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The 2021 NSERC USRA competition is closed.

Award Value: $7,500 ($6,000 with a department supplement of $1,500)
Duration: 16 weeks starting Monday, May 3, 2021
Deadline: Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 4pm (Eastern Time)

NSERC USRAs are meant to nurture your interest and fully develop your potential for a research career in the natural sciences and engineering. They are also meant to encourage you to undertake graduate studies in these fields.

Note: If you are applying for an NSERC, you will also be automatically considered for the UTEA.

Eligibility Requirements

  • are Canadian citizens or permanent residents
  • are registered in at least one of the two terms immediately before holding the award
  • have obtained, over the previous years of study, a cumulative average of at least second class (a grade of “B” or “B-,” if applicable) as defined by your university
  • are available to conduct research for 40 hours per week for 16 consecutive weeks during the summer

For a full listing of eligibility requirements, please visit the NSERC USRA website.

Selection Criteria

  • Assuming all other variables pertaining to the application are met, students with the highest cGPA receive high priority. The committee also looks at what courses the student has taken, especially courses that are of relevance to the project, as well as the student’s letter of intent.
  • Students in their second, third or fourth year of study are equally eligible. However, it is recognized that students in their second year have another chance to apply, and this is the last chance for a student in their fourth and final year.
  • Applicants who have held a previous NSERC USRA (or UTEA) receive lower priority.
  • A maximum of two applications per lab will be accepted. The sponsoring researcher will be asked to rank both applicants. The second-ranked applicant receives lower priority.
Photo by Christopher Reid