Trudeau Foundation Scholarship

Trudeau Foundation Scholarship awards up to fifteen scholarships to Canadian and foreign doctoral candidates pursuing research related to one of its four founding themes: Human Rights and Dignity, Responsible Citizenship, Canada in the World, and People and their Natural Environment. Fellows must be nominated by their universities.

Award: The Foundation recognizes that an openness to and understanding of multiple languages is a hallmark of leading academics, public intellectuals, and innovative educators. Possessing an understanding of Canada’s official languages enhances Scholars’ experience within the multilingual context of the Foundation’s events, as well as offering a greater understanding of Canada. The Foundation further recognizes the significance of Indigenous languages to Canadian culture and society.

Scholars will be provided with guidelines to ensure they increase their ability in the official language with which they are less familiar, as well as opportunities to learn Indigenous languages as part of their three-year Scholarship with the Foundation.

Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Scholars receive:

  • Membership in a vibrant community of Scholars, Mentors, and Fellows, all of whom are leaders in their respective disciplines and sectors;
  • Leadership training from our Mentors and Fellows;
  • Up to $40,000 per year for three years to cover tuition and reasonable living expenses; and
  • Up to $20,000 per year for three years, as a research and travel allowance;

Criteria: The Trudeau Foundation looks primarily at seven areas: (1) Academic excellence, (2) Thematic relevance of doctoral research to the Foundation’s four central themes, (3) Civic mindset, (4) Community engagement, (5) Leadership experience and abilities, (6) Originality and audacity, and (7) Communication skills and desire to contribute to public dialogue and knowledge dissemination.

Interest for the scientific theme of the 2020-2023 cycle: Technology and ethics. You do not have to have expertise on this topic, but you must be willing to engage with this theme as part of our leadership training program.

Applicants must be endorsed by the Office of Distinguished Scholarships in order to apply for the Trudeau Foundation Scholarship, and up to three candidates can be endorsed. Interested applicants are strongly encouraged to meet with the ODS director to learn more about the application process.

Application deadlines

ODS internal deadline for review: TBD

Scholarship final deadline: TBD


You are eligible to apply to the Trudeau Foundation if:

  • You must be already accepted into or in year one, two, or three of a full-time doctoral program in the humanities or social sciences (broadly defined)
  • Your doctoral work must relate to at least one of the Foundation’s four central themes: Human Rights and Dignity, Responsible Citizenship, Canada and the World, People and their Natural Environment
  • Canadian citizens are eligible whether they are at a Canadian or an international institution
  • Non-Canadians (permanent residents or foreign nationals) enrolled in a doctoral program at a Canadian institution are eligible

How to apply for UNC endorsement

  • Personal information form
  • 2 Essays
  • 2 Short-answer responses
  • Resume (1 page)
  • All relevant transcripts
  • Standardized test scores
  • Photograph
  • Video story
  • 2 Letters of recommendation

Resources for applicants


This is a newly endorsed scholarship, but we look forward to having UNC award recipients in the future!