Nursing and Allied Health Scholarship Guide

Need money for nursing school or your health studies? Many nursing and allied health schools and departments offer an array of student scholarships and student bursaries for nursing and allied health studies. Awards typically range in value from $250 - $5,000, are often renewable and are based on outstanding academic achievement, or a combination of outstanding academic achievement and leadership qualities. As well, nursing and allied health students may be eligible for bursaries, which typically are based on financial need. Student loans may also be available, and work-study programs (involving part-time work for full-time students) are another source of money for school.

Student Scholarships and Student Bursaries
Entrance scholarships for students entering nursing and allied health programs from high school and other post-secondary institutions are typically awarded to outstanding new students. Bursaries are available to students and are more typically based on a combination of academic achievement and financial need and/or achievement in other areas such as leadership and community service. These awards may be offered by high schools, university and college nursing schools and health studies departments, professional organizations, local businesses and national chains, and charitable foundations. They may be available on a non-renewable or renewable basis.
  • Start your search by talking to your high school career counsellor to see what kinds of scholarships and bursaries are available for your particular nursing or allied health interest. Often high schools will offer awards to the best students or those most involved in club activities, which could include health oriented clubs such as those connected to health occupations, promotion of drug free environments, and awareness of AIDS/HIV.
  • Most universities, colleges, schools and program departments offer entrance awards, either directly or through benefactors and foundations that support them. You can contact an admissions advisor at the university, college, school or program department itself or look on the institution's website to identify the awards that are offered. Some scholarships and bursaries are program-specific and are limited to applicants to particular majors, diplomas or certificates within the field of nursing and allied health.
  • Many local businesses and national chains--and don’t forget your parents’ employers!--will offer some kind of funding either in the form of scholarships or bursaries. Local businesses and national chains offer awards as a way of showing their support for the local community, so don’t overlook this opportunity.
  • And don’t forget community groups in your home-town that are involved in the business of supporting nursing and allied health students (e.g., the Chamber of Commerce).
  • Many professional organizations will provide scholarships as a way of promoting their profession and ensuring the development of future health professionals. These could include the Canadian Association for the History of Nursing, the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada and more.
  • And finally, there are a variety of charitable organizations, from local to national, that provide literally millions of dollars of awards to post-secondary students.

Student Loans and Grants
Student loans and grants are other types of financial aid and are available to both students and parents. Often payments do not begin until the student finishes his or her program, and the interest rate is commonly lower than for other types of loans. For students with no established credit record, it is usually easier to get student loans than other kinds of loans. You can obtain information on the Canada Student Loans Program from your high school career counsellor, the university’s or college’s student services or financial aid department. As well, each province has a program that offers financial assistance to students.

Check out CampusStarter's database of Canadian Nursing and Allied Health Schools and Programs