Sports scholarships in Canada for international students
U Sports is the national sport governing body of university sport in Canada, comprising the majority of degree-granting universities in the country. Its equivalent body for organised sports at colleges in Canada is the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). Some institutions are members of both bodies for different sports.
The U Sports member institutions offer athletic scholarships known as Athletic Financial Awards (AFA); subject to minimum academic requirements. The AFA’s are capped and may not exceed the value of the tuition and compulsory fees for the student-athlete. Universities also may provide additional non-athletic awards including academic scholarships and needs-based grants for athletes in addition to this cap, provided the additional awards do not include athletic criteria. In 2008/2009 one in two U Sports athletes was receiving an athletic scholarship.
There are 56 member universities in U Sports. These 56 member universities are currently organised into the four following regional associations. In some of these sports, these associations are sometimes referred to as conferences. Atlantic University Sport (AUS), Canada West Universities Athletic Association (CW), Ontario University Athletics (OUA), Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ).
Am I eligible for a Canadian U Sports Scholarship?
For U Sports student-athletes entering their first year of university, they must maintain a minimum grade point average of 80% out of high school to qualify for prize money. If an athlete is unable to do so, they may be able to gain an athletic scholarship at the end of their first year if they acquire a 65% average or higher. Similarly, maintaining scholarship eligibility once in university is dependent on a 65% average at the beginning of each year. In Ontario, this magic number is slightly higher at 70%. Additionally, athletic performance is also a key factor that contributes to the amount of the scholarship money an athlete can receive. Generally, the faster the time, the greater the jump, or further the throw can result in a larger scholarship for you, but it is important to contact coaches and universities you are interested in to see how much you can be offered in their specific program.
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