondary studies in either a bachelor degree or diploma/certificate program.
  4. Have a cumulative average of 75% for grade 11 and available grade 12 marks.
  5. Have faced financial adversity.


  1. Two Letters of Reference
  2. Updated Resume
  3. Recent High School Transcripts
  4. About me 750 word essay

For more information, please visit http://www.stateofkindness.ca/scholarships/

Heritage Green Community Trust Scholarship Program
Application Deadline: April 1, 2024

Share your ideas to build a better community. Up to Fifteen $2,500 scholarships to be awarded!

The Heritage Green Community Trust believes in giving back to the community of Upper Stoney Creek. What better way to give back than to promote continuous learning and higher education to the students living in our area. The Heritage Green Community Trust Scholarship Program provides financial support to students to continue their education at the post-secondary level who put forward visionary ideas to stimulate community building.

Don’t miss out on this great opportunity! Application packages, including program details, are available through the Heritage Green Community Trust website: www.heritage-green.org

For further information contact:
Kim Bailey
Trust Administrator
Tel: (905) 548-5877
E-mail: [email protected]

Lions Club of Stoney Creek
Deadline:  April 30, 2024

The Stoney Creek Lions Club is a non-profit belonging to an international organization of volunteers, and members who participate in serving its respective communities. “WE SERVE”.

In 2024, the Lion’s Club of Stoney Creek has approved four bursary grants of $500.00 to be awarded to students of senior year moving forward on to post secondary education. The bursary award intended to be equality awarded between schools and students within Stoney Creek district.

The two eligible secondary schools in our district are.

  • Orchard Park Secondary School
  • Saltfleet District High School

To be eligible for the bursary award the student must be a person who ordinarily resides in the geographical area served by the Stoney Creek Lions Club and attend the schools listed above.
Eligibility: District High School noted above, each (2 awards of $500.00)
You should be between the age of 17 to 21 of age.
The applicants are reviewed by committee in the order of:

  • Proof of acceptance to Post secondary education.
  • Need of the applicant.
  • Community volunteer and community commitment.
  • Acceptance where the Lions Club of Stoney Creek may make known of individual Bursary award with student/parental permission.

Please email [email protected] for the application form.

McMaster University
Youth in Extended Society Care Tuition Bursary
Application Deadline:  May 22, 2024

If you grew up in the care of the Children’s Aid Society and are planning to attend McMaster, you may be eligible for financial support. Bursary funding is available towards tuition and compulsory fees. This funding is renewable, subject to meeting eligibility requirements for up to four years.

Who is eligible?
You’re eligible if you:
– Have completed extended society care in Ontario (not publicly adopted) in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Area (a minimum of one year).
– Self-identify through the OSAP application process and provide the supporting documentation (OSAP Verification of Status with Children’s Aid Society Form).
– Are a permanent resident, refugee or citizen of Canada.
– Apply for non-repayable grant funding through full-time or part-time OSAP each academic year. Students are not required to apply for loan funding.
– Apply for non-repayable grant funding through full-time or part-time OSAP each academic year. Students are not required to apply for loan funding.

If you do not meet these criteria, consider applying for other funding opportunities. If you have any questions about the eligibility requirements, please contact [email protected].


Deadline to apply:  May 30, 2024

This $1,000 bursary was initiated by the overwhelming need to assist the children of injured workers that need assistance with post secondary studies.

Must be the child of a parent currently or past on WSIB benefits.


Think Big Scholarship
(ongoing opportunity)

As a Partner in Education Toromont Cat is pleased to award students with a scholarship upon admission to one of our sponsored College Programs. With over twenty thousand dollars designated for scholarships Toromont Cat is paving the way to a rewarding career as a Technician.

Up to ten awards of $2,000.00 will be awarded to successful applicants; $1,000.00 towards 1st semester tuition then upon successful completion of semester 1, $1,000.00 will be awarded to towards the remainder of the program.

Click here for more information.

Click here to complete the scholarship form.

Federal Education Grants and Bonds
(ongoing opportunity)

To help save for a child’s future studies, the Government of Canada provides two education savings incentives, which are deposited into a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). The Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) consists of a basic amount of 20% on the first $2,500 in annual personal contributions to an RESP (this grant is available to all eligible beneficiaries regardless of family income), as well as the additional amount of Canada Education Savings Grant, which is:

      • 10% on the first $500 of annual personal contributions for children from families with an adjusted income greater than $46,605 and up to $93,208; or,
      • 20% on the first $500 of annual personal contributions for children from families with an adjusted income of $46,605 or less.
        CESG is available until the end of calendar year in which the beneficiary turns 17, and the maximum lifetime amount, including the additional amount of Canada Education Savings Grant, is $7,200.

The Canada Learning Bond (CLB) is available for eligible children from low-income families born in 2004 or later and provides an initial payment of $500 plus $100 for each year of eligibility, up to age 15, for a maximum of $2,000. Personal contributions are not required to receive the CLB.  RESPs are the only savings vehicle that attract the federal and, where applicable, provincial education savings incentives. The money saved in an RESP is not only used to help with tuition, but can also be used to pay for housing, transportation and other education-related expenses, such as textbooks, equipment, supplies, etc., once enrolled in post-secondary education. You will need you and your child’s SIN. Visit your bank and ask to open an RESP.

Learn more: Brochure

Criteria for awards

Awards will be approved based on the following criteria. For context, the promotion of awards will align with the Education Act:

Education Act, Regulation 298 S.24:  No advertisement or announcement shall be placed in a school or on school property or distributed or announced to the pupils on school property without the consent of the board that operates the school except announcements of school activities.

Criteria for Approval:

  1. There cannot be a fee for a student to apply for an award.
    1. A student providing their likeness (name, photo, post-secondary institution, area of study, etc.) may not be a requirement to be considered for an award.
    2. The organization offering the award is responsible for obtaining consent before a student’s name, photo or any personal information is shared or posted where it is accessible to the public (e.g., on websites, social media platforms or in print material)
  1. The material must NOT contain commercial advertising, corporate logos, reference to corporate sponsors, or be a private business, unless these are directly linked to an award.
  2. The information must be respectful of all faiths, races and ethnic backgrounds.
  3. The information must respect the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA) and the Education Act.

Awards will be removed after their application deadline. If your award is offered annually, you will need to resubmit each year.


Questions regarding the distribution of award opportunities should be directed to:

Hamilton Foundation for Student Success
905-527-5092 ext. 2103
email [email protected]


Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of information regarding scholarships on this website. It is the responsibility of the student to do research early in order to note deadline changes, revisions to criteria, and so on. Contacting the sponsor directly for the most up-to-date information is recommended.

HWDSB schools may have awards that are specific to a given school. That is, only students attending a given school may be eligible for certain school specific awards. Check with your Principal (elementary) or Guidance Counsellor (secondary) for more information about school specific awards offered by your school.

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