IDRC contribution expands scope and reach of Queen Elizabeth Scholars program

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(OTTAWA, ON) June 2, 2016 – A new $10 million contribution from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) is helping to expand the scope and reach of the Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships program. The funding from IDRC will offer new learning opportunities for doctoral, post-doctoral and early career researchers from low- and middle-income countries, as well as in Canada, seeking to enrich their academic, professional and cross-cultural experiences.

The Queen Elizabeth Scholars program (QES) is a collaborative initiative led by the Rideau Hall Foundation, Community Foundations of Canada and Universities Canada, with contributions from the Government of Canada, Canadian universities, and a wide range of partners from all sectors. Launched in 2014, the QES program has engaged 37 universities in every Canadian province and 85% of the Commonwealth. The first phase of the program will offer approximately 2,000 scholarships over four years and build a community of young leaders through a global exchange of talent.

The expansion of the QES program will provide a unique two-way exchange: researchers in low- and middle-income countries will have greater access to the advanced education, training and mentorship that are vital to cutting-edge innovation; and doctoral students and early career researchers in Canada will gain more exposure to the international experience they need to become leaders in globally competitive work environments. Another distinctive feature of the program will be direct opportunities for recipients to engage with key stakeholders in local development, including industry.

The QES program targets a 50 per cent gender balance of female and male students and ensures that gender equality is incorporated into all aspects of project activities, reporting and planning.

“IDRC is delighted to join the Rideau Hall Foundation, Community Foundations of Canada and Universities Canada in supporting the leaders of tomorrow who will develop solutions to increasingly complex national and global challenges,” said Jean Lebel, President, IDRC. “Through their applied research, innovations and collaboration, they will contribute to stronger economies, more prosperous societies and large-scale positive change.”

”IDRC’s substantial support is great news for the Queen Elizabeth Scholars program,” said Scott Haldane, President and CEO of the Rideau Hall Foundation. ”This contribution helps build momentum and attract additional resources that will enable even more students to experience this unique global talent exchange.”

“The Queen Elizabeth Scholars program offers young people invaluable international study and research experiences that will benefit them throughout their careers and lives,” said Paul Davidson, President of Universities Canada. “This significant contribution from IDRC will help develop the next generation of innovative leaders and community builders in Canada and around the world.”

“By providing opportunities for young scholars to experience different cultures and learn from one another through this global exchange of talent, we’re creating the conditions for our communities and countries to be more welcoming and inclusive,” said Ian Bird, President, Community Foundations of Canada. “IDRC’s contribution will give the Queen Elizabeth Scholars program an even greater lift, creating new opportunities for young leaders to make a lasting impact at home and abroad.”

IDRC contribution expands scope and reach of QES program Photo credit: MCpl Vincent Carbonneau, Rideau Hall ©OSGG (2016)

Jean Lebel and Scott Haldane discussing with Queen Elizabeth Scholars.

Photo: MCpl Vincent Carbonneau, Rideau Hall ©OSGG (2016)


About International Development Research Centre

Part of Canada’s foreign affairs and development efforts, IDRC invests in knowledge, innovation, and solutions to improve lives and livelihoods in the developing world. Bringing together the right partners around opportunities for impact, IDRC builds leaders for today and tomorrow and helps drive large-scale positive change. Learn more at

About Queen Elizabeth Scholars program

The Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships program aims to activate a dynamic community of young global leaders across Canada and around the world to create lasting impacts both at home and abroad through cross-cultural exchanges encompassing international education, discovery and inquiry, and professional experiences. To learn more visit,

About Rideau Hall Foundation

The Rideau Hall Foundation gathers, aligns and catalyzes ideas, people and resources to move the Canadian spirit and our shared aspirations forward. As an independent, non-political charity, the Foundation works closely with the Governor General and many external partners to support initiatives that build our identity, build capacity and promote the advancement of a caring nation through learning, leadership, innovation and giving initiatives. To learn more about its initiatives, visit

About Universities Canada

Universities Canada is the voice of Canada’s universities at home and abroad, representing the interests of 97 Canadian public and private not-for-profit universities. To learn more visit

About Community Foundations of Canada

Community Foundations of Canada is the national network for Canada’s 191 community foundations which help Canadians invest in building strong and resilient places to live, work, and play. To learn more visit


Media Contacts:

