September 19, 2022 – Today the Government of Canada announced a gift of $20 million to the Queen Elizabeth Scholars (QES) program in recognition of the legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“The Queen’s legacy of service and steadfast leadership will live on in the countless lives that she touched and as an inspiration to us all. Her example inspired many young Canadians to dedicate their lives to service, give back to their communities, and become the leaders of today and tomorrow. I join Canadians in thanking Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for over 70 years of selfless service and honouring her extraordinary life marked by grace, dignity, and an unwavering sense of duty,” said the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada.

The Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship program, known as the QES, is led by the Rideau Hall Foundation (RHF) in collaboration with Universities Canada, and with founding support from Community Foundations of Canada (CFC).

“On behalf of the RHF, the QES program, its scholars, our partners and our many supporters, we are deeply grateful to receive this gift in honour of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” said Teresa Marques, President and CEO of the RHF. “This gift will ensure that generations of youth have the opportunity to develop a global outlook, empathy, and understanding – all of which are essential for navigating the complexities of today’s world.”

This gift will make international experiences possible for post-secondary students who would not otherwise be able to benefit. Approximately 3,000 additional students will now have the opportunity to advance their studies and research, and develop their leadership and civic engagement skills through global collaborations. This funding provides the seed support for a new legacy campaign by the Rideau Hall Foundation to make the QES program permanent. The RHF will seek to build on this very generous gift through additional public and private donations to ensure QES remains a permanent legacy to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, supporting generations of scholars in her name.

QES is a made-in-Canada initiative that promotes international student exchange and civic engagement through project-based scholarships. The program was established in 2012 to celebrate and honour The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. To date, 106 projects have been funded at 46 Canadian universities and in 72 countries around the world, and more than 2,200 young people have completed the program.

“The Queen Elizabeth Scholars program is laying the foundation for the next generation of leaders: innovative people committed to making Canada, and the world, a better place. What an exceptionally fitting tribute to Her Majesty The Queen, who valued the importance of diplomacy of knowledge and a commitment to service and leadership,” said the Right Honourable David Johnston, Chair of the RHF and 28th Governor General of Canada

To learn more about the program, visit:

Media Inquiries:

Jill Clark
Manager, Communications and Media Relations
Rideau Hall Foundation