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Postdoctoral Fellowships

Program objectives

The purpose of Sentinel North postdoctoral fellowships is to encourage Ph.D. graduates to further their training and carry out research activities within Sentinel North’s research program in a transdisciplinary context. They are also intended to encourage post-graduate trainees to seek opportunities in scientifically stimulating and dynamic environments (universities, businesses, government agencies, etc.).

Fellowships of $35,000 per year are available, can be renewed once, and are paid in the form of salaries. They must be completed by the supervisor or by other sources.

There are various eligible fields of research. Outstanding graduates who have excellent academic records and scientific publications as well as research proposals with innovative, multidisciplinary potential are invited to apply.


Next competition dates : September 1st - October 10, 2020

  • Eligibility criteria

    Applicants must meet all the following conditions at the deadline of the call to be eligible for the program:

    • Have completed a Ph.D. less than five years prior to application or be in the process of doing so within six months1

    • Demonstrate their intention to pursue research activities that will lead to results and outcomes with potential applications and impact in the North, consistent with Sentinel North’s research program.

    • Propose a research project that will lead to results that have a scope and an application in the North, within the conceptual framework of Sentinel North

    • Be supervised by a Université Laval professor, or have concluded an agreement with a professor from Université Laval for the completion of the proposed postdoctoral internship

    • Be supported by a team of researchers from different disciplines or have received a letter of invitation to join a multidisciplinary research team

    • Provide proof of co-funding from the research supervisor or from other sources (private funds, foundations, etc.) to cover at least the costs of benefits for a postdoctoral fellow in order to meet the requirements of the collective agreement in effect2.


    This competition is open to all applicants interested in pursuing studies within Sentinel North’s research program with no citizenship or residency restrictions. Applicants whose research proposals are not covered by projects already funded by Sentinel North are eligible and encouraged to apply.

    Concurrent fellowships are permitted only under certain conditions. Please refer to the Specific program terms and conditions section for details.


    The date on which the degree is considered to be obtained is the date on which all degree requirements have been met, which includes successful defense of the thesis and submission of the corrected version.

    At Université Laval, postdoctoral fellows funded by research projects are unionized and covered by a collective agreement. Under the collective agreement, benefits equivalent to 19.76% of the salary paid must be added to the budget, as well as an annual 2% salary increase at the end of March each year.

  • Application procedure

    To submit an application, the candidate must fill out the online scholarship application form. This form requires the candidate to provide :

    • General information and motivation
    • Academic curriculum and professional experience
    • Other scholarships and awards obtained, social involvement
    • Information on the research project
    • The transdisciplinary aspect of the research project and relevance with the Sentinel North research program


    The following documents must be attached to the application form :

    • A copy of the applicant’s university transcripts for all studies undertaken, completed or not (certificates, diplomas, bachelor’s/Master’s/Ph.D. degrees, etc.)1. Transcripts from a same cycle must be combined into a single file.

    • Proof of successful thesis defense and a copy of the statement confirming final submission of the thesis. If the defense has not been carried out, a letter from the candidate's current supervisor mentioning the estimated date of the defense must be attached.

    • Acknowledgements of receipt from publishers for all articles submitted and notifications from publishers for articles accepted for publication (combined into a single file). For articles that have already been published, the list of references already provided in the form is sufficient.

    • Acknowledgements of receipt for any patents submitted. For patents that have been obtained, attach a reference or a copy of the patent granted (all combined into a single file).

    • A letter of invitation from the supervisor at Université Laval, providing an overall assessment of the applicant and the funds the applicant will have available to carry out the research proposal and co-fund the fellowship2

    In addition to the documents listed above, two (2) reports on the candidate (using the form REG-130E-AD or REG-130-AD for francophone sponsors), completed by sponsors other than the research supervisor, must be sent directly to before the competition deadline. The subject of the message must begin with the first and last name of the candidate and clearly state the name of the program targeted by the application. An automatic receipt will be sent to confirm receipt of documents.

    All pieces must be submitted before the competition deadline.

    For academic transcripts from institutions outside of North America, applicants must attach a letter explaining the grading system in effect at the institution in question. For original transcripts issued in a language other than English or French, a translation must be provided. Sentinel North reserves the right to verify the authenticity of information provided with the institutions of origin.

    Although the Sentinel North postdoctoral fellowship does not provide for the payment of research fees, Sentinel North wishes to ensure that the funds available to the postdoctoral fellow will be sufficient to enable him/her to complete the research project for which Sentinel North will fund it.

  • Application evaluation

    Applications are assessed and judged by the Sentinel North evaluation committee according to the evaluation criteria and weighting process. Only proposals consistent with Sentinel North's research program and supported by applicant's research supervisor will be considered.

    Indicators by evaluation criteria

    Applicant's aptitudes and experience in research (25 points)

    • The justification of the application, including the research interests and the reasons for the candidate's undertaking a postdoctoral internship and the added value of the project in relation to the doctoral work

    • The candidate's experience and achievements (publications and patents)

    • The candidate's professional experience, research or teaching assistantship, student coaching, internships

    • Recommendation letters


    Social involvement, leadership, and communication skills (15 points)

    • Social involvement: election to positions, volunteering

    • Leadership: mentoring, supervisory experience, project management, chairmanship of committees, etc.

