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Sauvé Scholarship Program at McGill University, Montreal, Quebec

The Sauvé Scholars Program exists for young leaders from across the globe who want to change the world. The Scholars are chosen above all on the basis of criteria laid out by the Right Honourable Jeanne Sauvé:

  1. Initiative

  2. Motivation

  3. Vision

  4. Imagination

  5. Demonstrated communication skills

  6. Awareness of international and domestic issues

  7. A strong desire to effect change

The Sauvé Scholars Program has welcomed 126 Scholars from 50 different countries (Afghanistan, Algeria, Armenia, Bhutan, Brazil, Burma, China, Cuba, Congo DRC, Egypt, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Portugal, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Turkey, Uganda, the United Kingdom the United States and Zambia).


Launched in 2003, the Sauvé Scholars Program has evolved from the Jeanne Sauvé Youth Foundation, created in 1991 by the late Jeanne Sauvé, the first woman to serve as Governor General of Canada, the country’s Head of State and Commander-in-Chief.

The Right Honourable Jeanne Sauvé was a woman of strength and vision. Throughout her distinguished career as youth activist, journalist, Minister of the Crown, Speaker of the House of Commons and ultimately Governor General, she remained at the forefront of the most socially progressive issues of her day, and was deeply committed to advancing the role of young leaders.


In June 1991 Mme Sauvé explained how the Jeanne Sauvé Youth Foundation came into being and her goals in establishing it:

“Canadian Governors General have the privilege when they leave office of creating an institution which will bear their name …. At the end of my mandate, I decided that my contribution would be to establish a permanent international forum for young leaders. No such institution exists in the world and I strongly believe that the young leaders of the world have a pressing need to get involved in issues which confront their generation.”


Each year, up to 14 remarkable young leaders are invited to come to Montreal for the academic calendar year. They live together in a beautifully restored mansion, enjoy  access to McGill University’s academic programs and other resources – including lectures, conferences and events suited to the advancement of their individual professional and intellectual goals – while benefiting from the communal life and multi-faceted exchanges with their fellow Scholars.

The Sauvé experience, a period of personal and professional growth, is founded on:

  1. Intense exchange of ideas and experience, supported by communal life

  2. Extensive intellectual freedom, allowing each participant to develop according to his or her needs and aspirations

  3. Focus on action accompanied by a clear commitment to the community —including the host community

  4. Commitment to dialogue among cultures, which allows participants to understand and assimilate viewpoints built within multiple frames of reference.


Are you eligible?

Yes, if you are:

  1. Between 23 and 30 years old on 31 December every year

  2. A highly motivated self-starter

  3. A committed agent of change

  4. Fluent in English

Yes, if you have:

  1. A minimum of 3 years of work or other professional experience, at least two of which are full time

  2. Completed your undergraduate education, or the equivalent, by 31 July every year (advanced degrees are welcome but not a requirement)

  3. A record of accomplishment and ability to meet challenges

  4. Demonstrated leadership qualities

  5. Proven communications skills

  6. A highly developed curiosity about the world

  7. A strong interest in international and domestic issues

  8. An eagerness to engage with the complex issues of the day

Yes, if you possess these qualities:

  1. Initiative

  2. Vision

  3. Imagination

  4. Determination to achieve your goals

Yes, if you are seeking the time and opportunity to:

  1. Grow, both personally and professionally

  2. Enhance your ability to effect change

  3. Undertake or complete an important project or field of study

Being a Sauvé Scholar is not for the faint of heart. It is challenging. The environment is intellectually stimulating, filled with human and physical resources. With networks enriched and expanded, horizons sharpened and refocused, it is a year of incredible personal growth.

There is no typical Sauvé Scholar, no pre-established profile, other than demonstrated achievement in his or her chosen field, and evidence of the will, vision and determination to effect change for the betterment of society. Candidates are expected to have a solid academic record and, while attending university, to have taken an active part as a student or community leader. Professional experience (whether paid or volunteer) is an important asset.


Alumni and current Scholars represent a range of academic disciplines, professional experience, community activities and interests. They have come from fields such as the arts, advocacy, economics, education, entrepreneurship, the environment, government, media and communications, medicine, and social and community development. Their proposed projects and research reflect the same diversity as their backgrounds.


Maison Jeanne Sauvé

1514, Docteur-Penfield Avenue Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3G 1B9

Phone:  514 848 9292 Fax:  514 848 9409 Email:

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