International Development Research Centre
Jocelyn Sweet
Media Relations
Tel: (613) 696-2117
Twitter: @IDRC_CDRI

Rideau Hall Foundation
Pascale Montminy
Portfolio Manager
Tel: (613) 914-0501
Twitter: @QEScholars

Universities Canada
Helen Murphy
Director, Communications
Tel: (613) 563-3961 ext. 238
Twitter: @UnivCan

Community Foundations of Canada
David Venn
Director of Communications
Tel: (613) 236-2664 ext. 302
Twitter: @CommFdnsCanada

Queen Elizabeth scholars to participate in African health improvement projects

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This article was originally posted by the University of Calgary on May 6, 2016 and is reposted with permission.

By Gillian Galambos

Excitement and nerves fill the room as the latest University of Calgary Queen Elizabeth scholars prepare to embark on an experience of a lifetime this summer.

Kevin Capuno, Sydney Krill, Sahar Khajeali and Zeeyaan Somani are the most recent recipients of the prestigious Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship (QES). All undergraduate students from the faculties of arts and nursing, they are looking forward to having the opportunity to immerse themselves in local culture and to make a real difference in the communities they’ll be working in.

The objective of the QES program is to activate a dynamic community of young global leaders across the Commonwealth countries to create lasting impact — both locally and globally — through cross-cultural exchanges. Established in 2014, the University of Calgary sent the first group of Queen Elizabeth scholars abroad last year. The program continues to grow with the introduction of a new partnership with Aga Khan University in Uganda. These programs complement the internship opportunities available through the Study Abroad office thanks to our long-standing partnerships in the region.

Work in Africa will focus on maternal health, disabilities

Capuno and Krill are students in the Faculty of Arts, both taking combined degrees with a focus on development. They are headed to Ghana along with four other University of Calgary students funded by University of Calgary International to work with the Community Based Rehabilitation Program (CBR). They will be travelling to different rural field offices to work on improving the lives of those with disabilities. Khajeali and Somani are both in the Faculty of Nursing and are the first students to do an exchange with Aga Khan University. They’ll be working in a hospital focusing on maternal health in a developing country.

“I just want to be a sponge,” says Somani, when asked what she hopes to achieve during her internship. “I want to be immersed in the culture and learn everything I can, while developing relationships with the locals so I can relate to them on a more personal level.”

An opportunity to globalize degrees

The QES program closely aligns with the University of Calgary’s International Strategy and will have significant impact in Canada and around the world in creating a new global network of scholars. The QES program is managed through a unique partnership of Universities Canada, the Rideau Hall Foundation (RHF), Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) and Canadian universities. It’s made possible with financial support from the Government of Canada, provincial governments and the private sector.

“This program is a great opportunity for our students to gain international development experience and share knowledge between countries and institutions,” says Janaka Ruwanpura, vice-provost (international). “It really enables our students to become global citizens.”

The students will be overseas for 90 days completing their internships along with a self-directed course for academic credit. When they return home, they’ll be working to educate the campus community on their experiences and how other students can get involved.

Putting classroom theory into practice

“I want to empower people to make change,” says Krill. “I’m hoping that through this experience, I’ll learn practical skills in the field that I can bring back and use to teach others how to make the world a better place.”

Learn more about the QES program and apply for various study abroad opportunities.

Windsor Star Article: Queen Elizabeth II Scholars Program

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This article was originally posted in the Windsor Star on May 7, 2016 and is reposted with permission.

The Queen Elizabeth II Scholars (QES) Program is an innovative program for students with an interest in palliative care, and is managed through a valuable partnership between Universities Canada, the Rideau Hall Foundation (RHF), Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) and Canadian universities.

Samantha Kellam, a Masters student at the University of Windsor, was the first recipient of the scholarship and journeyed to England in January of this year to further her studies at Keele University. While at Keele, she has worked at two hospices – at Donna Louise Children’s Hospice and at Douglas Macmillan Hospice.

“Samantha was one of our undergrad students and she was also a Lancer,” says Dr. Kathy Pfa , an assistant professor in the Faculty of Nursing. “When she applied for this, it was clear she was the most stellar.”

Kellam committed to at least 90 days – a full semester – at Keele. The area of research she decided to undertake was in reflection, a practice commonly exercised in England but less frequently here.

“The health care team in hospice there fully reflect at the end of their work day,” explains assistant professor Dr. Laurie Freeman-Gibb. “She’s studying the benefi ts of reflection – how that impacts a team, or the individual.

