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Graduate Studies

Mackenzie King Memorial Scholarships

The Mackenzie King Scholarships were set up under the will of the Rt. Hon. W.L. Mackenzie King (1874-1950), who was Prime Minister of Canada 1921-26, 1926-30, and 1935-48.

Two types of the Mackenzie King Scholarship are available to graduates of Canadian universities: the Open Scholarship and the Travelling Scholarship. Both are to support graduate study.

Value of Awards

The Open Scholarship has been recently valued at $11,000, however, this is subject to change. The Travelling Scholarship has been recently valued at $12,500, however, this is subject to change.

Quota of applications that can be submitted by McMaster University

  • 2 for the Open Scholarship category
  • 2 for the Travelling Scholarship category


Applications must be made to the School of Graduate Studies of your “home” university. This is the Canadian university from which you most recently graduated or at which you are currently enrolled. You must be a graduate (holder of a degree) of a Canadian university when tenure of the scholarship begins.

The Open Scholarship is open to:

  • graduates of any Canadian university who engage in (commencing or continuing) graduate studies (master’s or doctoral) in any field, in Canada or elsewhere.

The Travelling Scholarship is open to:

  • graduates of any Canadian university who engage (commencing or continuing) in graduate studies (master’s or doctoral) in the United States or the United Kingdom.
  • those involved in international relations or industrial relations (including the international or industrial relations aspects of law, history, politics and economics).

Selection Criteria

  • The assessment of nominees for Mackenzie King Scholarships focuses on the following criteria:
  • The awards will be based on high academic achievements (typically all A’s or very nearly so)*
    personal qualities demonstrated aptitudes
  • Consideration will also be given to the applicant’s proposed program of study.

* This is an extremely competitive competition. As such, it is recommended that students with an 11.0-12.0/12.0 GPA apply as only two applications for each type of award (Open Scholarship and Travelling Scholarship) will be put forward to the national competition.

Application Instructions for students

 The School of Graduate Studies deadline is Monday, February 1, 2022.

Each applicant must upload their complete application as one PDF to MacDrive by using this upload link. Please use the following naming convention for your application Mackenzie King App_LAST NAME.

  1. The completed and signed application form.
  2. Supplementary information on academic achievements and experience (attach as Sheet ‘A’ to application). Sheet ‘A’ can be more than one page.

The supplementary information must include:

  • Any undergraduate and graduate awards received including the name, years of tenure and the annual value
  • Any work experience, professional, business, related to field of study
  • Any publications relevant to field of study
  1. Personal Statement describing academic interests, extracurricular activities, program of studies intended to pursue, and outline of career plans in 600 words or less (attach as Sheet ‘B’ to application). Your statement must be readily understandable by those outside of your discipline.
  2. Copies of official transcripts of marks and other academic records from each university you have attended.

Reference Letter

  • Reference letters should be submitted, by email, directly to by their Referees, with the Subject Line: Mackenzie Ref Ltr_APPLICANT’S LAST NAMEThree letters of reference from persons who have an intimate knowledge of your record and ability and are able to give a critical evaluation of your plans for graduate study. The letters of reference must be on letterhead, signed, and must clearly indicate the name and contact information of the referee.

    At least two of these testimonials must be from persons under whom you have taken your major work at university, or from senior colleagues with whom you have been associated in academic teaching or research.

Notification and submission

  • Applicants moving forward to the national competition will be notified by The School of Graduate Studies by March 8, 2022.
  • Please note that applications sent directly to the Board by applicants will not be considered.

Final submission to the Board of Scholarship Trustees

The School of Graduate Studies will forward the recommended candidates by March 15, 2022.