Awards, Financial Aid and Research Funding Opportunities for Forestry Graduate Students in Research-based (PhD, MSc, MASc) Programs

Applicants successful in receiving an Offer of Admission to our PhD, MASc or MSc programs will be provided with a funding package from their supervisor. Financial support is drawn from a number of sources including awards (UBC scholarships, Faculty of Forestry internal awards), graduate teaching assistantships (GTA), and graduate research assistant stipends (GRA) from professors’ research grants. Some external awards (e.g. government-sourced scholarships or similar funding) may be counted as part of the funding package. Once admitted, continuing financial support is dependent on satisfactory academic progress and the original funding offer may also be adjusted if the student is successful in receiving a major scholarship or other significant funding.

The minimum funding package for Forestry MASc and MSc students is $18,200 CAD annually for the first 2 years of the program, unless otherwise agreed upon with the supervisor and approved by the Associate Dean at the outset of the program. The minimum funding package for Forestry PhD students is $22,000 CAD annually for the first 4 years of the program. The funding plan is described to our students in an agreement letter sent from the Associate Dean as part of the Offer of Admission package. Students and their supervisors are expected to review the funding plan on an annual basis to ensure that there is no lapse. Students are expected to make sufficient progress to finish within the 2-year or 4-year time frame and funding is not guaranteed beyond these time limits.

Throughout their program, research-based students are expected to apply for all financial awards for which they are eligible. The following section details the main award and funding opportunities available.

Funding opportunities for students entering a course-based Master’s degree (MF, MSFM, MIF, MGEM) are outlined within each of those programs’ “Tuition & Funding” web pages.

Award Resources

For a compendium of awards available for UBC graduate students, see the Awards and Financial Aid page of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

For a compendium of opportunities for research funding, check the Research Funding page of the UBC Office of Research Services.

Expand the sections below for details about the main award and funding opportunities available to Forestry graduate students in thesis-based programs.

Current Open Competitions

The Faculty of Forestry Indigenous and Community Engagement Research Fund (ICERF) provides funding for graduate students to build new partnerships with Indigenous communities and community organizations, and fulfill responsibilities relating to community-defined outcomes for existing partnerships and projects. A total of $22,500 is available for 2022/23 applications. There are two (2) annual funding call deadlines. First Call deadline is on Oct 15, 2022, and Second Call will be in Spring 2023 subject to funding availability. For more information, please refer to this document.

Questions about Forestry Graduate Award opportunities? Please check out the Funding & Award Opportunities section on the Graduate FAQs webpage or email

This Fellowship is funded by the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Graduate Support Initiative (GSI)
No Fixed Deadline

Open to both domestic & international incoming research students (PhD, MSc, MASc programs). Students cannot nominate themselves for this award but must be nominated by their supervisor, prior to their program start date. Faculty should contact the Forestry Graduate Admissions Coordinator for nomination procedures.  The eligible weighted GPA in each of the last two years of full time study is A- (80% at UBC) or higher (or equivalent).

The Faculty of Forestry Strategic Recruitment Fellowships are designed to attract and recruit excellent research students, particularly in disciplines where there is capacity for additional students. The SRF is primarily meant to be a top-up to the minimum total funding package arranged by the student’s supervisor.  SRFs are available in increments of $6,000 per year for 2 years (Masters) or 4 years (PhD). However, renewal after the first year is dependent on successful academic progress. SRF recipients must apply for all Major Awards (e.g., Tri-Council and University, etc.) for which they are eligible. However, because the SRF is to primarily be considered a top-up to the minimum funding package, success in receiving a major award will normally not affect SRF funding. The main exception to this policy is if the total of a student’s funding package (excluding research allowance) exceeds $35,000 annually. In these cases, the SRF payment for that year will be reduced accordingly.

No Fixed Deadline
Open to both domestic & international incoming PhD students.  Students cannot nominate themselves for this award but must be nominated by their supervisor, prior to their program start date. Faculty should contact the Forestry Graduate Admissions Coordinator for nomination procedures.  The eligible weighted GPA in each of the last two years of full time study is A+ (90% at UBC) or higher (or equivalent).

This program provides UBC’s best PhD students with a stipend plus full tuition coverage for the first four years of their PhD studies. Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies 4YF page for complete information.

