University of Toronto Excellence Awards (UTEAs)

Application period opens: March 4, 2024 

Deadline: March 22, 2024, 11:59 p.m. 

First-round offers by: March 26, 2024

Number of awards available: 9

Duration: 14 full weeks, falling between May 1–August 30

Value: $7,500 ($5,250 with minimum research supervisor top-up of $2,250) 

Award duration dates

The award period will begin no earlier than May 1, 2024, and end no later than August 30, 2024, totalling 14 full weeks during the summer term.

Note: If you are not selected in the first round, your name will be added to a waiting list in case any award becomes available. You may not receive any communication unless you are offered an award.  

If you have questions about UTEAs, email or call 416-978-3145. 


The University of Toronto Excellence Awards (UTEAs) are fellowships awarded to undergraduate students to work on research projects under the supervision of faculty members who hold an active NSERC research grant either as a principal investigator or co-investigator. 

Each year, Natural Sciences and Engineering (NSE) allots The Edward S. Rogers Sr. Electrical & Computer Engineering Department a number of undergraduate research awards for the summer. 

Note: The Division of Engineering Science administers its own awards. Contact the Division for more information.  

Eligibility for students 

You must be a Canadian citizen or Permanent Resident to apply for a UTEA. International students with a valid student visa for the full summer work term are also eligible. 

You may hold only one UTEA per year and are allowed a maximum of three UTEAs throughout your university career.  

Note: We encourage Canadian/Permanent Resident students who are working with ECE professors to apply for the NSERC USRA instead of the UTEA. 

Student registration status 

At the time you apply, you must be registered as a full-time student in a bachelor’s degree program at U of T, either in Natural Sciences and Engineering (NSE) or Social Science and Humanities (SSH). Priority for UTEAs is given to second- and third-year students and to first-time applicants. 

You must have attended U of T as a full-time student from the beginning of your program. An exception is made if you needed only part-time registration in your final session to complete your degree. If you have graduated, you most hold the award in the session immediately following your final one and must not have started graduate studies. 

Note: PEY Co-op students are not eligible for this award. 

Academic standing and credits  

You must have a cumulative average of at B+ or higher. For third- and fourth-year students, this average may be obtained by considering your best two years of study.  

You cannot hold any degrees higher than a bachelor’s in NSE or SSH. You may hold a bachelor’s degree in another discipline and be studying towards a second bachelor’s degree in NSE or SSH. 

You are permitted to take up to two courses during your UTEA (i.e., 0.5 FCE in each summer term) — only if your UTEA supervisor agrees. If class times are during UTEA working hours, you will need to arrange to make up the time. (The UTEA should be the priority. If the workload becomes unmanageable, you will need to drop the course.) 

You will not receive academic credits for your UTEA project. 

UTEA restrictions 

  • You may only be nominated in one department under one supervisor. 
  • You cannot apply for both a NSE and SSH UTEA in the same year. 
  • You cannot concurrently hold a UTEA and an NSERC USRA. 

Eligibility and timeline for research supervisors


To be eligible, a supervisor must hold an active NSERC or SSHRC research grant (either as the principal investigator or co-investigator) while their student holds the UTEA award. An exception is made if the supervisor is actively seeking funding — that is, the supervisor has submitted an application to an eligible NSERC or SSHRC program as defined by the UTEA guidelines (see below) — and the results are pending.  

A supervisor may support a maximum of two UTEA applications. 

A member of U of T faculty who holds exclusively NSERC Research Tools and Instruments, Canada Research Chairs, Canada Excellence Research Chairs or Infrastructure Grants are not eligible. 

For complete details, see the  UTEA Program Guidelines (PDF; updated 2024). 

Administrative timeline 


First-round, verbal offers of UTEAs happen in early April. 

The Registrar’s Office contacts successful applicants’ PIs to prompt them to complete an application using the MY Research – Application (MRA) online system for each UTEA applicant. (This replaces the paper RIS Application Attachment Form used in previous years.) The supervisor accesses the MRA through the Vice President Research and Innovation RAISE project page or through Campus Business Connect.  

Important: The MRA record will not be saved and your application not submitted unless you attach a document to the MRA record; this document may be a copy of your proposal (Part II of the application). 

The Research Services office completes an administrative check of the UTEA award list and establishes a research fund account for each eligible UTEA under the research supervisor. 


The Research Services office issues a UTEA award letter to the research supervisor and provides a copy to the Department Chair and Dean of U of T Engineering. 

Administrative support staff process the PI top-up payment.  

It is the responsibility of the research supervisor to communicate all award, payment and reporting details to the student since these awards are not administered by the ECE Undergraduate Office. 

How to apply  

To apply for a UTEA, you must create an application package that contains the three parts below in one PDF document. All documents must be typed. Handwritten applications will not be accepted.  

The order of the sections must be as follows: 

  1. Student Application Part 1 (docx)
    • Name of discipline: This refers to the name of your program (e.g., Electrical and Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science, etc.). 
    • Institution: Students from U of T should put “University of Toronto. 
    • Department: Students from ECE should put “Electrical & Computer Engineering, Edward S. Rogers Department of”  
    • Expected degree completion: Use the YYYY/MMformat. The month will either be June (06) or November (11). 
    • How many academic years will you have completed towards your degree program?: Enter the year you will have completed at the end of current term. 
    • Email address: Use your U of T email address. 
  2. Research Supervisor Part 2 (docx) You do not need to obtain the Head of the Department’s signature at this time. We will forward it to that person for a signature. 
  3. Unofficial ACORN Academic History report (Your name must be visible on the print out. Those without a visible name will not be accepted.) 

Name your application package — i.e., the single PDF document — as follows: “LastName, FirstName – UTEA.” Email this document to before the deadline.  

Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. 

Note: If you send multiple applications, only the document from most recent email will be considered.