S. Leonard Syme Training Fellowships in Work and Health

In appreciation of Dr. S. Leonard Syme's contributions to the Institute for Work & Health (IWH) as chair of its Scientific Advisory Committee from 1995 to 2002, IWH established a research training fellowship in his name in 2002.

The fellowships are for early-career researchers at the master's or doctoral level intending to study work and health. Preference is given to candidates whose research interests include: prevention of work-related injury and illness; understanding the social determinants of health and illness in work environments; prevention and management of work disability; or evaluating workplace interventions to improve health. IWH is particularly interested in candidates who show a commitment to research that promises to reduce work-related injury, illness and disability in Ontario. In the spirit of Dr. Syme's contributions to research mentorship, candidates from any disciplinary background are eligible for training fellowships.

Awards are based on the merit of the research proposed. Typically, a maximum of three fellowships of $5,000 are awarded each competition, but occasionally one major fellowship of up to $15,000 is provided. Syme Fellowship awards are not normally held by candidates currently holding another major training salary award.

The term of an award is 12 months. Successful candidates will be expected to share some aspect of their research in an IWH Speaker Series presentation during the course of the fellowship. They will also be invited to participate in other aspects of academic life at the Institute.

Eligibility criteria

Candidates for the S. Leonard Syme Training Fellowships in Work & Health must fulfil the following:

  • Be currently enrolled or accepted into an accredited graduate studies program at the master’s or doctoral level. Candidates who have been accepted into a graduate program, but have not yet started their graduate studies, must provide proof of acceptance and begin their studies by a date specified by the Institute.
  • Be enrolled in one of the following IWH-affiliated universities: McMaster University, University of Toronto, University of Waterloo, York University, Ryerson University, Trent University, University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, University of Montreal, University of Lethbridge, Dalhousie University or Lakehead University.
  • Be directly supervised or mentored by an IWH scientist or adjunct scientist.
    NOTE: If applicants are not associated with an IWH scientist or adjunct scientist, they may request that their application be reviewed and, if successful, they may be assigned an IWH scientist as a mentor.

How to apply

Applicants must complete an online application form, which is made available when a Syme fellowship competition is open.

Applicants must arrange for two academic reference forms to be completed and e-mailed by the referees directly to the Institute.

The following materials are required to complete the online form:

  • Statement of the candidate’s research interests (maximum 300 words) and career objectives (maximum 200 words).
  • Two (2) academic references. The reference form is made available with the online application form.
  • Copies of transcripts from all post-secondary institutions in PDF format (unofficial and student-issued transcripts are permitted; e.g., ROSI screenshots). Maximum file size is 2MB.
  • Curriculum vitae in PDF format (maximum file size is 2MB).


If you have any questions, please contact:

Lyudmila Mansurova
Administrative Assistant, Office of the President
Institute for Work & Health