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Awards & Scholarships

The Department of English offers various awards and grants to support undergraduate and graduate education and recognize excellence in its programs. The awards celebrate the students' achievements and contributions to the English Department.

English Awards, Scholarships and Grants

English Essay Award

This annual award  ̶ worth $250  ̶  is given to the first- or second-year student who has written the best essay in an English course. The Award is available to students enrolled in either the BA English program, English double major programs or the English Option of the Arts and Contemporary Studies program. Essays are nominated by professors (with the student's pre-established approval) and vetted by the Awards Committee. Only one essay can win this award, although a second essay can be given honorable mention.

W.C. Chau Essay Award

Supported by the generous donation of past English faculty member, W.C. Chau, this annual award   ̶  worth $250   ̶  is given to the third- or fourth-year student who has written the best essay in an English course. The Award is available to students enrolled in either the BA English program, English double major programs or the English Option of the Arts and Contemporary Studies program. Essays are nominated by professors (with the student's pre-established approval) and vetted by the Awards Committee. Only one essay can win this award, although a second essay can be given honorable mention. The winning essay will be published on the department website.

Creative Writing Award

This annual award   ̶  worth $250   ̶  is given to the undergraduate student who has produced the most outstanding sample of creative writing in any genre (5-10 pages, double spaced) in an English course. The Award is available to students enrolled in either the BA English program, English double major programs or the English Option of the Arts and Contemporary Studies program. Submissions are made by individual students by no later than April 30 and vetted by the Creative Writing Committee.  There can be only one submission per student. Only one submission can win this award, although a second submission can be given honorable mention. The winning submission will be considered for publication in the White Wall Review.

Literary Digital Media Award

In recognition that English undergraduate and graduate courses sometimes include scholarly and creative digital assignments, this annual award—worth $250—is given to an outstanding English course project that explores, through digital media, ideas about literature from a creative and/or critical perspective. Eligible works might include, but are not limited to: curated online exhibits; interactive editions of literary texts; hypertexts; interactive fictions; digital poetry; or story-rich computer games. Students enrolled in the BA English, English double major programs, the English Option of the Arts and Contemporary Studies program or the Literatures of Modernity MA program are eligible to self-nominate or be nominated by a faculty member for this award.

Download Application Form

This award is funded by the Department of English, the Literatures of Modernity MA program, and the Centre for Digital Humanities.

BA English Student Life Award

This annual award   ̶  worth $500   ̶  celebrates the achievements of one student who has made an outstanding contribution to the life, activities, and endeavours of the English department. The Award is available to students enrolled in the BA English program. Each student must be nominated by at least one professor and at least one student enrolled in the BA English program (with the nominee’s pre-established approval). Individuals cannot self-nominate. The nominations are adjudicated by the Awards Committee, in consultation with the Undergraduate Director.

BA English Academic Achievement Scholarships

These four annual scholarships   ̶  worth $500 each   ̶  are granted to the students who attained the highest Grade Point Average across all courses within a given year, with one scholarship designated for a student in each of the first, second, third, and fourth years of the program. The scholarship is available to students enrolled in the BA English or English double major programs (with a home program of English). To be eligible, the student must have completed at least two ENG courses in that academic year, and at least 4 courses in each of the fall and winter terms. In the case of a tie, the scholarship amount will be divided among the scholarship winners.

Discovery Grant

Undergraduate and graduate students may apply for a grant of up to $500 in support of forthcoming scholarly/community/publishing projects (but not travel expenses). Grants are available to students enrolled in the BA English program, the English Option of the Arts and Contemporary Studies program, English double major programs and the MA program in Literatures of Modernity. Applications with budgets can be submitted for consideration twice per academic year – November 30 and March 1 (or, should the date fall on a weekend or holiday, on the next Ryerson business day).  A student can serve as the head applicant on only one application per academic year. Grants will be adjudicated by the Awards Committee, in consultation with the Undergraduate and Graduate Directors and Department Chair on an individual basis. The Department will support as many worthy applications as annual budget permits.

MA English Award for Academic Excellence

$500 is awarded annually to the student who attained the highest Grade Point Average in a given year in the Literatures of Modernity program

Alumni Award for Best Essay

This annual award - worth $200 - is given to the graduating MA student who has written the best essay in a Literatures of Modernity course. Essays are nominated by professors (with the student's pre-established approval) and vetted by an Awards Committee.

Awards and Scholarships Beyond the Department of English

Beyond the Department of English, Ryerson University and external organizations offer a range of scholarships and awards at the undergraduate and graduate level.

At the undergraduate level, the Faculty of Arts offers a number of awards.  

At the graduate level, information on a range of scholarships, awards and other funding is provided by the Yeates School of Graduate Studies.

Funding for graduate travel and other professional development activities can be obtained through the Ryerson Student's Union Graduate Travel Grant, the Ryerson Graduate Student Travel Fund, and the International Conference and Research Suport Fund. Members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Locals can apply to the Teaching Assistant/Grading Assistant Fund and the Professional Development Fund, for professional development, travel, and other costs.