February 25, 2024
mccall macbain scholarship

The McCall MacBain Scholarship is widely considered one of the most prestigious and generous graduate scholarships in Canada. Offered by McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, the scholarship covers full tuition, fees, and living expenses for a master’s or second professional degree program. It provides recipients with a robust student experience focused on mentoring, leadership development, and an interdisciplinary approach to solving social problems.

Since its inception in 2013, the McCall MacBain Scholarship has aimed to attract top talent from across Canada and internationally. As stated on the scholarship website, “McCall MacBain Scholars are exceptional graduate students who demonstrate academic excellence, leadership potential, and a commitment to improving society.”

Winning the McCall MacBain Scholarship is a mark of distinction that can open doors to top careers or further academic pursuits after graduate studies. This article outlines everything you need to know about the scholarship, eligibility criteria, selection process, requirements, and tips for putting together a strong application.

Details of the McCall MacBain Scholarship

The McCall MacBain Scholarship covers the full cost of tuition and fees for a master’s or professional degree at McGill University. Scholars also receive a generous monthly stipend of $2,000 CAD to assist with living expenses (McGill University).

The scholarship is open to students pursuing a wide range of graduate programs at McGill including:

  • Arts
  • Music
  • Science
  • Engineering
  • Medicine
  • Law
  • Environment
  • Sustainability

The scholarship aims to support outstanding future leaders across diverse fields. Students from any undergraduate major are encouraged to apply.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the McCall MacBain Scholarship at McGill University, applicants must meet several academic standing requirements. Candidates must have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.7 out of 4.0 or higher to qualify. Applicants should also demonstrate a strong record of academic excellence, as evidenced by grades, test scores, awards, and other recognitions.

In addition, candidates must hold or be pursuing an undergraduate degree from an accredited university. The degree must be granted by the time enrollment begins at McGill, typically by June/July prior to the master’s program start date in the fall semester. There is no minimum or maximum time limit since earning one’s undergraduate degree.

Finally, applicants must meet certain citizenship and residency requirements. Canadian citizens and permanent residents are eligible regardless of where they attend university. Applicants who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States are also eligible. International students attending Canadian or American universities can apply, provided they can obtain the necessary student visa to study full-time in Canada.

Application Process

The McCall MacBain Scholarship application is available online from June 1 to September 27, 2023 for the 2024-2025 academic year (source: https://www.mcgill.ca/gradapplicants/funding/external/mccall-macbain-scholarship). The application requires several components:

  • Online application form
  • Resume/CV
  • Transcripts
  • 3 reference letters
  • Personal statements

When completing the application, focus on highlighting your academic achievements, leadership experience, commitment to social impact, and how you meet the selection criteria. Illustrate your accomplishments with specific examples. Follow instructions closely and ensure your reference letters speak to your strengths (source: https://mccallmacbainscholars.org/apply/).

Start early, check carefully for errors, and ask mentors to review your drafts. Submit a polished, compelling application that makes a strong case for why you are an ideal McCall MacBain Scholar.

Selection Process

The selection process for the McCall MacBain Scholarships is highly competitive. According to the official website, less than 1% of applicants are selected as scholars each year (https://mccallmacbainscholars.org/apply/). The selection committee, comprising professors, administrators and alumni, evaluates applications based on the following criteria:

Academic Strength and Intellectual Curiosity: Applicants must demonstrate excellent academic achievement in undergraduate studies, including a strong GPA from a reputable university. The committee also looks for passionate learners who exhibit intellectual curiosity and potential for impact.

Leadership Potential and Selflessness: Leadership experiences, whether formal or informal, are valued. Applicants should showcase how they have positively influenced others. The committee favors candidates with integrity who strive to serve communities beyond themselves.

Respect for Diversity: Embracing diverse cultures and peoples is a core tenet of the scholarship. Applicants are assessed on their ability to bridge differences and enrich communities through diversity.

Commitment to Social Good: Scholars are change-makers devoted to improving society. The selection panel looks for demonstrated interest in social causes and a commitment to advancing human welfare.