“That’s typically not something we see here in Canada, and she wants to understand that. That’s the benefit of these programs – to learn from them what they do there that we don’t do here, and vice versa. It’s all about improving care.”

Students interested in applying for a scholarship to Keele University in England must meet the following requirements: scholars must enrolled in a Master’s or doctoral program in a health science or related field at the University of Windsor, while interns must be enrolled in an Honours undergraduate health science program at the University of Windsor and must travel to Keele University in the spring or summer between the third and fourth year of their undergraduate program. All applicants must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents and 35 years of age or under at the time of application.

All other requirements can be found at: http://www.uwindsor. ca/nursing/386/queen-elizabeth-ii-scholars-program For more information, please contact: · Dr. Kathy Pfa –519.253.3000, x4977 or kpfa @uwindsor. ca, or · Dr. Laurie Freeman-Gibb –519.253.3000, x2278 or ILLUS: / Samantha Kellam; / Dr. Kathy Pfaff; / Dr. Laurie Freeman-Gibb;

The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships Program – Spring 2016 Update

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Photo from the Spring 2016 update

By mobilizing a community of young, dynamic Canadians to study abroad and by supporting students from other countries to attend Canadian universities, the Queen Elizabeth Scholars program is having significant impacts in Canada and around the world and creating a new global network of scholars. It is a worthy tribute to Her Majesty, who was pleased to lend her name to the program.

Queen Elizabeth Scholars – Spring 2016 Update

UVic student heads to Australia on first Indigenous co-op exchange

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Posted on September 8, 2015

By: UVic’s Community News Source

When UVic student Kimberly Hanton packed her bags for her work term in Australia last month, she carried words of encouragement from the local Indigenous Elders. Hanton recently embarked on the university’s first Indigenous co-op exchange after attending a departure ceremony at First Peoples House in her honour.

This unique co-op exchange saw Hanton travel to the University of Newcastle in Australia in August, while UVic will welcome Australian Indigenous student Cristal Walters to campus this fall.

Hanton, an Indigenous student studying political science, will be working with Australia’s leading Aboriginal historian, as well as contributing to the University of Newcastle’s Global Indigenous and Diaspora Research Studies Centre team. Walters will take part in the LE,NONET program, take some Indigenous Studies courses and complete a multi-week internship in Victoria.

“I am excited and greatly thankful for this upcoming passage of my life,” says Hanton. “I hope that I will make a positive difference with my work and will keep close the words of encouragement from the Elders. Thanks to their blessings, I certainly know I will be safe on my journey.”

Both students will be supported by local Indigenous Elders and will participate in cultural ceremonies that will protect them on their travels and keep them connected to their Indigenous homeland. Hanton was guided by Elders May Sam, Skip Sam and Skip Dick during a departure ceremony at First Peoples House on Aug. 19, while Walters will be given a traditional welcome to the local Lekwungen territory and the opportunity to learn about the culture and protocols of the Coast Salish Peoples when she arrives in September.

This exchange program was established through the CANCOM-COOP project, as a result of funding from the Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship program. UVic’s Co-operative Education Program and Career Services received the funding in March.

“It’s a unique initiative, as the students will support each other during their exchanges and will spend time working together on a community engagement initiative here in Canada when Kimberly returns to campus,” says Dr. Norah McRae, executive director of UVic’s Co-operative Education Program and Career Services.

“This is a tremendous opportunity to share knowledge and to connect Indigenous students from Canada with other Indigenous communities across the world.”


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Posted on May 22, 2015

By: Dal News

They’re off to see the world.

Dal’s first outgoing Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholars are departing this month to undertake internships in Uganda, Tanzania and the Caribbean. They represent the inaugural class of the new program, designed to develop a new generation of community leaders and academics with bright and creative minds and a commitment to bettering their country.  The program will also bring students from the Caribbean and Uganda to take graduate programs at Dalhousie.

A global index of wellbeing one goal of new Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships

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Posted on: March 27, 2015

By:  Daily Exchange

Two researchers from the University of Waterloo recently received funding for Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships. The scholarship funding, awarded by Rideau Hall Foundation, Community Foundations of Canada and Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, allows Canadian students at the undergraduate and graduate levels to participate in internships or academic study for periods of three months to one year in another Commonwealth country.