Major External Postgraduate Awards

Major External Postgraduate Awards

Rhodes, Gates, and McCall MacBain

An exceptional number of students from the University of King’s College have become Rhodes Scholars. In light of this auspicious history, King’s encourages its most academically talented and well-rounded final-year students to consider the possibilities afforded by the Rhodes Scholarship (Oxford), as well as the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, and the recently created McCall MacBain Scholarship (McGill).

Rhodes Scholarship

The Rhodes Scholarship is open to undergraduate and graduate students in all faculties. The scholarship covers all university and college fees, a personal stipend, living/accommodation expenses, and two economy class flights (one at the start of the scholarship and one at the end of the scholarship) to study at the University of Oxford.

Up to 11 Rhodes Scholarships are awarded annually in Canada, including two in the Maritime Region (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island). A Rhodes Scholarship is tenable at the University of Oxford. Election to the scholarship is normally for two years but the scholarship may be held for one year only, depending on the degree program pursued by the scholar. A scholarship may be renewed, at the complete discretion of the Trustees, for a third and final year for those who were initially admitted to Oxford to pursue a doctoral degree. Scholars may follow their own course of study.

The Rhodes Trust focuses on four criteria which are used in the selection of Scholars:

  • Academic excellence
  • Energy to use your talents to the full (as demonstrated by mastery in areas such as sports, music, debate, dance, theatre, and artistic pursuits, particularly where teamwork is involved)
  • Truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship
  • Moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in your fellow human beings.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Be a Canadian Citizen or a permanent resident of Canada (students who are attending a Canadian university on a student visa are not eligible to apply). 
  • Be domiciled in Canada.
  • Must be between 18 and 24 years old on October 1 of your application year, or for students who completed their first undergraduate degree later than usual, must be under the age of 27 on October 1 of your application year. See Rhodes website for further details on age eligibility.
  • Have completed or will have completed by June/July of your application year, an undergraduate degree from a college or university (normally a bachelor’s degree) to a sufficiently high standard (e.g. First Class Honours or Distinction) to be admitted to postgraduate study at the University of Oxford. Please note the requirements for your chosen course at Oxford.

Note: Please review the criteria on the Which Scholarship page to ensure you are applying for the most appropriate Rhodes Scholarship.

How to Apply through King’s

Always defer to information provided by the official Rhodes website.

The application process for candidates has two parts: an internal screening process to secure the President’s recommendation and an external application submitted to The Rhodes Trust online portal by the student. See detailed steps below.

Insofar as King’s students are Dalhousie students, King’s students may opt to apply to the Rhodes Scholarship through Dalhousie’s internal selection process; however, students must choose one institution or the other through which to begin the application process, not both.

Step 1: Internal Application

Candidates are to email the following documents, in English, (preferably in one PDF document) to joanna.sheridan@ukings.ca:

  • Full curriculum vitae (should not exceed two A4 (12pt) pages)
  • 750-word personal statement
  • 350-word academic statement
  • Unofficial transcripts from all universities attended
  • Please note:
    • Birth certificate, valid passport, written statement from the President, official transcripts, photograph, and referee letters are not required for the internal process
    • You should contact your six referees and provide them with the Guidance for Referees document (available here) prior to mid-September. At least three or more of your referees should speak to your academic ability and two or more of your six referees should testify to your character. Institutionally endorsed candidates will need to have their referee letters written by early October for the Rhodes Trust online submission date.

Please see The Rhodes Scholarship for Canada Information for Candidates document (available here) for full details on the curriculum vitae, the personal statement and the academic statement.

Step 2: Internal Selection Process

Applications will be assessed through an internal process at King’s. Shortlisted candidates will be offered interviews at King’s, and on the basis of their application and interview, one or two students may secure the recommendation of the President to go on to the regional competition.

Step 3: Regional Application

  • External Application Submitted to the Rhodes Trust Online
    • Only those applicants endorsed by King’s will be provided with the authorization code to submit their application online
  • Regional competition involves:
    • Review of paper applications of university-endorsed applicants by regional committee
    • Interviews with a short-list of applicants selected from the paper applications

For more information, please see the official Rhodes Trust page.

Rhodes Application Timeline At A Glance

Spring and Summer

  • Rhodes Scholarship Information Session by King’s (virtual – August 23, 2023, 2:00pm ADT)


  • Internal Application Deadline (Sept. 8, 2023)
  • Internal Interviews for Selected Candidates (by appointment, week of Sept. 11, 2023)

Late September

  • Rhodes Trust Online Application Deadline (Sept. 28, 2023)


  • Rhodes Trust Online References Deadline (Oct. 5, 2023)

Late November

  • Maritime Regional Interviews (nominee may have to travel within the Maritimes for interview)

End of November/Early December

  • Rhodes Scholars Announced
University of King's College

Recent Rhodes Scholars from King’s

Nick Harris, 2021 Rhodes Scholar

Isabelle Roach, BSc(Hons)’20; 2019 Rhodes Scholar

Sarah Burns, BA(Hons)’15; 2015 Rhodes Scholar

Gates Cambridge Scholarship

A Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at the University of Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding. Each year Gates Cambridge offers ca. 80 full-cost scholarships to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. Approximately two-thirds of these awards will be offered to PhD students, with approximately 25 awards available in the US round, and 55 available in the international round.

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is awarded on the basis of four criteria:

  • Outstanding intellectual ability
  • Reasons for choice of course
  • A commitment to improving the lives of others
  • Leadership potential.

Eligibility Criteria

You can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship if you are:

  • A citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
  • Applying to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study at the University of Cambridge: PhD, MSc/MLitt, or a one-year postgraduate course.

Although this award is similar in structure to the Rhodes, students apply directly to this award by December or January, depending on the course of study.

For more information, visit the Gates Cambridge Website.

University of King's College

Recent Gates Cambridge Scholars from King’s

Cédric Blais, BA(Hons)’19; 2020 scholar

McCall MacBain Scholarship

The McCall MacBain Scholarship covers the recipient’s tuition and fees for an eligible master’s or second-entry professional undergraduate program at McGill and provide them with a living stipend of $2,000 per month during academic terms. In addition to the high-value awards tenable at McGill, the program offers smaller awards that can be held at any public university in Canada. The McCall MacBain Scholars program is not just financial support; rather it offers a cohort-based experience of retreats, workshops, and other programming.

The McCall MacBain Scholarship is awarded on the basis of five criteria:

  • Exceptional character
  • Community engagement
  • Leadership potential
  • Entrepreneurial spirit
  • Academic strength and intellectual curiosity.

Interested students apply directly to the scholarship. For more information, visit the McCall MacBain Website. Applications will open in June 2023 for September 2024 admission.

Questions? Contact us

Joanna Sheridan

Manager of Experiential Learning and Public Humanities; Assistant to the Vice-President , Vice-President's Office

joanna.sheridan@ukings.ca |