Personal Suitability and Communication Skills: Scholars serve as ambassadors of McGill University. The committee evaluates applicants’ communication skills, personal qualities and overall fit for the role.

In summary, while academic excellence is crucial, the selection process emphasizes leadership, social conscience, communication abilities and overall suitability for the scholarship.

Requirements If Selected

Once awarded the McCall MacBain Scholarship, scholars must uphold certain requirements to maintain the prestigious award throughout their master’s degree program at McGill. These include:

Maintaining good academic standing – Scholars are expected to maintain a minimum B average throughout their graduate studies at McGill. Falling below this standard can result in the revocation of the scholarship.

Participation in enrichment activities – The McCall MacBain Scholarship aims to develop well-rounded leaders. Scholars are required to participate in enrichment activities organized by the university such as conferences, speaker events, community initiatives, and social gatherings with other scholars. This facilitates networking and peer learning.

Upholding the McGill Code of Conduct – As representatives of the scholarship, scholars must uphold integrity and ethical behavior as outlined in McGill’s Code of Conduct. Any violations can warrant disciplinary action or loss of the scholarship.

Adhering to these requirements ensures scholars fully benefit from the exceptional opportunity the McCall MacBain Scholarship presents, while also upholding the standards of excellence expected of recipients of this prestigious award.

Success Stories

Past recipients of the prestigious McCall MacBain Scholarship have gone on to achieve remarkable success in their careers and make significant contributions to society.

For example, Dr. Agnès Totschnig, was awarded the scholarship in 2013 to pursue a Master’s in Epidemiology. She went on to obtain her PhD in Epidemiology from McGill and is now an Assistant Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on improving maternal and child health globally.

Cameron Adams, a recipient in 2019, completed his Master’s in Urban Planning and is now a Senior Consultant at Deloitte, where he advises public and private sector organizations on strategies for sustainable economic growth and social impact.

These are just two examples of the outstanding graduates the program has produced, many of whom go on to leadership roles and make meaningful contributions in their fields. The scholarship provides a powerful launchpad for scholars to maximize their potential and create positive change in the world.

Why Apply for the McCall MacBain Scholarship?

The McCall MacBain Scholarship offers an unparalleled opportunity for outstanding students to pursue a fully funded master’s degree at McGill University. Here’s an overview of the key benefits:

The scholarship covers full tuition and fees for your chosen McGill master’s program. It also provides a generous $2,000 monthly stipend for living expenses. This allows scholars to focus on their studies and experiences at McGill without financial constraints.

McCall MacBain Scholars gain access to unique enrichment activities, conferences, speaker series and networking events. This gives scholars opportunities to expand their thinking, leadership skills and social impact capabilities.

The scholarship provides a powerful credential. As a recipient, you join an elite network of past scholars who have gone on to do great things in their careers and communities.

Here are some top tips for putting your best application forward:

  • Start early – Take time to craft a compelling application.
  • Follow instructions carefully – Pay attention to all requirements and deadlines.
  • Get feedback – Ask mentors to review your essays and resume.
  • Highlight achievements – Quantify results and impact where possible.
  • Customize for MacBain – Tailor your materials to show fit with the program’s values.

The McCall MacBain Scholarship represents an amazing pathway. With a focused application highlighting your merit and potential, you can open up this opportunity.


The McCall MacBain Scholarship is one of the most prestigious and generous awards in Canada for aspiring master’s students. As a fully-funded scholarship at McGill University, it provides outstanding financial support and a powerful platform for launching your graduate studies.

Although the application process is highly competitive, it’s well worth the effort for eligible students who are up for a challenge and committed to making a difference. By telling your story with passion, highlighting your academic achievements, and demonstrating your leadership ability, you can write a compelling application.

With thorough preparation, attention to detail, and a thoughtful approach, you can maximize your chances of becoming a McCall MacBain scholar. We encourage all ambitious students who meet the criteria not to be deterred, but rather to put your best foot forward. You might just find yourself embarking on a life-changing graduate experience as a recipient of this prestigious scholarship. We wish you the very best of luck!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *