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OPPI Student Scholarships

OPPI recognizes today's planning students as the Registered Professional Planners (RPPs) of tomorrow and provides student members with scholarship opportunities that award academic excellence and community contributors. 

ImpoRtant Dates

Application period opens March 1, 2024
Application period closes May 1, 2024
Recipient notifications July 2024

Recipients announced

August 2024

Awards ceremony during OPPI conference

September 2024


The Ronald M. Keeble Undergraduate Scholarship assists in furthering planning education and recognizing undergraduate student members who are making a positive contribution to their communities. 

Application Criteria: 

  • Must be an OPPI student member 
  • Must be enrolled full-time in an accredited undergraduate planning program in Ontario 
  • Must have a demonstrated commitment to the planning profession 

The Gerald Carrothers Graduate Scholarship assists in furthering planning education and recognizing graduate student members who are making a positive contribution to their communities. 

Application Criteria: 

  • Must be an OPPI student member 
  • Must be enrolled full-time in an accredited graduate planning program in Ontario 
  • Must have a demonstrated commitment to the planning profession 

Demonstrated in our ongoing work to make the planning profession in Ontario more inclusive and just, the OPPI Opportunity Scholarship is offered in acknowledgement of the financial barriers to education that disproportionately affect Black, Indigenous and other racialized people. This scholarship aligns with the recommendations of OPPI’s Indigenous Planning Advisory Committee and OPPI’s Anti-Black Racism in Planning Task Force along with INSPIRE: OPPI Strategic Plan 2025
This scholarship may be awarded to an Indigenous, Black, or other racially marginalized person currently enrolled in an accredited planning program in Ontario. This scholarship is a one-time award of up to $5,000 and may be awarded to undergraduate or graduate planning students. 
Application Criteria: 

  • Must be an OPPI student member 
  • Must be enrolled full-time in an accredited undergraduate or graduate planning program in Ontario 
  • Must be actively involved in community-based activities as a volunteer in your local and/or cultural community 
  • Must self-identify as Indigenous, Black, and/or from other racially marginalized communities 

The Paul Lowes President’s Scholarship is offered in recognition of Paul’s service and leadership as OPPI President. Paul has provided tireless leadership to strengthen the future of planning in Ontario – engaging future planners and supporting current professionals.
The Paul Lowes 2024 Scholarship recognizes an OPPI Student Member who has demonstrated leadership in innovative policy approaches to solving housing shortages. We are in a housing crises in Ontario which directly impacts young adults the most.  As a young profession planner, what innovative policy approaches can be implemented to provide additional housing supply that young professionals such as yourself can afford to rent or buy upon graduation. 

Applicants must be Student Members of OPPI at the time of application and the recipient must be enrolled full-time in an accredited undergraduate or graduate planning program. 
Selection Criteria

  • Expressed interest in the field of innovative policy approaches to solving housing shortages.
  • Relevance of the student's research to the above field (research can be completed, underway or proposed at the time of application).
  • Extent of leadership in peer group projects, working towards advances in planning for increasing housing supply by innovation policy approaches (at a local, regional or global scale).

Southwest Ontario District Planning Student Scholarships are intended to promote excellence in relevant planning education, community service and personal achievement by student members of OPPI's Southwest District who are enrolled full-time in an accredited undergraduate or graduate university planning program for the academic year in which the application is made.

In 2023, the Southwest Ontario District Planning Student Scholarship was awarded to , University of Guelph. 

The successful applicants will be selected on the basis of the following criteria:

  • Relevant academic interests a nd/or research activity to professional planning practice in Southwestern Ontario;
  • Academic performance; and
  • Current or past contributions to the activities of a community, club, volunteer organization, university, or, OPPI.

To Apply for the Southwest District Ontario Planning Scholarship a letter of application with full return mailing address, email address, and phone number must be accompanied by:

  1. No more than a two-page statement of academic interests and/or career objectives;
  2. Two letters of reference: one of which must be from either an university faculty who is a Full member of OPPI or a previous employer in a planning related profession; and
  3. One copy of all academic transcripts for all completed post-secondary courses, which is a certified original or a photocopy of an original that is verified by a member of the university staff to be a true copy.

