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Victoria University Policy on Student Awards

General Policy Statement

1. Preamble
This policy applies to all student awards established in Victoria College and Emmanuel College of Victoria University. Its purpose is to ensure that the procedures followed in establishing such awards and in determining who will receive them are clear and consistent.

2. Definitions
a) “AWARD” is a generic term used to indicate an item of financial or other value presented to a student based on academic achievement or financial need.
b) “SCHOLARSHIP” is a financial award given on the basis of academic achievement.
c) “PRIZE” is a financial award (usually of smaller value) given for proficiency in a specific subject or course(s). Selection criteria other than performance in a course or courses (i.e. an essay competition) may also be used.
d) “MEDAL” is a university medal awarded to a graduating student on the basis of his or her overall superior academic performance.
e) “BURSARY” (Grant) is a financial award given to students on the basis of demonstrated financial need. Other selection criteria (such as extracurricular involvement) may also be used.
f) “OSAP” – the Ontario Student Assistance Program provides government funded repayable loans and non-repayment grants to eligible Ontario students.
g) “UTAPS” is University of Toronto Advance Planning for Students. UTAPS grant support is provided by the University to students whose assessed need is greater than government aid will cover.
h) “OSOTF AWARDS” are awards established through the Ontario Student Opportunity Trust Fund program. These awards are given to students who have financial need and are Ontario residents. (Residency defined as having lived in Ontario for 12 months prior to the beginning post-secondary studies.)

3. Principles
a) The purpose of the Victoria University Awards program is to attract, recognize and reward academic achievement, and to ensure accessibility for students registered in one of the Colleges of Victoria University.
b) The terms and conditions of all awards established since 1990 must comply with the Ontario Human Rights Code and must be free of criteria based on personal characteristics such as race, ancestry, colour, ethnic origin, sex, creed, age, marital status, family status, sexual orientation or disability. Victoria will continue to offer a few long established awards which are for men students only or women students only.
c) The policies and procedures of the Victoria University Awards program are developed and approved by the Senate Executive Committee.
d) Except where otherwise stated in the terms of an award, recipients must be registered at Victoria College and must be pursuing their first undergraduate degree, or be registered at Emmanuel College.

4. Establish New Awards
a) Gifts of funds for endowed awards are managed by the Bursar in accordance with the Board of Regents’ Statement of Investment Policies and Guidelines for Endowment and Pension Funds, with the intent that the real capital value of the funds will be maintained in perpetuity.
b) Terms proposed by donors must be approved by the Senate Executive Committee.
c) Terms laid down in bequests must be approved by the Senate Executive Committee.
d) New Awards are subject to the Victoria University policy on Donor Recognition.
e) Victoria University will provide the donor annually with a report on the status of their endowed fund. In the case of scholarships, but not bursaries, donors will be notified of the names of recipients. The University may provide this information to a member of the donor’s family after the death of the donor.
f) A named award may be established in Victoria University for a minimum endowment of $25,000. Where a donor wishes to establish an annually-funded named award, the commitment must be for an annual amount of at least $1,000, normally for a period of five years. Senate approval is required for the name and award terms. Donations of any amount to any Victoria University award fund are welcomed, and will be appropriately acknowledged.

5. Granting of Awards
a) The awarding body is the Senate Executive Committee on the authority of the Senate of Victoria University, which from time to time empowers the University Registrar to make decisions concerning awards based on clear guidelines.
b) For awards presented at graduation, the Senate is the awarding body on recommendation of the Senate Executive Committee.
c) To avoid conflict of interest, donors are not permitted to participate in the selection of recipients for awards for which they are the donor.
d) In determining financial need, the Senate Executive Committee relies on the OSAP need-assessment process and the UTAPS program at the University of Toronto. Alternative needs assessment methods may be used where financial need is not captured by OSAP.
e) All scholarship recipients MUST be in good standing (CGPA of 1.50+ (Victoria College) or CGPA 2.70+ (Emmanuel College) to receive an award.

6. Protection of Awards Information
Personal information about students and donors collected for the purpose of administering Victoria University’s financial assistance and awards program, is collected under the authority granted to the Victoria University Act 1951, as amended 1981. At all times it will be treated and protected in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

7. Outside Awards
Victoria University may provide assistance to external agencies providing scholarship and awards, where these might potentially benefit our students and where this has been approved by the Senate Executive Committee.