    • Communication skills: quality and diversity of scientific communications, any activity or achievement demonstrating a candidate's ability to reinvest and enhance his / her knowledge in carrying out a research project

    • Overall presentation of the application


    Scientific quality of the proposal (25 points)

    • The clarity of scientific objectives

    • The relevance of the methodology with the research objectives

    • The originality of the project and its contribution to the advancement of knowledge in the field

    • The multidisciplinary nature of the project

    • Relevance of the project with the Sentinel North research program


    Quality and relevance of the research environment (20 points)

    • Justification of the choice of the research environment: coherence between the proposed project and the supervisor's field of research, quality of the host laboratory, available resources

    • Collaboration with the private, public and non-profit sectors for technology development if applicable) or collaboration with northern partners for projects taking place in the North

    • The multidisciplinary nature of the research team in the host environment


    Excellence of the application (15 points)

    • University grade point averages

    • Progress and duration of studies

    • Awards, scholarships and honors obtained


    Announcement of the results

    Each applicant will receive an email informing them of the evaluation committee's decision at the end of the evaluation process.

    Applicants must accept or decline the scholarship within ten (10) business days of receipt of the notice of award by sending an email to If acceptance is not received within this time limit, applicants will be deemed to have declined the scholarship.

    Sentinel North's decisions are final and binding.

  • Specific program terms and conditions

    Fellowship validity period

    • A postdoctoral fellowship has a minimum term of six months and a maximum term of 24 months. A fellowship is awarded for the maximum duration of the validity period, subject to the presentation of annual progress reports deemed satisfactory by the Sentinel North evaluation committee and the recipient's research supervisor.

    • The tenure of a fellowship begins on the date selected by the applicant, within eight months after the fellowship is awarded. For applicants who have already begun postdoctoral training, the tenure may start on the date the fellowship is awarded. Applicants should, however, allow four weeks for payment. Fellowships are not retroactive.

    • Postdoctoral fellows are eligible for this program and may receive fellowship payments for a period of two years or until the end of their postdoctoral training, whichever comes first.

    • The fellowship validity period can be extended up to 36 months under certain conditions (see Concurrent fellowships).

    Value of a postdoctoral fellowship and payment arrangements

    • The maximum value of a postdoctoral fellowship is $35,000 per year. During the 24-month eligibility period, fellowship holders receive their fellowships in the form of a salary paid every two weeks according to the Université Laval payroll schedule.

    • Fellows must pay administrative fees to Université Laval and the costs of health and hospitalization insurance for international students, where applicable.

    Required documents

    • Fellowships are conditional to proof of registration at a full time postdoctoral internship at Université Laval.

    • Fellowships are awarded on the condition that fellows obtain the required legal travel documents (visa, work permit, etc.), where applicable. Obtaining such documents is the sole responsibility of fellows. Fellowship payments will not be authorized without proof that the required legal documents have been obtained.

    Change in project

    • Fellowship holders must request permission from Sentinel North in writing prior to making any change in their project proposal. Sentinel North will verify whether the nature of the change affects the results of the evaluation the applicant received so that it can recommend whether their funding should be maintained

    Concurrent fellowships / Financial support

    • Applicants who receive scholarships from a provincial or federal agency, or any other private sources, including universities, research chairs, consortiums, private, international, and foreign foundations, governments of other Canadian provinces, and foreign governments, and/or loans and bursaries from MÉES may combine such sources of support with a Sentinel North postdoctoral fellowship if permitted under the rules of concurrence of such bodies. However, the accumulation of a Sentinel North scholarship is not authorized with funds from the CFREF Program, including Sentinel North.

    • Recipients of postdoctoral fellowships holding a major nominative award may also request the spread of Sentinel North’s financial support over a third year by making an agreement with the Sentinel North Administrative Centre, upon approval by their research supervisor and in accordance with the rules of the collective agreement in effect.



    • Fellowship holders may take a position that does not exceed 150 working hours per semester (equivalent to a period of four months or 15 weeks) provided that the research supervisors approve and such activities do not hinder their research program.

    • The salary that a fellow receives from their director of studies to work solely on their research proposal is considered to be a fellowship that may be held concurrently until the authorized cumulative sum is reached.

    • Applicants who are on paid sabbatical or educational leave that represents more than 50% of their base salary are not eligible. However, applicants who receive a deferred salary are not subject to this restriction.

    Parental leave

    • Fellows who interrupt their studies for the birth or adoption of a child may request unpaid parental leave from Sentinel North. Parental leave may be taken for up to 12 months or the equivalent of three semesters. It may start during the semester of the expected birth or adoption and must end no later than one year after the child is born. However, the fellowship coverage period for which Sentinel North receives funds from Canada First may not be exceeded.

    Further details on the procedure for awarding fellowships

    • The number of postdoctoral fellowships available is announced at the start of each competition. However, the selection committee reserves the right not to grant all available fellowships in the event that the number of available fellowships exceeds the number of applicants who meet the requirements of their programs.

    • Fellowship holders must meet program conditions throughout the term of their fellowships to remain eligible.

    • Applications presented by a supervising team where at least one member (research supervisor or co-supervisor) has not received research funds from Sentinel North are encouraged.

    • The selection criteria are subject to change from one competition to the next. In such cases, modifications will be duly posted at the start of each competition.

For more information, please contact:

Marie-France Gévry

Training programs coordinator
418-656-2131 ext. 408910


Sentinel North Postdoctoral Fellowships