Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation
|Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation|
|Headquarters||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Official languages||English, French|
|Executive Director||Franca Gucciardi|
The Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation (CMSF) is a national charitable organization awarding scholarships for students entering university or community college in Canada. Founded in Toronto in 1988, it runs the Loran Scholar program, the country's largest independent undergraduate merit award.
Loran Scholar program
The Loran Scholar program selects 30 students each year for an undergraduate scholarship valued at up to $80,000. It has been active since 1990, and is administered by CMSF.
The scholarship is tenable at 25 public universities throughout Canada; however, the lower level awards (provincial awards and finalist awards) can be used at any public Canadian university or college. Fifteen Loran Scholars have gone on to win Rhodes Scholarships. The Loran Scholar program consists of living stipends, a matching tuition waiver, summer enrichment funding, and mentoring over four years of study.
Since the award was established in 1990, the foundation has selected more than 500 Loran Scholars. Past Loran Scholars include Lucas Skoczkowski  , founder and CEO of Redknee, Graham Fox , president and CEO of the Institute for Research on Public Policy and Diane Nalini de Kerckhove, a jazz musician and physicist.
The Loran Scholar selection process is rigorous. The selection process is as follows:
- Approximately 2,000 nominees come as sponsored candidates, with endorsements from their schools. Each secondary school can sponsor up to three students for the Loran Award. Evaluations are made by 30 Area Committees in 21 centres, from St. John's to Victoria, and then as many as 300 semifinalists, or approximately 10 candidates, are chosen for Area regional interviews. 50-60 candidates are then invited to attend National Selections in Toronto.
- Approximately 1,800 candidates from across Canada come through the Direct Pool as self-nominated candidates. The 12-member National Assessment Panel sits during December and January and evaluates the application of each candidate, and telephone interviews are conducted with semi-finalists. 15-25 candidates are then invited to attend National Selections in Toronto.
- 75 finalists are chosen from across Canada and flown to Toronto for National Selections.
- Up to 30 candidates are selected as Loran Scholars.
Several scholarships are awarded by the Foundation.
- $80,000 Loran Scholar program. 30 available.
- $3,000 Loran Scholar Finalist Award, offered to all finalists who attend National Selections but are not selected as Loran scholars. 42 available.
- $2,000 Loran Scholar Provincial Award, offered by regional committees outstanding semi-finalists who are not asked to attend National Selections. 40 available.
- Honour Citation, granted to students who distinguish themselves at regional interviews but are not offered any monetary awards.
- Semi-Finalist Certificate, issued to students selected for a regional interview.
Loran Scholars are selected on the basis of character, service and leadership potential.
The Loran Scholar program is valued at up to $80,000 and has three main financial components:
- The institution at which the scholar chooses to study grants a tuition waiver up to $9,000 per annum.
- As of 2012, the Award offers an $9,000 living stipend per annum.
- Scholars are awarded $8,500 for three summer enrichment experiences.[clarification needed]
Loran Scholars may study at the following universities in Canada:
One of the many things that makes the Loran Scholar program unique is the mentorship program, where each Loran Scholar is paired with a mentor who is in their field of academic interest. Furthermore, CMSF offers funding, up to $8,500 each summer, for three summer experiences:
- The Enterprise Summer
- The Personal and Community Development Summer
- The Public Policy Summer
W. Garfield Weston Award
The Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation previously administered the W. Garfield Weston Award for outstanding college-bound students in Canada. Established in 1999 with the support of the W. Garfield Weston Foundation, it awards up to 25 scholarships to entering college students, and up to 25 scholarships to upper-year college students.
- Morehead Scholarship (oldest merit-based undergraduate scholarship in the United States)
- Canada Millennium Scholarship (Canadian equivalent of US National Merit Scholarship program, awarded to ~2000 students every year, now defunct)
- "Loran Scholar program". Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
- "2013 Annual Report". Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
- "Lucas Skoczkowski: Executive Profile & Biography - Business Week". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
- "Graham Fox » Institute for Research on Public Policy". Institute for Research on Public Policy. Retrieved 2014-03-01.
- "Selection Process". Canadian Merit Scholarship Foundation. Retrieved 2010-04-15.