These policies will be reviewed by the Senate Executive Committee at least every three years.

Conjoint Basic Degree Scholarships and Awards Guidelines

In-Course (Tuition Waiver) Scholarships

Eligibility: Up to the top five basic degree students with an overall average of 85% or higher qualify for an in-course scholarship upon the completion of ten and twenty credits.

In-course scholarships may be deferred for one year only upon request. If the recipient does not register at Emmanuel College within one year, he or she will receive the honour of the award only.

An Emmanuel College in-course scholarship is forfeited when a recipient does not return to continue studies after a formal leave of absence. (EC Faculty May 2015)

Many students now pursue their studies on a part-time basis, which means that they seldom complete a credit group of ten or twenty courses at the end of an academic year. Many also continue their course work during the summer session, take courses under letter of permission at other theological colleges, and pursue the MDiv and MPS concurrently. The following guidelines are intended to address the issues that arise when students pursue degrees under these circumstances.

• At least five courses of a credit group of ten courses must be completed at Emmanuel/TST for a student to qualify for an in-course scholarship. [EC Faculty May 1993 and May 2015]

• The average of only TST courses determines scholarship eligibility. Courses taken elsewhere under letter of permission and on student exchanges to complete a credit group have a neutral effect on the average. [Senate Awards Committee May 1992]

Eligibility for scholarships and prizes for specific achievements, e.g., highest standing in basic N.T. Greek, is determined on the basis of courses taken at all TST colleges, but not on the basis of courses taken at Waterloo Lutheran Seminary or elsewhere. [EC Faculty April 1994 and May 2015]

If an uneven number of credits are completed at the end of a semester, the student may not select the credits with the highest marks to complete a particular credit group. Instead, the average grade of all courses taken during the semester in which the student reaches the tenth or twentieth credit point is used. [EC Faculty April 1994]

In-course scholarships take the form of a tuition waiver and are not paid to the students in cash. They are transferred to the University of Toronto to offset tuition fees. Students do not have the option of requesting cash payment to cover tuition fees payable for courses not registered through ACORN, or where there is no fee charge, e.g., TST language courses or courses taken under letter of permission at other institutions. [EC Faculty April 1994]

In-course eligibility is determined in early May. An award is made only when marks are available at the end of the winter session for a full credit group of courses. Students who apply for extensions beyond the end of the winter session exam week forfeit their consideration for such a scholarship. Students may not defer tuition payments in anticipation of a scholarship. Tuition may be deferred only when the student has received written notice of an award.

The letter grade “P” (for pass) has a neutral effect when a student’s average is calculated for scholarship purposes. Students do not have the option of requesting the instructor of a pass/fail course to submit a numeric grade nor of discussing with the instructor their preference for a numeric grade. [EC Faculty April 1994]

A number of basic degree scholarships are restricted to candidates for United Church of Canada ministry.

In-Course Awards

Eligibility: Students who meet the criteria of the awards.

In-course awards may be deferred for one year only upon request. If the recipient is not registered at Emmanuel College within one year, the person will receive the honour of the award only.

Graduating Awards

Eligibility: Students who meet the criteria of the awards

Presentation of Non-Monetary Graduating Awards

Presentation of medals and other non-monetary awards will take place at the annual Emmanuel College Graduation.

International Students

All international students are ineligible for in-course tuition waiver scholarships, but may be considered for in-course awards.

Conjoint Graduate Scholarships and Awards Guidelines

Eligibility for Funding

Entering conjoint PhD students are awarded a four-year scholarship package (minimum $6000).

Entering conjoint MA students are awarded a one-year scholarship package (minimum $3000).

In-Course Scholarships

An in-course scholarship may be deferred for up to one year if the recipient is on an official leave of absence. If the recipient does not register at Emmanuel College within one year, the recipient will receive the honour of the award only. The in-course scholarship is forfeited when a recipient does not return to continue studies after the leave ends.

The Emmanuel College Graduate Studies Committee takes into account a student’s academic progress when reviewing the awarding of scholarships.

Supplemental Funding

Awarded to all graduate students with demonstrated financial need and successful academic progress.  These grants may be made only if there are sufficient funds available and with no guarantee of renewal.  In exceptional circumstances, DMin students may be considered for supplemental funding.

Payment Policy

Emmanuel College-administered award payments are processed through ACORN. The funds are automatically applied toward tuition and/or any outstanding charges. Any remaining funds will appear as a credit balance. Students are responsible in requesting a refund. [Request a Refund link]

Entering Theological Education or John W. Billes Grants

Grants are issued to students through ACORN per term and normally after the last day to withdraw without academic penalty: Fall (November), Winter (March), and Summer (August).

In-Course Scholarships and Awards

  1. In-Course Tuition-Waiver Scholarships are issued to students through ACORN per term and normally after the last day to withdraw without academic penalty: Fall (November), Winter (March), and Summer (August).
  2. In-Course Awards are processed normally after the last day to withdraw without academic penalty in the subsequent Fall term in which the award is tenable and there is an active registration.
  3. Study Abroad Scholarships are processed upon confirmation of registration in the pre-approved exchange program and normally after the last day to withdraw without academic penalty.

Graduating Monetary Awards

  1. Payment of prizes and awards made to graduating students will not be contingent upon re-registration.
  2. Funds are issued to students through ACORN in July.


Bursaries are processed through ACORN during the period of registration for which the bursary was granted.

Change in Registration Status

Most awards specify that the holder must be registered for an entire term in an eligible program to be eligible to receive and keep that session's award installment. If you are going to be registered for less than the entire term, you should contact the college registrar to find out if you need to return all or a part of the award.

Students who withdraw, transfer to another program or college, or fail to complete the full term prior to the end of their award may be required to repay the funds already received for the incomplete session.

Financial Obligations of a Registered Student

A student is considered to be registered as soon as they have paid tuition and incidental fees, or has made appropriate arrangements to register without payment of the first tuition fee payment. Students who defer fee payment acknowledge that they continue to be responsible for payment of all charges, including any service charges that may be assessed. By virtue of being registered, a student agrees to abide by all academic and non-academic policies, rules, and regulations of the University of Toronto and of Emmanuel College in the Toronto School of Theology, and to ensure that the accuracy of personal information such as the mailing address, telephone number, and email address is maintained.

Award Explorer

Search for Emmanuel College's scholarships, awards and bursaries using the University of Toronto Award Explorer

For Conjoint Basic Degree students, click on "Undergraduate Awards."

For Conjoint Graduate students, click on "Graduate & Postdoctoral Awards."

Financial Planning Calculator

This calculator will show you how much money you will need to cover tuition and fees, housing costs, food and everything else for the upcoming academic year. You'll provide some background and income information, and we'll show you a budget summary and direct you to some useful resources to help you save money.

For conjoint basic degree students, click on the Start Planning button and select "Undergraduate" for "Upcoming Level of Study and "Toronto School of Theology" for "Faculty."


OSAP Aid Estimator

Full-time students who are Ontario residents can apply for governmental financial aid through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), which assists eligible students through a combination of grants and loans. OSAP can help full-time students pay for tuition, books and equipment, fees, living expenses, and child care. The amount of money an OSAP-eligible student receives depends on their educational expenses, course load, and personal financial situation.

OSAP Aid Estimator

More OSAP Information



Financial Assistance

Funding for All Conjoint Students

Financial Counselling

Students who have no immediate need of financial assistance may wish to discuss their financial situations with the College Registrar. These students are encouraged to complete a financial application form and to write at the top of the first page, "no funds requested."

Government Financial Aid

Except in cases in which an excessive debt load has been accumulated, domestic students applying for financial assistance should also apply for government student loans.

In each province, government aid programs are available for students who have limited financial resources and are based on the assumption that it is primarily the responsibility of the student and his/her parents or spouse to provide for post-secondary education. For more information, visit the UofT Financial Aid website.

For information on part-time OSAP and financial aid for students with disabilities, visit the UofT Financial Aid website.

Note for Emmanuel College Basic Degree Program OSAP Applicants:

  • The program of study to choose when completing the OSAP application is Theology Basic Degree Studies: Emmanuel.
  • Please be advised that the University of Toronto classifies professional degrees such as Theological Basic Degrees, Medicine, Dentistry and Law as "second-entry undergraduate degrees."

International Students

Emmanuel College is a publicly funded institution. Persons applying to a degree program who are neither Canadian citizens nor landed immigrants and who will be studying in Canada under a study permit (visa) should note, therefore, that they will be charged international fees. They must demonstrate that they have the resources to fund their studies in Canada. Normally, resources do not permit college funding of international students. However, some students may encounter financial emergencies while they are studying in Canada, and may qualify for a one-time-only emergency grant. Inquiries should be directed to the College Registrar.

