National essay challenge

To promote innovative, policy-relevant research by up-and-coming scholars, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is running the National Essay Challenge for graduate students in Canadian universities.


  • you must be a graduate student enrolled at a Canadian university for the 2018 to 2019 academic year
  • your essay must be either an empirical research paper, using qualitative or quantitative methodologies, or an evidence-based policy paper related to IRCC’s mandate
  • the essay cannot be co-authored and you must have the support of a professor

What’s in it for me?

Up to 6 finalists will receive:

  • an IRCC certificate of achievement
  • an invitation to present at the International Metropolis Conference 2019 in Ottawa-Gatineau and at an IRCC Research Matters Event, with $500 in addition to travel and conference fees paid
  • the possibility of an internship or offer of casual employment from IRCC

How do I enter?

  • send an email to to access the National Essay Challenge group on GCcollab, where you will find information about the requirements of the Challenge
  • once you are a member of the National Essay Challenge GCcollab group, you will need to submit your working essay title by November 15, 2018
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