Submission Deadline: Applications must be received by the Secretary-Treasurer of the SWOD-OPPI Educational Trust Foundation on or before November 1 each year.

Only complete applications will be considered. Up to two awards will be presented at the November meeting of the Southwestern District OPPI membership. Successful candidates must supply their social insurance number to the Secretary-Treasurer to obtain the award.

Secretary-Treasurer of the SWOD-OPPI Educational Trust Foundation
Mr. Allan Rothwell, MCIP, RPP (Retired)
5251 Line 81
RR#4 Listowel, ON
N4W 3G9
phone: 519.291.9898


To apply, students must fill out the online application form by May 1which includes a summary of up to 1000 words outlining how they meet the specific criteria of the scholarship they are applying to (applicable to all scholarship types). 

For the Paul Lowes President's Scholarship, summarize their demonstrated leadership on innovative policy approaches to increase housing supply through a proposed or current research project as it relates to planning for community. 

Two (2) letters of reference, one of which is from a Full member of OPPI by email to

Note that prior to receiving the scholarship, the recipient will be required to provide a certified academic transcript, and confirmation in writing from his or her planning school that he or she is enrolled in an OPPI-recognized undergraduate or graduate planning program for the academic year.
The Outreach Committee evaluates submissions based on the above-noted selection criteria. It may elect not to choose an award winner for any given scholarship and/or may choose a runner-up to whom the scholarship may be awarded in the event that the first-choice recipient is found to be ineligible.
Scholarship recipients will be announced within 60 days of the closing date for submissions. The winner will be profiled on OPPI’s website and OPPI’s social media channels. The winners will also be recognized at an awards event at the 2024 Conference being held in Hamilton, Ontario this September.

2023 Student Scholarship RECIPIENTS

Mario is the recipient of the Gerald Carrothers Graduate Scholarship.

Having grown up in the outskirts of a Brazilian city, Mario Ribeiro Neto deeply values the collective responsibility of a community in raising children. He recognizes the crucial role played by public services and infrastructure in creating an environment that supports this endeavor, with a particular emphasis on creating the conditions that enable queer individuals and people of color to thrive. This belief strongly influences his interest in a diversity of areas in planning, including active transportation, public transit, affordable housing, and the development of inclusive and vibrant public spaces that foster meaningful exchanges. 
Motivated by his passion to address these issues, Mario obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Architecture and Urban Planning from his hometown and is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Planning at the University of Waterloo. During his graduate studies, his research primarily focuses on policies that promote synergy between cycling infrastructure and public transit. As an emerging queer planning professional, Mario looks forward to bringing his expertise in Latin American practices to the Canadian planning context and is grateful for the support of the OPPI's Gerald Carrothers Graduate Scholarship for contributing to his pursuit of this endeavor. 


Jodie is the recipiant of the Ronald M. Keeble Undergraduate Scholarship and the Opportunity Scholarship

With an initial background in civil engineering, Jodie has always had a keen interest in the construction of cities and how people navigate urban spaces. Jodie’s discovery of urban planning, recognizing its alignment with her passions during her first year of undergraduate studies, changed her initial trajectory. 

Jodie has pursued various internships and jobs that align with her passion for planning and racial equity. Working alongside various mentors and urbanists within the field, she has gained a deeper understanding on how mainstream planning theories and practices have historically been employed to contextualize racial problems as spatial problems and how they continue to persist in serving as a pretext for the displacement and banishment of Black communities from urban spaces. In addition to this, her future research aims to dismantle ableism within the field. Specifically, exploring the intersectionality of disability and race and its compounding effects on the lived experiences of Black communities accessing essential services, housing and public spaces.

With a commitment to addressing the limited literature and underrepresentation of Black planning practitioners, her ultimate goal is to contribute to the development of more equitable and inclusive planning practices, amplifying the experiences and perspectives of marginalized communities.