4YF domestic students are required to apply for the Affiliated Fellowships, NSERC or SSHRC.  All 4YF holders are required to submit annual progress reports to secure continued 4YF funding for years 2-4.

Tri-Agency (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC) graduate scholarship opportunities and UBC Affiliated Fellowships are made on the basis of high scholastic achievement and evidence of skill (or potential skill) at research.

Note that the application process is extensive, and students are strongly encouraged to begin preparation for their applications and order transcripts well in advance.

Affiliated Fellowships

Doctoral-level – early September each year
Masters-level – early December each year
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies offers approximately 50 Affiliated Fellowships each year with values ranging from $175 to $30,000 (though most are in the range of $16,000). Applications are open to current and prospective full-time UBC graduate students in all disciplines and regardless of citizenship or visa status. The Affiliated Fellowship competition runs in concert with the Tri-Agency (CIHR, NSERC, and SSHRC) graduate scholarship competitions. Students who submit an NSERC, SSHRC or CIHR award application are also eligible for “unresticted” Affiliated Fellowship funding, and do not need to submit a separate Affiliated Fellowship application. However, to be considered for “criteria-based” Affiliated funding, NSERC, SSHRC or CIHR applicants must submit the list of criteria-based affiliated fellowships. Additionally, Vanier applicants must submit a full Affiliated Fellowship application to be considered for Affiliated Fellowship awards.

Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Award Opportunities page for complete eligibility information for Master’s and PhD students.

Canada Graduate Scholarships-Doctoral (CGS D) Program

Deadline: early September each year
The CGS D program supports high-calibre students engaged in doctoral programs in all academic disciplines. The CGS D program is a federal program of scholarships awarded by the granting agencies: CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC.

Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies CGS D page for complete eligibility information.

Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s (CGS M) Program

Deadline: early December each year
The CGS M program provides financial support to high-calibre scholars who are engaged in eligible master’s or, in some cases, doctoral programs in Canada (refer to Eligibility). The CGS M program is administered jointly by Canada’s three granting agencies: CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC.

Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies CGS M page for complete eligibility information.

Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

Deadline: Early September each year
The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships Program aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies and leadership skills. Vanier Scholarships have a stipend of $50,000 per annum, and are tenable for 24 or 36 months, depending on student eligibility.

Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Vanier Scholarship page for complete eligibility details.

Deadline: early May each year
Each Spring, the Faculty of Forestry holds an annual internal award competition for graduate students.  More than 20 merit-based awards are available.  The purpose is to recognize and reward outstanding academic performance of graduate students in the Faculty of Forestry.  Several awards are in memory of persons who have contributed significantly to the discipline of forestry in their lifetime. Some awards are to be given to graduate students doing research in a particular specialization or geographic area.

These awards are provided by external donors and are assigned by the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and the Forestry Graduate Programs Scholarship Committee.

Forestry Internal Awards will be exclusively used to reward students making exceptional progress and contributions. Forestry Internal Awards are not to be considered part of the student’s stipend, such that the stipend shall not be reduced should the student receive an Internal Award. However, if you are successful in receiving an Internal Award which is more than $3,000, the financial support as outlined in your student agreement letter may be adjusted accordingly.

Students must be registered for a minimum of 8 months but not have been registered for more than 24 months for master’s and 48 months for PhD. Consideration may be made for students beyond 24 master’s and 48 PhD months of study if their supervisor confirms that they are in the final stages of thesis and defense preparation.

Change to minimum months of registration: Students who have transferred to a PhD program from the UBC Forestry master’s program and students who have completed a UBC Forestry master’s program and then started a PhD program are eligible to apply for internal awards if they have less than 8 months in the PhD program at the time of application deadline.

Academic Standing – First-Class GPA (A- or higher) during graduate program to date.

Productivity – publications, reports, conference presentations, extension activities, engagement with Faculty, University or external community, awards (past, current and pending).

Students have opportunity to make the committee aware of particular financial situations such as decline in their stipend resulting from the end of an award or a reduction in grant funds available to them.

Deadline: None
This scholarship is automatically assigned to eligible international graduate students and is applied toward tuition costs.  Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies ITA page for complete details.

