How to Win the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship at the University of Toronto

As an internationally-minded student looking to study at a top university, you have likely come across the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship program at the University of Toronto. This prestigious award provides full tuition, books, incidental fees, and living expenses for the duration of your four-year undergraduate degree. Winning a Pearson Scholarship would be life-changing and open up a world of opportunity. However, with only 25 scholarships awarded per year and thousands of applicants, the competition is fierce. How can you stand out and make your application rise to the top? By crafting a compelling story, demonstrating strong leadership qualities, and highlighting your passion for learning, you can position yourself as an ideal Pearson Scholar. With careful preparation and by following the tips in this article, you will maximize your chances of becoming a recipient of this distinguished honor. The path to becoming a Pearson Scholar is challenging but rewarding, and with hard work and perseverance, you can achieve your goal of winning this prestigious award.

Overview of the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship

The prestigious Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship Program at the University of Toronto is offered to exceptional international students entering their first year of university. Valued at $50,000 CAD for four years, the Lester B. Pearson Scholarship covers tuition, books, incidental fees, and full residence support.

To be eligible, you must demonstrate outstanding academic achievement, creative and critical thinking skills, leadership qualities, and community engagement. Applicants should have an admissions average of 95% or higher and must be nominated by their school.

The selection committee evaluates applicants based on their admission grades, personal statements, letters of reference, and interviews. Successful candidates exhibit intellectual curiosity, global-mindedness, and strong communication abilities.

As a recipient, you will join a cohort of the top international students at the University of Toronto. You will have opportunities to participate in mentorship programs, attend speaker series, and network. The tight-knit community of Pearson Scholars goes on to become leaders in their fields across the globe.

The Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship is one of the most prestigious and generous undergraduate awards in Canada. If you wish to study at a world-class university and be part of an exclusive community of high-achieving students, apply for this competitive scholarship. You could be awarded up to $200,000 towards your University of Toronto education.

Eligibility Requirements and Criteria for the Pearson Scholarship

To be eligible for the prestigious Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship at the University of Toronto, you must meet several requirements:


You must be an international student who is not a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or refugee. You cannot hold dual citizenship with Canada.

Academic Standing

You must demonstrate outstanding academic achievement and potential. As a minimum, you must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 out of 4.0 or 85% or higher in your most recently completed year of study. Your school grades and curriculum rigor will be considered within the context of your country’s education system.

English Proficiency

You must meet the University’s English language proficiency requirements. Minimum scores are: TOEFL iBT 100, IELTS 7.0, PTE Academic 68.

Leadership and Impact

You must demonstrate exceptional leadership skills, creativity, innovation and community impact through extracurricular activities, volunteer work, entrepreneurship, awards, etc. Strong recommendations from teachers who can speak to your abilities and potential are required.

The Pearson Scholarship aims to attract and support outstanding students who show the potential to become leaders and change makers. If you meet all eligibility criteria and believe you have the skills, passion, and vision to be a Pearson Scholar, apply! This prestigious award can provide you with the means to study at a world-class university and gain experiences that will empower you to make a difference.

Tips for Crafting a Strong Pearson Scholarship Application

To craft a strong application for the prestigious Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship at the University of Toronto, follow these tips:

Focus on Academics

As an academic scholarship, your grades and test scores are important. Aim for a minimum 3.5 GPA or equivalent and high standardized test scores. Emphasize relevant advanced, honors or IB courses you have taken. Discuss any academic achievements or awards you have received to demonstrate your abilities.

Develop Your Essays

The essay questions allow you to highlight your accomplishments and share your story. Focus on one experience for each question and discuss what you learned or how you grew from it. Explain your future goals and how the University of Toronto can help you achieve them. Have others review and provide feedback on your essays before submitting.

Obtain Strong References

Ask teachers, counselors or mentors who know you well to write your letters of reference. Meet with them to discuss your application and goals so they can provide personalized and compelling letters of recommendation for you.

Apply Early

Submit all application materials, including references, transcripts and test scores, well before the deadline. Applying early, especially if you need an entry visa, ensures you have ample time to resolve any issues and increases your chances of receiving an offer of admission.

Visit Campus

If possible, visit the campus to get a feel for student life at the University of Toronto. You may be able to meet professors or students in departments you are interested in. Let the university know about your campus visit and your continued enthusiasm for attending in your application.

Following these tips will strengthen your application and increase the likelihood of being awarded this prestigious undergraduate scholarship. Best of luck!

READ ALSO: Studying in Canada: Choosing a school, college or university


With determination and a meticulously crafted application, you have an excellent chance of winning this prestigious scholarship. While the application process requires significant time and effort, the rewards of studying at a world-class university like the University of Toronto with generous funding are well worth it. Think of this as an investment in your future. Do not be intimidated by the competitive nature of the scholarship—if you follow the guidance, focus on your strengths, and convey your genuine passion for learning, you will stand out. Believe in yourself and your abilities, do not doubt your potential, and go after this opportunity with confidence. You have so much to offer. Now is the time to step forward, take a risk, and pursue your dreams. With hard work and perseverance, you can win the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship. You owe it to yourself to try.

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