Funding for Conjoint Basic Degree Students


Domestic students are expected to contribute to the costs of their theological education through savings, employment income, government student loans and funding from other sources such as family and external awards. Financial assistance provided by Emmanuel College should be regarded as only one component of total income.

College financial assistance is funded from a number of bursary and scholarship accounts established by generous donors to help basic degree students meet the costs of their theological education. When allocating funds, the Basic Degree Financial Assistance Committee considers three things: demonstrated financial need, commitment to theological education and academic progress. The Committee, in awarding need-based funding, also takes into consideration other academic awards (scholarships and prizes). The award amount ranges from $500-$4500.

To ensure that students requiring Basic Degree Financial Assistance are realistic about the costs of theological education, they are required to complete and submit a detailed, confidential application form in September or January.

Payment of all financial awards (Basic Degree financial assistance, scholarships and prizes) is made in November or March.

Summer Study

Where summer study is optional, no bursary funding should be provided. Students should be encouraged to work in the summer as work is part of the students’ educational experience and is important when the students look for permanent employment after graduation.

Funding for Conjoint Graduate Students

One-Time-Only Emergency Grant

One-time-only financial support may be available from Emmanuel College in the winter term for students who have encountered an unexpected financial shortfall. This financial support is not intended to be a source of continued funding.

Grants and Awards

In-course scholarships and prizes are awarded in May on the basis of general proficiency or standing in a specific course or subject. Visit the Award Explorer for more details.

The Entering Theological Education Grant is available to new domestic students, who are admitted to an Emmanuel College conjoint basic degree program (MDiv, MPS, MSMus or MTS) and registered full-time during the academic year. The grant is applicable for the first 12 months of initial registration. 

The John W. Billes Grant provides 100 per cent tuition support to all full-time domestic students registered in the Master of Divinity (MDiv) program and in The United Church of Canada Candidacy Pathway. The grant period limit is up to the first three years of study.


External Awards

MDiv Students in the UCC Candidacy Pathway

The Anniversary Bursary Fund

The Anniversary Bursary Fund at Eglinton St. George’s United Church in Toronto awards bursaries to candidates for ministry in The United Church of Canada who are registered in a campus-based ordination program of a United Church Theological School. Individual awards of $1,000 or more are granted after careful consideration by the Anniversary Bursary Committee. The decision is based on the financial needs of the candidates, their academic achievement and their statement of faith.

The deadline for submission each year is normally October 15.

Application Forms may be obtained from the ESG office:
The subject line should state Bursary Application. 

The Woodwark Student Bursary

The Woodwark Student Bursary Fund was established in 1976 by the Reverend Ken Woodwark and his wife Ida in memory of their parents George and Emma Woodwark and George and Katie McDowell. Reverend Woodwark was a Minister at Woodroffe United Church in Ottawa.

MDiv Unitarian Students 

Canadian Unitarian Council Theological Education Funds

MDiv and MSMus Students

Grand Chapter Order of the Eastern Star, Ontario: Canada Eastern Star Training Awards for Religious Leadership (ESTARL)

The Grand Chapter offers bursaries for students who will be or are enrolled in an accredited college or university for training in ordained ministry or church music, and who have financial need. Please contact your nearest ESTARL chapter for more information and application.

Interested applicants should contact a member of a local Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star or contact Bill Gibson or Rosemarie Delahey for an application form. Completed applications must therefore be submitted to a local OES Chapter for approval before June 1.

The background, eligibility criteria and contact information for these awards can be found on the OES website at

Grand Chapter Order of the Eastern Star, Ontario: Canada Eastern Star Training Awards for Religious Leadership (ESTARL)


MDiv or PhD United Church of Canada Students

United Church Foundation

Willowdale Emmanuel United Church Scholarship / Bursary

(Rev. Hee Sup Kim Scholarship Fund)

This scholarship/bursary is managed by Willowdale Emmanuel United Church located in North York, ON.  It serves a Korean and English-speaking congregation that seeks to be an intercultural faith community. Our congregation is focused on building diversity, respect, justice, and richness of life and ministry.    

Donor: In loving memory of her husband Rev Hee Sup Kim, who loved and supported the United Church and wanted to help ministry students who need help funding their training.    

