Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of frequently asked questions and answers about ways to support UBC.
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What are the different types of student awards?

There are a number of different awards available. Many awards are established in honour, in memory or in celebration of a family member, friend or colleague, and can be a fitting way to commemorate the accomplishments of someone who has touched your life. An endowed award can carry the honoree’s name in perpetuity.

Existing UBC awards are available at Awards Search website.


Fellowships are prestigious awards, enabling students to concentrate full time on their studies and research. Usually given to students enrolled in programs at the master’s or PhD level, fellowships are granted on the basis of academic excellence and/or research productivity. UBC suggests a minimum of $20,000 is made available for annual distribution, although some of the university’s more prestigious fellowships have been established at the $25,000 level.


Scholarships recognize academic achievement and assist recipients with the cost of continuing their education. These merit-based awards are granted to students at both the graduate and undergraduate level. Students must be in the top 10% of their class, by UBC Senate regulations. For your scholarship to have a maximum impact, we suggest that each award provides for a significant portion of a student’s tuition, student fees and textbook costs, which typically range from $5,600 to $9,000 a year.


Bursaries assist students with expenses incurred while pursuing an academic program. The primary consideration in the selection for your bursary’s recipients is financial need. UBC suggests a minimum of $1,000 a year is made available for distribution.


Prizes are awarded to students for academic excellence or achievement in a particular subject area. They usually take the form of a monetary award valued at $1,000 or more.

Service Awards

Service awards are provided to both graduate and undergraduate students in good academic standing who have demonstrated excellence in a range of non-academic fields, including community service, student leadership, volunteerism, and athletic or artistic performance. These awards are valued at $1,000 or greater.

How can I fund an award?

You can fund an award at UBC on an endowed or an annual basis, or a combination of both.

Endowed Awards

To establish an endowed award, you, individually or with a group of other donors, set up a capital fund at UBC to support the award in perpetuity. The university uses only the investment income generated by the capital to provide the annual award. [1] In this manner, the fund begins to build for the future, enabling the value of the award to increase over time.

We will work with you to set up the Endowment Fund Terms of Reference, which lays out the framework in which the fund will be administered. Suggested minimum capital for establishing named award endowments are as follows:


You may choose to endow new awards at levels that substantially exceed the above minimums, keeping in mind the expenses students face annually for tuition fees, text books and living expenses. As an alternative, you may initially establish an endowment at the above levels and then add to it over time until it increases to provide an ever-growing level of award support.

Annually Funded Awards

Some donors choose to fund awards on a year-to-year basis with an annual gift. If you choose to establish an award annually, an initial commitment of at least three years is required, after which the award can be renewed one year at a time. UBC Development will contact you by mail each fall for confirmation of support for your award for the coming year. We will work with you to finalize an Annual Award Agreement when the award is established.

Externally Administered Awards

Externally Administered Awards are scholarships, bursaries, fellowships, awards or prizes administered by individuals or organizations outside UBC. Externally administered award donors manage most aspects of their award, including advertising, establishing award criteria, distributing applications, evaluating candidates, and selecting the winner.

Externally administered award donors can disburse funds to students at UBC by forwarding the funds to the university. As long as the student is registered, Student Financial Awards and Assistance will apply the funds to the student’s outstanding tuition and student fees, and will issue any remaining funds to the student in the form of a cheque. UBC will also issue the appropriate tax information slips (T4A’s) to the student, as required by Canada Revenue Agency.

With externally administered awards, the university has little or no input to the selection of award recipients. For this reason, funds for these awards are not considered charitable donations and tax receipts cannot be issued to the donor.

Cheques should be made payable to UBC and sent to the attention of Maria Rances at 500-5950 University Blvd, Vancouver, BC, Canada, V6T 1Z3. For more information, please contact Maria at 604.822.4437 or

[1] UBC’s Endowment Management Policy #113 currently allows for an expenditure of income at a rate of 3.5 percent of the capital in the endowment fund, with remaining income generated on the fund being carried forward for eventual deposit into the capital account.


How can I set up a fund in honour of someone (a special tribute fund)?

Special tribute funds at UBC can be established in honour of a person, special event or anniversary, or in memory of someone special who has passed. With a named award, you can choose the personal qualities or achievements that you would like to nurture and reward, such as academic achievement in a particular subject, leadership, community involvement, artistic or athletic achievement. This is a wonderful way to create a lasting tribute, providing a way of ensuring that the person or event can be recognized and celebrated for many years to come.

At the same time, a named award provides invaluable, ongoing support for current and future students and researchers at UBC. Your gift will help to support the next generation of professionals in your designated area of support, and help to enhance UBC’s national and international reputation in that area.

You may set up a tribute fund to support a faculty or a specific program of your choice, create a named award to be presented annually, or establish an endowed student award that can be awarded to students in perpetuity.

If you are remembering someone who has passed, you also have the option of a custom memorial page on UBC’s memorial site: This is an online tribute to the deceased that celebrates their life and connections to UBC, invites people to make a donation in their name, and provides an opportunity for friends and family to add their own memories and photographs. Many families find comfort in knowing that the site is there permanently, creating a lasting tribute to their loved one and their connection to UBC.