This award is available to all new and continuing PhD students except those who have their tuition paid by an external sponsor. It was established to recognize the significant contributions of PhD students to the research activities of the university. Award values per student are listed on the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

Deadline: early January
The University of British Columbia offers several fellowships and scholarships to Canadian Aboriginal graduate students, an Aboriginal person being a First Nations, Métis or Inuit person of Canada. Award winners are selected on the basis of academic merit through an annual competition.  Please refer to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Aboriginal Graduate Fellowship page for complete details.

Deadline: Full application instructions and deadlines are sent to incoming students in early July each year, and the recipient will be selected and notified by end of August.

The Faculty of Forestry makes available annual funds for two scholarships, up to $10,000 each, for Indigenous students entering any of UBC Forestry’s Master’s programs or PhD program. All Aboriginal students are eligible to apply but priority is given to those whose traditional territory falls, at least in part, within Canada. This includes Canadian First Nations (Status and non-Status), Métis or Inuit students and may include Aboriginal students from Alaska and the northern states of the USA. Scholarship applicants must be starting their first Master’s or PhD program at UBC Forestry and have a confirmed Offer of Admission for the coming academic year. If in any given year there are no eligible incoming students, UBC Forestry reserves the right to open the competition to a continuing Indigenous graduate student(s) in good academic standing. Assessment is made through review of the student’s program application file, as well as a Statement of Interest document for the scholarship.

Deadline: Grad Student Accelerate Programs – None. Postdoc Elevate Programs – varies.

Mitacs Programs connect businesses with university researchers in all disciplines who have advanced levels of expertise in areas that address vital research opportunities. It partners graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and their supervising professors with for-profit businesses and not-for-profit organizations – connections which help partners utilize new tools, technologies and methodologies to address issues that are vital to an organization’s success. Businesses benefit from the power of advanced research while graduate student interns benefit from exciting new research opportunities.

Refer to the Mitacs website for information on their Accelerate program (graduate student internship and fellowship opportunities); and Elevate program for postdocs.

Deadline: None
The Graduate Student Travel Fund provides support to allow students to participate in conferences related to their research.  Each award is worth $500.  See the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Awards page for instructions and forms.

Deadline: None
The Forestry Research-Based Graduate Student Conference and Research Dissemination Fund (Forestry R-CRDF) provides funding support to a maximum of $600 per research-based (PhD, MASc, MSc) graduate student. For research-based students, the fund can be used to reimburse eligible costs (presenting a paper/poster) to participate in person or virtual conferences related to research. The fund can also be used to reimburse eligible costs (article processing charge) associated with open access publishing. Funding is limited each year and will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to eligible applicants. Forestry graduate students are eligible to use the fund once during their graduate degree, after the student has exhausted the funds available to them through the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Travel and Research Dissemination Fund. See the application form for complete eligibility details and procedure and payment information.

The Mitacs Globalink Research Award provides $6,000 for graduate students in Canada to conduct 12–24-week research projects at universities overseas. Starting January 17, 2018, applications will be accepted year round, at any time.

  • Up to $6,000 in research award to the Canadian supervisor for student travel expenses
  • Open to all disciplines
  • For joint projects with academic collaborators over 12-24 weeks
  • Partner countries: Refer to the Mitacs website for list of partner countries

Applications accepted any time. Refer to the Mitacs website for more details and application instructions.

Deadlines: Vary
The Government of Canada offers support to Canadian students studying abroad, as well as to international students studying in Canada.  Please refer to the Government of Canada website for complete details and eligibility requirements.

Deadline: Fall and Spring each year
Students submit applications directly to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.
The Canada Graduate Scholarship Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements (CGS-MSFSS) Program supports Canadian graduate students pursuing exceptional research experiences at institutions outside of Canada.

Eligibility: This program is available to Canadian citizens or permanent residents who hold Tri-Agency Canada Graduate Scholarship (CGS) or Vanier funding at the Master’s or Doctoral level.
Supplements of up to $6,000 will be awarded to help offset the costs, including travel and accommodation, of undertaking research studies outside Canada for three to six months. Please note that international students who hold a Vanier scholarship are not eligible for this competition.

