The Jack Layton Prize for a Better Canada


Name: The Jack Layton Prize for a Better Canada

DescriptionThis prize of $5000, launched on the 10th anniversary of Jack Layton’s passing, is designed to encourage emerging McGill scholars to engage—with similar hope, optimism and passion—in the leading issues of our times. The prize is supported by a donation from Jack Layton’s widow, Olivia Chow.

Jack Layton had abiding passions—for the urgent need for action on climate change; for an end to violence against women; for economic and social equality; for good, affordable and liveable cities; and for an end to homelessness. Layton witnessed homeless people freezing to death on Canada’s winter streets, and that filled him with rage. He worked across party lines to try to do something about it, with some success—which filled him with hope. He was successful in his political career, leading the NDP to official opposition status in the 2011 federal election. He was, alas, not successful in his battle with the cancer that then took his life—leaving much still to be done. In a memorable final letter, Layton urged young people to carry on.

Area(s) of Study: Must be a full-time student at McGill University 

Value: $5,000

Eligibility: Must be a full-time student at McGill University; an essay submission is required

Student Status: Full-time

Applications: Apply at the Max Bell School of Public Policy


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