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How I Won A $4,000 Scholarship for Grad School

How I Won A $4,000 Scholarship for Grad School main image

Qualifying for a scholarship or bursary to cover the costs of attending university is every student’s dream. Often, this means filling out never-ending application forms, proving your eligibility for financial support or taking additional tests.

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Not every scholarship requires this much effort though. At a recent QS World Grad School Tour event in Canada, one lucky student was picked at random from the attendees to receive a whopping $4,000 scholarship.

That fortunate student was Amy Yu from the University of Toronto. After the shock had worn off, we got in touch to speak to Amy about her win and what she plans to do next.

Hi Amy, congratulations! How does it feel to have won a $4,000 scholarship?

Hi! I was shocked at first. I actually Googled the person who emailed me to check they were legitimate. Once I realized it was true, I was astonished and elated. I plan to study an MI in UX Design at the University of Toronto’s iSchool, so the $4,000 will make a sizeable dent in the grad school fees.

You’re studying at Toronto currently. How are you finding it?

Yes, I’m currently studying a double major in Neuroscience and Animal Psychology. It’s been hard work, but also thrilling and rewarding. My most memorable moments have definitely been the times when I performed animal and brain dissections or worked with cadavers.

These hands-on learning experiences have been excellent in helping me form an accurate 3D anatomical image of the body and have allowed me to appreciate how complex our bodies are. When I dissected a brain, it was awe-inspiring to know that I was holding in my hands all of an individual’s experiences and memories.

Wow. I think I’m far too squeamish to be holding a brain any time soon. So, how did you get from dissecting brains to attending the QS World Grad School Tour?

I heard about the event through the Student Life Network (SLN) and thought it would be useful to explore graduate programs and universities of which I might not have been aware. I was mostly looking forward to learning more about graduate programs offered abroad as well as within Canada. Also, it was a chance to see the inside of the One King West Hotel, which is stunning.

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Were you still making up your mind about where to study next then?

Yes, I hadn’t even decided if graduate school would be the right path for me. I spoke to a representative at the University of Toronto – IMI booth, and they were very helpful. They offered advice on the paths I could take after finishing my undergraduate degree, what I should consider when choosing a grad school and gave some insights into what grad school life can be like. It really gave me a better understanding of the options ahead of me.

Was there anything about the event which surprised you?

I was pleasantly surprised by the vast scope of universities there because I didn’t think there’d be so many international universities in attendance. I was also pleased to learn about the various scholarships that are available through QS. It inspired hope that the financial aspect of graduate school could be less daunting.

So, you’d recommend attending the QS World Grad School Tour to other students?

Definitely. I wish I’d known how helpful the event would be earlier, as I could have gone to the summer Grad School Tour event too. I’d advise anyone who goes to an event like this to speak to lots of different schools, not just the ones you were already planning to see. By speaking to a more diverse group of people, you’ll pick up more information and advice which will help you in the decision-making process.

Amy Yu was attending the QS World Grad School Tour, an event run in partnership with the Student Life Network, a national community of high school, university and college students from across Canada.

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Written by Craig OCallaghan
As editor of TopUniversities.com, Craig oversees the site's editorial content and network of student contributors. He also plays a key editorial role in the publication of several guides and reports, including the QS Top Grad School Guide.

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