For details, please see:

Deadline: mid-January each year
PICS Graduate Fellowships are available on an annual basis to outstanding Masters and PhD students at the Institute’s four collaborating universities (UBC, UNBC, SFU and UVic) conducting research in an area related to climate change impacts and adaptation.

Please refer to the PICS website for complete eligibility requirements.

Deadline: none
The Rufford Small Grants Foundation is a charity established specifically for the development of Rufford Small Grants for Nature Conservation (RSGs). Since inception it has given in excess of 1700 grants in 130 countries. The Rufford Small Grants Foundation intends to build on this success.

RSGs are aimed at small conservation programmes and pilot projects. Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.  Review all information at:

The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) offers these awards twice a year, in April and October, to Canadians, Permanent Residents of Canada and citizens of developing countries pursuing doctoral studies at a Canadian university. These awards are intended for field research in one or more developing countries. Candidates must conduct their research in areas corresponding to IDRC program priorities.

Please see web page for details:

In-depth information about needs-based funding such as loans, bursaries and other types of financial aid is available from the UBC Student Services.

Students may apply for UBC bursaries, but must be in receipt of full Canadian Government student loan funding and have “unmet need” after their loan funding as determined in their loan assessment. UBC bursaries are non-repayable awards. They are designed to help fill unmet need, the gap between your assessed financial need and available government assistance.

Please see the UBC Awards & Money Management website for summer and winter bursary deadlines, and complete details.
Financial distress: If you are experiencing urgent financial distress, you can schedule a confidential advising appointment with an Enrolment Services Advisor, see this page for more details. If you are unable to resolve the situation through Enrolment Services, please contact the Forestry Grad Program Director, Gayle Kosh.

Deadline: Early March
This award is part of the UBC Public Scholars Initiative (PSI) which intends to build connections, community, and capacity for doctoral students who are interested in explicitly linking their doctoral work to an arena of public benefit and integrating broader and more career-relevant forms of scholarship into their doctoral education process.

More info on the G+PS website.

Deadline: mid-March
The China Scholarship Council (CSC) is a government agency in China which provides scholarships to students for doctoral and postdoctoral studies abroad. UBC has developed an agreement with the CSC and with specific Chinese universities to be a preferred host institution for CSC scholarship holders. These scholarships will be awarded to students across a wide range of disciplines.

More info on the G+PS website.

Deadline: Late-April
A number of University awards for upcoming academic year are available to current and incoming graduate students.

More info on the G+PS website.

Deadline: applications accepted on a rolling basis, see web page for details.

What is self-directed research abroad?
Students undertake research activity at a recognized research institution or institute under the supervision of a host academic. This can be initiated by the student or by a UBC faculty member wishing to send students abroad for the purposes of academic collaboration. Students enjoy the flexibility of a self-initiated research placement while building an international network of students and professors in their research area. Additionally, students may be able to explore a specific research topic that is not available at UBC and gain exposure to new skills, expertise and equipment.

Go Global offers a Self-Directed Research Abroad Award of $1000 -2000 to support students. There are a limited number of awards available each term. Awards will be approved and issued on a rolling basis to eligible students on a first-come, first-served basis, on the following timelines until funding has been exhausted.

More info on the Student Services website.

Full-time students may receive partial salary in return for assisting in teaching undergraduate courses.  GTA’s are required to devote a certain amount of time to marking assignments and instructing in laboratories, or on occasion a student with specific skills or experience may prepare and deliver lectures.   A GTA will be assigned and paid for a prescribed number of hours per week, not to exceed 12 hours.

Appropriate qualifications for a particular course are the major consideration in the selection of GTA’s by the instructor.  Instructions for applying and the positions available are posted by March 31st each year on each Forestry Department bulletin board and on the Forestry website.  Successful applicants are normally contacted in late August or early September.  Forestry students can also apply for TA positions in other faculties on campus. There is a preference system for hiring TA’s based on length in program and experience (refer to the GTA Union website for full details:

To view available positions, please see our Job Postings section.

Many students are paid Graduate Research Assistantships directly from their supervisor’s research grant. GRA’s are given in support of the student’s own research towards their degree. Satisfactory progress towards the student’s research is expected for payment of a GRA, but work not related to the student’s research program should not be required during the 2 or 4 years in which the student is expected to complete their degree.