Lester B. Pearson Scholarship
The Lester B. Pearson International Scholarships at the University of Toronto provide an unparalleled opportunity for outstanding international students to study at one of the world’s best universities in one of the world’s most multicultural cities.
Awarded annually, this is U of T’s most prestigious and competitive scholarship for international students from around the world, including international students studying at Canadian high schools. The scholarship program is intended to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and creativity, and who are recognized as leaders within their school, emphasizing their future potential to contribute positively to the global community.
The Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship applications are managed by Enrollment Services and all questions should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. For details of how to apply to this scholarship, please visit: future.utoronto.ca/pearson/about/
The Pearson Program Office housed within the Centre for International Experience (CIE) offers different enrichment and support programs for Pearson Scholars currently studying at U of T.
Pearson Welcome Events
In September every year, a series of events are organized to welcome incoming Year 1 Pearson Scholars to U of T.
These events include:
- a Pearson Orientation,
- a team building activity, as well as
- a Pearson Welcome Reception attended by the U of T President.
One-on-One Check-in Meetings
The Pearson Program Office advises all Pearson Scholars at U of T throughout their enrolment. Each Pearson Scholar is also assigned to an advisor on their campus of study for their four years at U of T.
The Pearson Advisors conduct one-on-one check-in meetings with all Pearson Scholars each semester to support their plans at U of T and to help them navigate different resources on campus.
Pearson Peer Mentorship Program
Year 1 Pearson Scholars are assigned upper-year Pearson Scholars as their mentors.
Peer Mentors meet regularly with their Peer Mentees during the scholars’ first year at U of T and share their own experiences of the first year transition with their Mentees.
Pearson Faculty Mentorship Program
In their second year of study at U of T, each Pearson Scholar is matched with a U of T Faculty Mentor.
Faculty Mentors are able to advise Pearson Scholars on their academic plan as well as other opportunities on and off campus.
Pearson Enrichment Activities
The Pearson Program Office organizes Enrichment Activities on different themes such as Leadership, Career Exploration, Alumni Networking, Graduate School Applications, Entrepreneurship etc. to support the development of the Pearson Scholars.
The Pearson Social Committee, consisting of 9 Pearson Scholars, also plan monthly social events for the Pearson Community.
Pearson Leadership and Enrichment Certificate
The Pearson Leadership and Enrichment Certificate Program is created to record all extracurricular activities that each Pearson Scholar has participated in during their four years at U of T.
Pearson Scholars who have completed all requirements of the program will be awarded the Enrichment Certificate at the end of their four years at U of T.
Current Pearson Scholars
The profiles of the Pearson Scholars studying at the University of Toronto can be found here:
2020 Pearson Scholar
Niharika came up with the idea of teaching guided painting sessions to deepen the impact she could make by just spreading her passion for visual art. By teaching art to seniors who may not have painted since their school days, she hopes to demonstrate that it’s never too late to learn something new, challenging ageism and combating society’s negative perception of the elderly. Seeing the healing and joy that she was able to spread in nursing homes and hospitals by simply sharing her love for art, Niharika realized that this was a very novel and fulfilling approach to volunteering that she strongly felt other students should experience. She believes that anyone can positively impact the community around them by integrating their personal talents and hobbies into helping others.
This is the link for the TEDx talk.
Andi Darell Alhakim
2018 Pearson Scholar
Andi Darell Alhakim is a fourth-year Pearson Scholar reading politics, socio-legal philosophy, and transnational studies. Within the Urban Leaders Fellowship, which awards funding for community-based urban projects advancing sustainable development, Andi Darell utilised GIS spatial tools to study the alignment between evictions and their policy rationales of flood mitigation in a Southeast Asian capital. The project, titled “The Disappearing Face of Compassion: Legacy of Forced Evictions of Urban Riverbank Slums,” now extends through Rekonsep, a local initiative he co-founded with engineering students from Penn State and Bandung Institute of Technology, as an interdisciplinary hub that communicates human stories impacted by urban relocation through mapping and visualisation pieces. Andi Darell’s symposium, presentation, profile interview, and project report are accessible online.
2019 Pearson Scholar
Rohan is a 3rd-year student specializing in Quantitative Finance and Statistics at UofT. He is highly involved in the student community having held several positions such as Student Ambassador, Teaching Assistant and several clubs positions. During the pandemic, he also founded a campus club called ‘Sustainable Innovation Group’ or ‘SIG.’ His vision is to provide a collaborative environment for youth to create meaningful social change across the UofT community. Rohan started SIG from a collective realization of the importance of sustainability in our business ecosystem. Through his club, students are given the opportunity to learn about relevant topics such as Sustainable Financing, Social Entrepreneurship, CSR and much more. SIG has also created an online portal for the UofT community to access sustainability-related articles, job postings, volunteer opportunities and seed funding competitions in one comprehensive platform. Rohan hopes to bring a positive impact by making today’s students embrace sustainability to become tomorrow’s responsible business leaders.