We are happy to help with any questions you might have regarding setting up a special tribute fund. Please contact Annual Giving at or 604.827.4111.


How can I raise funds for UBC projects on my own? (third party fundraising)

UBC is very grateful for fundraising efforts on behalf of UBC programs. If you are interested in driving, planning, and executing fundraising for approved UBC projects, either on your own or with an organization, this is referred to as Third Party Fundraising.

All Third Party Fundraising must adhere to the following UBC requirements:

  1. All fundraising must directly benefit a UBC project or initiative that has been approved in advance by UBC.
  3. UBC name and logos:
    1. UBC is consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. We take our reputation seriously and our brand, through which people recognize us, is strongly associated with our reputation. Therefore, unauthorized use of UBC’s name and logos is prohibited. We are happy for you to use our brand on approved marketing materials. We ask that you submit all your marketing materials to UBC for review and approval before you publish them. Please contact Annual Giving at or 604.827.4111.
    2. UBC Logo guidelines can be found here:
  4. Fundraising events:
    1. Third-party organizers will be responsible for any event expenses.
    2. All event expenses need to be covered through the event proceeds (i.e. ticket sales, sponsorship) and not through tax-receiptable donations. Tax-receiptable donations must be received in full by UBC.
    3. Third-party organizers must clearly state the allocation of proceeds from the event – whether UBC is receiving all, or a portion, of the monies received. This must be made clear on all public communications about the event as required by CRA guidelines, including invitations. Third-party organizers must retain the financial records for the event for three years, and UBC may request an accounting.
    4. Third-party organizers are responsible for arranging appropriate insurance coverage, licenses, permits and other approvals prior to the event. UBC’s special event insurance will not cover the event. By agreeing to organize a third-party event, the organizer(s) clearly understand that they are required to arrange for appropriate insurance and they are responsible for claims that may arise as a result of the event.
  5. Third-party organizers will provide all staffing and volunteers for the event.
  6. UBC may withdraw the use of its name and logos and cancel its involvement in the event if there are concerns about the event. UBC will not be responsible for financial or other damages that may result from the withdrawal and cancellation.
  7. Third-party organizers will use their own mailing list for the fundraising activity. UBC does not provide lists of donors, alumni or volunteers to any third-party organizer. Names and contact information for donors to the event will only be provided to third-party organizers if the donor has agreed to allow UBC to share this information.
  8. Donors will be recognized and stewarded by UBC. Donors may be recognized through UBC giving clubs. Third-party organizers may also recognize and steward these donors.


How can I give to UBC when I’m living abroad?

The University of British Columbia has established three international charitable foundations for donors living in the United States, the United Kingdom and Hong Kong. These foundations help non-residents of Canada support UBC while maximizing their tax benefits. Gifts made to our foundations will flow directly to UBC to be used as you choose. No administration fees of any kind are deducted from your charitable gift.

Our staff is experienced working with complex gifts through our foundations. For example, each of the foundations is equipped to handle wired gifts of cash and securities, gifts received through public and private foundations, and corporate matching gifts, as well as gifts of property, charitable annuities, and legacy gifts such as bequests, insurance, or charitable trusts. For more information about giving through UBC’s international foundations, please contact UBC Gift & Estate Planning.

United States of America

The American Foundation for The University of British Columbia is a registered charity under US law (IRS #52-1559117). A letter of acknowledgement will be issued to American donors by the Foundation for the gift in US dollars. Please make your gift payable by cheque (from a US bank only) to The American Foundation for The University of British Columbia. Please note donations by credit card are not accepted.

The American Foundation for the University of British Columbia

1030 15th St. NW


Washington DC 20005

If you prefer, you can mail your cheque (payable to the American Foundation for the University of British Columbia) to:

The American Foundation for the University of British Columbia

UBC Development and Alumni Engagement

500-5950 University Boulevard

Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z3


United Kingdom

The UK Foundation of The University of British Columbia is a registered charity with the Charity Commission (charity registration number 1103437). UK supporters are encouraged to complete a Gift Aid Form to ensure the maximum tax treatment of their gift. Please make your gift payable by cheque to The UK Foundation of The University of British Columbia. Please note donations by credit card are not accepted.

The UK Foundation of the University of British Columbia

Registered in England and Wales

67 Manor Avenue,

Hounslow, Middlesex TW4 7JN

United Kingdom

No. 5042921

Charity No. 1103437

Hong Kong

The Hong Kong Foundation for UBC Limited is recognized as a charity under the Inland Revenue Ordinance of Hong Kong (business number 444488). All donations to the Foundation will be eligible for tax benefits similar to those received when giving to any other educational or charitable organization in Hong Kong. Please make your gift payable by cheque to The Hong Kong Foundation for UBC Limited. Please note donations by credit card are not accepted.

The Hong Kong Foundation for UBC Limited

Room 1207, 12/F., FWD Financial Centre

308 Des Voeux Road Central

Hong Kong

Company number: 444488