About the program

The Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Programme, also known as the Laidlaw Scholars Programme, provides students with funding to pursue research in any area of interest at U of T, or anywhere in the world. 

New scholars will be conducting their research in two summer sessions (each no more than 6 weeks long) over two separate years (summer 2020 and 2021) and participating in a year-long leadership development program. The current scholar group will conclude their second summer of research in 2020 and will present their research findings in the Fall term of 2020.  

Overall, the program has three core elements:

  1. Research Project: ​Students propose a research topic with a research advisor who will supervise them. Students also have the opportunity to travel abroad if it suits their research project. 
  2. Leadership development and training: Students will be provided with leadership training to develop their problem-solving and communication skills. 
  3. Network building (for future opportunities):  Students will have the opportunity to work with staff and faculty at their University or Universities across the world to grow their career networks during and after their time with the Laidlaw Programme.


Lord Laidlaw of Rothiemay used his vision and commitment to create this program, which began at the University of Leeds and is now offered at 12 universities around the world. The long-term vision for the Laidlaw Scholarship is to create a wide-reaching and diverse international network of leaders who will reinvest their skills, knowledge and experience to help students, peers and colleagues.

For more information about the history and vision of the program, please visit the main Laidlaw Scholars Website


Funding Available research funding for Laidlaw Scholars
Eligibility Who can apply for this program?
Benefits Why participate? What are the benefits?
Application How to apply for the scholarship
Document guidelines Detailed guidelines on required application documentation
Important dates Information about deadlines, information sessions and more
Additional resources Find more information about this program on the Laidlaw Scholars website
Contact us Email Shraddha Prasad at laidlaw.scholars@utoronto.ca​


Up to twenty-five academically strong, motivated students from across all three U of T campuses are selected annually for this program to receive a research stipend of up to $5000 every summer or $10,000 (approximately) for the entire 12-week period of research undertaken over two summers.

Students are also eligible to apply for up to $3,500 in additional funds. $2500 can be applied to travel requirements for the program (flight, visa, health insurance, etc.) and $1000 can be applied to additional lab funding that cannot be covered by the main research amount. This additional fund covers both summers for each student. 


This program is open to first and second-year undergraduate students studying at the University of Toronto from all backgrounds and fields of study. For the 2019-2020 application year, the scholarship is available to students from all three U of T campuses. The program is not open to visiting students.

Applications to this program are reviewed by a number of people, including an expert in the field of research chosen. Applicants will be assessed for their passion, drive, enthusiasm and ambition, while also keeping in mind their academic background and achievements.


Students who participate in the program will: 

  • Work alongside leading researchers to develop their academic potential
  • Receive financial support over two consecutive summers, up to a value of $10,000
  • Receive mentoring from a specialist supervisor
  • Actively learn from participants and teams while managing projects
  • Develop transferable skills pertaining to decision-making, planning and communicating
  • Explore potential careers while building confidence and breadth of knowledge
  • Gain access to a network of like-minded peers across the University and beyond

The leadership program will focus on the importance of leadership skills, understanding teamwork and applying it to day-to-day challenges. The networking component allows students to form connections with faculty and staff from around the world. This group of like-minded, highly motivated peers and teachers will allow students to expand their worldview, help them develop skills and enhance their future employability.

At the end of the program, all scholars are required to write a final research paper outlining the findings of their work. All scholars will have the opportunity to present their research to faculty and staff from across the university at a symposium organized by the Laidlaw Scholars office.


The application form will be available on October 15, 2019 and students should begin working on it several weeks before the deadline of Monday, January 13, 2020 at 5 p.m. 

How to submit your application: 

  1. Read and follow the instructions available in the application guidelines attachment on how to prepare documents for upload as part of your application form. Coming soon!
  2. Go to the Laidlaw Scholarship Program application form (application will be available on October 15).
  3. Complete your basic application form. We recommend that students attend one of the information sessions regarding this scholarship program. Details on the information session dates are listed below.
  4. Submit the following application documents through the website, before the application due date: 
  • Basic application form (student information, contact information) 
  • Transcript Information (download/screenshot from ACORN and uploaded to the form)
  • Resume/CV (one page maximum) 
  • Personal Statement (600 Words or less) 
  • Research Proposal and budget (please read through the guidelines for the proper format to follow in the FAQs)
  • Research Advisor statement of support 
  • Academic Letter of Recommendation 

Note: Pay attention to the strict guidelines for each document (outlined in the application guidelines document below). 


Short-listed candidates for an interview will be contacted with further details 2-3 weeks after the final application deadline.

If selected as a member of the 2020 Laidlaw Scholars Cohort, you will be required to attend two leadership training sessions in the winter term. Please keep the following dates and times free.

  • Tuesday, March 17, 2020: Leadership Session 1, 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 28, 2020: Leadership Session 2, 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Document guidelines

Please download the 2019-2020 Laidlaw Scholars Application Guidelines for further details on each of the individual documents to complete for the application. Coming soon!

Important dates

October 15, 2019 – Application available 

UTSG Information Sessions

UTM Information Sessions

  • Thursday, October 24, 2019 – Information Session I (Location TBD) 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, November 6, 2019 – Information Session II (Location TBD) 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

UTSC Information Sessions

  • Tuesday, October 29, 2019 – Information Session I (Location TBD) 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Information Session II (Location TBD) 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

January 13, 2020 – Application DUE by 5 p.m.

February 10, 2020 to February 28, 2020 (tentative) – Laidlaw Scholars Interviews

Friday, March 6, 2020 – Candidates notified of acceptance 

Tuesday, March 17, 2020 – Leadership Session 1 (Centre for International Experience) 5:30 – 8 p.m.

March 18, 2020 to March 27, 2020 – Individual check-in meetings

Saturday, March 28, 2020 – Leadership Session 2 (Centre for International Experience) 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Summer 2020 – Research Summer I 

September 2020 to April 2021 – Leadership Program (schedule to be released soon) 

Summer 2021 – Research Summer II

Contact us

For any questions about the scholarship, or to set up a meeting to discuss the application, please contact the Laidlaw Scholars Programme Coordinator, Shraddha Prasad, at laidlaw.scholars@utoronto.ca.