UHN Student and Postdoctoral Researcher Handbook

The ORT has created a comprehensive handbook for UHN Research students and postdoctoral researchers, which includes information on UHN policies, health & dental benefits, research services & facilities, wellness supports, who to go for for help, how to get involved, and much more!

Download Handbook Here


The ORT has compiled a list of awards, conference grants and fellowship opportunities for graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. Explore the opportunities and apply today!


ORT Funding Opportunties

A poster for the ORT Conference Participation Award with graphics of a prize award, a microscope, a magnifying glass, and the ORT logo in the outer corners of it. Text in the centre reads "Apply Now! ORT Conference Participation Award. Application cycles in March, July and November. Up to $500 to attend conferences

ORT Conference Participation Awards

Apply to receive up to $500 to support conference participation.

Award cycles are in March, July and November – to support conferences all year round!

More information and application can be found here.

Yellow poster with blue shapes framing each corner. the ORT logo is in the top centre of the poster. Below it reads OSOTF Unilever/Lipton Graduate Fellowship. Apply Now!! Deadline to application opens in June

OSOTF Unilever/Lipton Graduate Fellowship

Next application opens in June 2023.

More information and application found here.


The ORT hosts and showcases a variety of events throughout the year to help trainees and postdoctoral researchers develop their research and professional skills and explore different career opportunities. Check out our Workshops & Events Calendar!


International Trainees

UHN welcomes qualified international candidates from all over the world! 
International student registration is handled through the University. International postdoctoral registration is handled mostly by the postdoctoral registration themselves. This page will take you through the process and provide you with helpful information before and after you arrive in Toronto. Please note that the ORT strongly encourages you to determine what documents are necessary for working in Canada by speaking with immigration officers at the Canadian embassy in your home country. The information below is only a guide and may not include all of the processes surrounding your work permit. The following is a summary of the procedures that entitle you to work in Canada.

When preparing to travel to Canada you must remember to bring several documents with you. These documents must stay with you at all times – not in your checked baggage!

  • Your passport
  • Your CIC-issued work permit
  • Letter of Offer/Engagement from the University Health Network
  • A copy of your immunization/medical records (in English)
  • The address in Canada where you will be living

Graduate Students

  • International graduate students should refer to their degree-granting institution’s policies on health insurance and health benefits.
  • International students attending the University of Toronto can find detailed information here regarding their plan.  

Postdoctoral Researchers

  • Postdoctoral researchers who are paid through the UHN payroll are eligible to enroll in the UHN Extended Health Care and Dental Care plan for Postdoctoral Researchers.
  • To enroll in this plan, International postdocs must first enroll in the Inpatriate Health Plan (IHP) which provides coverage for the 90-day OHIP waiting period. For more information and to enroll in the Inpatriate Health Plan (IHP), please contact the UHN Benefits office at benefits@uhn.ca

For information on how to apply for the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP), get a health card and health insurance coverage, please see the Ontario Government Website. *Note that at this time there is no longer a waiting period for OHIP coverage and you can apply as soon as you arrive in Ontario.

Refer to the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) website for information on applying for a work permit or visa.

If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you must have a valid permit to legally work or study in Canada. Once you have been offered a position by a researcher at the UHN, you must obtain a Work Permit whether or not you will receive compensation from UHN.

After you received your Work Permit, your next steps are as follows:

  • Make your travel plans
  • Secure accommodation
  • Complete the required paperwork surrounding your new hire (contact your Supervisor to obtain necessary paperwork)

Note that in addition to work and study permit information, the Canadian Immigration and Citizenship (CIC) Office provides many programs and services to help ease the transition of newcomers to Canada. For more information, visit the CIC website.

The current wait time to renew work permits is extensive. This means that, in order for a researcher or scholar to have a renewed work permit in place by the time the old one expires, the application process must begin well in advance of the current permit’s expiry. To learn about this process and check current wait times, see here.

Note: If an international student intends to remain in Canada to complete a postdoctoral position, they must apply for a Canadian work permit, even if their student authorization is still valid. In addition to work and study permit information, the Canadian Immigration and Citizenship (CIC) Office provides many programs and services to help ease the transition of newcomers to Canada. For more information, visit the CIC website.

  1. Obtain a Social Insurance Number. All workers in Canada must obtain a Social Insurance Number (SIN) card. The SIN is required to receive your salary/stipend, open a bank account, file taxes, etc. To apply, go to Government of Canada SIN and follow the instructions. Applications can be done online, in person or by mail.
  2. Obtain a bank account at one of Canada’s major banks.
  3. Complete on-boarding tasks assigned by People & Culture (HR) and your Supervisor’s administrative assistant. This will include mandatory training and orientation sessions, Health Services Requirements, Payroll documentation, etc.
  4. Register with the ORT by completing this form!