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Walter C. Sumner Memorial Fellowships

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Scholarship at a glance

Deadline: April 1, 2024 at 4:00 p.m. Atlantic time
Value: Up to $8,000 per year for up to two years
Scholarship type: Entrance or in-program
Degree level: Doctoral
Available to: Canadian students, preferably those from Nova Scotia or the Atlantic Provinces


In accordance with the terms of the wills of the late Emma E. Sumner and John R. Sumner, Fellowships, to be known as "Walter C. Sumner Memorial Fellowships" are available from the Walter C. Sumner Foundation.

At the discretion of the Foundation, approximately 40 fellowships, valued at up to $8,000, will be awarded each year. Candidates must be nominated by one of the participating universities. Recommendations for the award of fellowships will be made to the Foundation by a selection committee of senior scientists who are not from the participating universities. The fellowships may be distributed unevenly among the participating universities. Preference will be given to those born in Nova Scotia, followed by those born in any of the other Atlantic Provinces.

Fellowships will be awarded at the discretion of the Foundation. Fellowships will initially be for one year, but may be extended for a second year. Second-year applicants do not have to submit an application form, but the following documentation must be provided. The student must submit a one-page report with information on: (a) the research completed, (b) any papers in press or published, (c) a transcript showing results of any course work, (d) papers or posters presented, and (e) any other relevant information. In addition, the student must submit a letter from their research supervisor, indicating that in their view satisfactory progress has been made by the student. This letter must also be signed by the Dean of Graduate Studies for the applicable university. Finally, the letter must disclose whether the applicant has been awarded a Canada Graduate Scholarship (CGSD) for his or her second year of study.

Awards and Payment

The remuneration associated with each fellowship will be paid to the university where the fellow will be studying. The university will be responsible for disbursement of the fellowship on a monthly or quarterly basis.

Cancellation of Fellowships and Conditions of Tenure

A fellowship may, at the discretion of the Foundation, be cancelled with or without the advice of the university where the fellow is studying; particularly if the fellow fails to achieve or maintain research progress or otherwise becomes ineligible. Any un-disbursed funds held by the university for the account of the fellow shall be returned to the Foundation.

It is a condition that any research done during the tenure of a fellowship that is published, presented orally, or given as a poster, must include an acknowledgement to the effect that the author held a Walter C. Sumner Memorial Fellowship.

Eligibility criteria

  • You must be enrolled in or about to start a doctoral program in Chemistry, Physics or Electronics (including Computer Science and Electrical Engineering). 

  • You must be a Canadian citizen. Preference will be given to students born in Nova Scotia and the Atlantic Provinces.

  • You hold a degree from a Canadian university other than Dalhousie.

  • If you hold a Canada Graduate Scholarship, you must inform the Walter C. Sumner Foundation when completing the scholarship application. 

Application Overview


Using the Walter C. Sumner Memorial Fellowship application form [PDF-157kb], please note the steps below.

  1. You must complete Part 1 of the application, save it as a PDF and send it via email to
  2. You must forward Part IIA (pages 9 and 10) to the faculty member who supervised your most recently completed thesis. The faculty member should complete that section and return it directly to
  3. You must forward Part IIB (pages 11 and 12) to your proposed or current supervisor. This individual should complete that section and return it directly to
  4. You must forward PartT IIIA (page 13) to the department chair or graduate coordinator of the department in which you are undertaking doctoral studies. This individual should complete that section and return it directly to