Learn more about SIG here.
2021 Pearson Scholar
Maansi is one of the 20 student winners of this year’s Cansbridge Fellowship, which provides its fellows with a holistic experience, consisting of 3 parts: a one-week bootcamp in Silicon Valley (British Columbia this year), a $10,000 stipend to pursue an internship in Asia, and a life-long network of Cansbridge fellows.
2018 Pearson Scholar
Pearson Scholar, Angad Arneja, is a Rotman Commerce Program graduate. He is a Co-Founder at WOMBO, which is the fastest growing consumer app in Canadian history with 60 million+ downloads within 4 months of launch.
WOMBO recently raised a $6-million seed round and proud to have investors, such as Ashton Kutcher supporting the company. More about WOMBO can be found here The Globe and Mail, The Verge, The Guardian, Bloomberg and Business Insider.
“Studying at UofT was critical to my entrepreneurial success. This is because UofT is a great place to meet intelligent ambitious students from diverse backgrounds. While at Trinity College, I made several friends who I collaborated with on podcasts, apps and websites. WOMBO was one of these projects. I am incredibly grateful to UofT for giving me the chance to study in Toronto as a Lester B. Pearson Scholar.
More than the financial benefits, I am ever so grateful for the network of support system that has been established for me through the Pearson program. This has made my journey in Fall semester and transition to Canada ever so smooth. I look forward to receiving a similar level of support throughout the Winter semester and beyond.Ahnaf Rahman (2021 Pearson Scholar)
The Pearson International Scholarship has not only given me opportunity, but a sense of purpose. I have been able to access higher education in a truly unique way, within a community that has supported me in cultivating feelings of both belonging and passion. I found fulfilment in my academic pursuits while also feeling truly cared for and valued as an individual within the program. I ultimately have been able to occupy space on a deeply metaphoric level that fills me with a lust for life and has garnered the energy necessary for me to move forward – academically, professionally, and personally.Kengu Latoya Black (2018 Scholar)
From exciting networking and social events to personal meetings with professor-advisor in my field, from mentorship opportunities to supporting conversations with program coordinators, I benefited a lot from being part of Pearson Scholars community. I believe I could fully realize myself academically with the immense support from Pearson Scholarship, which took away all the worries in terms of finding a place to live and cooking, providing me with a comfortable residence space which became my second home for four years and which significantly enhanced my student life experience. I always felt cared for through bi-annual meetings with Tara, Flo and Shraddha.Ksenia Meteleva, 2017 Scholar
The Pearson scholarship program has dramatically changed my life for the better, opening up a myriad of opportunities; Be it paving a way for me to study at a University I dreamt of for many years, or to cultivate friendships that will last a lifetime, or the vivid experiences and hands-on knowledge gained over the years. For all this and more, I will be forever grateful, seeking to give back to the community and those around me in a meaningful way, that I may, now and always, live up to the name, expectations and motto of such a life-changing scholarship.Emilia Solomon, 2017 Scholar
The Pearson Scholarship provided me with the unique opportunity to grow and flourish at UofT. I was introduced to scholars from all over the world whose worldviews I had never encountered before. The program created a support network made of scholars and staff who took care of my wellbeing throughout my journey in university. I was given the flexibility to choose my own academic path and encouraged to excel in accordance with my own needs.Leonardo Pinna Cosenza, 2017 Scholar
The Pearson Scholarship really changed my university experience for me. It’s often tough to navigate through new courses and an unfamiliar environment, but the support I received from my advisors was incredible. At every step of the way, I was encouraged to step out of my comfort zone and find new avenues for self-development. Whenever I needed help, someone was there to guide me in every way I needed. There’s also lots of fun events to get to meet new people and socialise!Maheen Khan, 2017 Scholar
Upcoming event: Annual Pearson Conference 2023
Sign up here.
CELEBRATING THE GRADUATING CLASS OF PEARSON SCHOLARS (SUMMER 2022)
U of T honours the second cohort of Lester B. Pearson International Scholars to complete their studies.
The second cohort of Lester B. Pearson International Scholars to graduate from the University of Toronto was celebrated at a June 14 reception at the Faculty Club. Pearson Scholars hold the University’s most prestigious and competitive international scholarships, awarded each year to outstanding students from around the world.
To read about the event, please click here.
Welcoming the 2021 Lester B. Pearson Scholars to the University (Fall 2021)
The Pearson Program Office recently held a recent virtual reception that welcomed the 36 scholarship recipients to the university.
U of T President Meric Gertler said the event has become a highlight since the “Pearson scholars embody so clearly the distinctive strengths and values” of the university.
The scholarships are considered U of T’s most prestigious and competitive scholarship for international students – awarded to those who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and who are recognized as leaders within their high school. This year’s recipients were chosen from a total of 1,761 applicants.
To read about the event, please click here.