SURA & SERA 2024 Competition

Department of Biology, University of Victoria





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Research is an important and enjoyable component of an undergraduate experience and can be a helpful guide in planning a career. The Faculty of Science administers a number of scholarships to enable undergraduate students to engage in research projects on campus under the supervision of a Member of Faculty (research-stream or teaching-stream) in the Departments of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Statistics, Physics and Astronomy, or the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences. An adjunct Member of Faculty in any of these academic units can be a co-supervisor.

A student submitting an application may be considered for any of the scholarships listed below, depending on their eligibility, but may only accept one of the awards offered. In accepting an award, a student holding the award must perform research under the supervision or co-supervision of a regular Member of the Faculty of Science at UVic. If co-supervised, both supervisors must be specified and sign the application. It is expected that undergraduate students holding an award would use the award to work full-time on a research project for a term of 14-16 consecutive weeks over one academic term. A student may take up the award in the Summer (May-Aug), Fall (Sep-Dec), or Winter (Jan-Apr) term, as agreed between the student and their supervisor. The awards are not intended to support a student performing research on a part-time basis, or for research performed outside the term during which the student is to be engaged in their research project.

To be eligible for an undergraduate award, at the time of application, a candidate must:

• be registered as a full-time student for a BSc degree in the Faculty of Science at the University of Victoria in the current Winter Session (Sept-April) and be in good standing;
• have completed at least 30 units of course credits toward a B.Sc. degree by the end of the Fall term prior to submitting an application;
• have a cumulative GPA of 6.0 or higher for all courses completed at the time of application.

SURA (Science Undergraduate Research Award)
A fund endowed by the estate of the late Eva Moody provides a number of research awards each year to undergraduate students, including one additional SURA for a self-declared Canadian or International Indigenous student. The award provides $4,000 from the Faculty of Science plus a minimum of $4,000 from the research supervisor.

SERA (Science Emerging Researcher Award)
An anonymous donor has provided funds for awards to students, with emphasis on supporting members of a group with historical and/or current barriers to equity, including but not limited to

•First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, and all other Indigenous peoples;
•members of groups that currently or historically experience discrimination due to race, ancestry, colour, religion and/or spiritual beliefs, or place of origin;
•persons with visible and/or invisible (physical and/or mental) disabilities;
•persons who identify as women; and
•persons of marginalized sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions.

Students will have shown potential as a scientist in their field as evidenced by a combination of academic accomplishments, extracurricular activities, 1) a letter of support by at least one STEM faculty member familiar with the student, and 2) a letter from the student discussing the barriers they have faced. Preference is given to students with intersecting identities. 

The award for undergraduate students provides $5,500 from the Faculty of Science plus a minimum of $3,500 from the research supervisor.


  • Students contact a potential supervisor to discuss their research interests.
  • Student and supervisor complete both parts of the application form, available from the supervisor.

No handwritten applications will be accepted. Student applicants should complete parts 1A and 1B, save the application on their computer and email the completed electronic form to their proposed supervisor. The supervisor should in turn complete part 2. The application must be signed by the student and the supervisor(s) before being submitted to