Value: This scholarship fund is valued at $2,500 each to 6 students.


  • To MDiv students in the UCC Candidacy Pathway, with a preference for Korean-speaking students
  • To graduate students studying at a UCC theological school and/or in the UCC Candidacy Pathway, with a preference for Korean-speaking students

Applications for this scholarship are due by Feb. 1.  Send the completed application via email.

Conjoint Graduate Degree Students

Ontario Graduate Scholarships (OGS)

The Ontario Graduate Scholarship is a provincial program designed to encourage excellence in graduate studies at the master's and doctoral levels. An OGS is awarded to a student for one academic year of two or three consecutive terms. The Province of Ontario contributes two-thirds of this amount and the student’s College provides one-third. Scholarship and supplemental funding already earmarked for Emmanuel students who receive Ontario Graduate Scholarships will be deemed to provide the required match. Visit the TST Scholarships and Bursaries website for details. Both international and domestic students can apply.

Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Scholarship

The annual Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation (PETF) Scholarship competition recognizes excellence in the humanities and social sciences. The PETF Scholarship offers a three-year leadership program designed to train Engaged Leaders, in addition to offering a stipend of up to $40,000 per year and additional support up to $20,000 annually for research-related travel, and to attend Foundation leadership training institutes and events.

Redemptorist Anniversary Bursary

Bursary for graduate students whose focus is on Moral Theology. Click here for details.

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Fellowships

All graduate students are eligible to apply for SSHRC Fellowships. The Fellowship Guide for applicants and web-based application forms are available at the TST Scholarships and Bursaries website. Only domestic students can apply for SSHRC Fellowships.

The Margaret O’Gara Scholarship for Advanced Degree Students in Ecumenical Theology

Up to $2500. Application deadline: December 1. Details here.


Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

Please see the School of Graduate Studies website for information regarding eligibility and the application process. A link to the video recording of the live Vanier info session may also be found on this page.

Please ensure to send the GCTS a screenshot of your submitted application by 11:59 p.m. on September 15

Louisville Institute Fellowships

Three fellowship programs support early career scholars considering vocations in theological education, and whose research has the potential to bridge church and academy and enrich the life of the church in North America.

Conjoint Basic and Graduate Degree Students

Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)

The federal and provincial governments provide financial support to qualified students who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Ontario. The amount of the loan depends on calculated financial needs.

Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)

OSAP Calculator

Forum for Theological Exploration

The Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE) is a leadership incubator that inspires young people to make a difference in the world through Christian communities. FTE offers diverse young adults, students and partner organizations financial support and opportunities to develop leadership in the face of complex shifts in the church, economy and theological education.

Forum for Theological Exploration

The Lois Freeman Wilson Fund: Supporting Global Ecumenical Experiences for Canadian Youth and Students

Grants in the $300-500 range will be available to Canadian Students and Youth seeking to attend global ecumenical or interfaith events and experiences. Priority will be given to fund participation in SCM and WSCF events, but others will qualify. Application deadline is April 15 (for disbursement in June) and December 15 (for disbursement in February) each year.
Visit their website for details.

Nancy A. Hardesty Memorial Scholarship

A $1,000 scholarship is given each year to a college senior or graduate student who is pursuing studies in religion or theology. The scholarship is awarded to a student who aspires to exemplify the values and achievements of Nancy A. Hardesty, a founding member of the Christian Feminism Today organization. The application window remains open until April 15. More information is available on the Christian Feminism Today website

Toronto School of Theology

A listing of internal and external scholarships and bursaries for basic and graduate degree students.

Toronto School of Theology

University of Toronto Student Union

The UTSU Student Aid Program offers bursaries and grants to those in financial need.


The John Gartshore Integrity Award

Prize value: $2,000


This award will be made based on financial need and academic ability, with preference given to students whose work focuses on questions of sexual orientation in theology and in the practice and teaching of the contemporary church. The award will be made by the Committee of the Teaching Staff in the Faculty of Divinity in Trinity College. First consideration will be given to students in the Faculty of Divinity at Trinity College -- in either basic or advanced degree programs -- but will not exclude consideration of other TST students.

To apply:

Please send an email with the following documents: 

  • Application form
  • Statement of research interest and one paper
  • Statement of financial need
  • One letter of support from a TST faculty member

Deadline: March 31