OLSAS – Indigenous Applicants

Last updated: August 16, 2022

University program information is subject to change. Refer to the application and the university’s website for the most up-to-date details.

Ontario law schools recognize their shared responsibility to Indigenous peoples. They are committed to responding to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action.

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Bora Laskin Faculty of Law (Lakehead University)

Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit and Métis) Category

We strongly encourage Indigenous applicants from across Canada to apply to our program. We are committed to improving Indigenous representation in the Canadian legal community.

To apply under the Indigenous category, you must be of Indigenous ancestry: First Nations, Inuit or Métis.

Applicants in this category are required to submit evidence of Indigenous identity, such as a copy of a status card or letter of support from an Indigenous organization, like a band council or Métis community council.

You are also asked to outline in your Personal Statement your relationship to your community, including how you have contributed to, are connected to and identify with your community.

You must have a minimum of 3 years of university and must also take the LSAT exam.

Applications are reviewed holistically, as are all applications to the JD program.

Read more about the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law.

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Lincoln Alexander School of Law (Toronto Metropolitan University, formerly Ryerson University)

Indigenous Category

We welcome and encourage Indigenous candidates to apply to our program. We are committed to improving access of Indigenous people to law school and increasing the representation in the field of law.

If you apply to the Indigenous category, you must include an outline in your Personal Statement that demonstrates your relationship and connection to your community and/or to Indigenous culture. You may also speak about the impact of colonization on your family, including if it impacts your connection to the community or your connection to Indigenous culture.

One of your reference letters can also corroborate your interest in, and identification with, your Indigenous community.

Those who identify as Indigenous and another category listed under the Access category can choose which application category they prefer.

Read more about the Lincoln Alexander School of Law.

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Osgoode Hall Law School (York University)

Indigenous Applicants

We are committed to increasing Indigenous representation in the legal profession and strongly encourage applications from Indigenous candidates.

To have your file reviewed as an Indigenous candidate, you must provide documentation that corroborates your identification and connection with your Indigenous community. More specifically, we will strongly consider your service and involvement or leadership within your community, on Indigenous issues or within Indigenous circles. In our experience, those markers of solidarity and ability to be supportive of others within your community correlate with academic and extracurricular success in law school.

If the Admissions Committee determines that insufficient documentation has been provided, you may be reviewed as a General applicant.

We are committed to Indigenous student success through initiatives and programming delivered by our Indigenous faculty members and our Program Manager, Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation, Lori Mishibinijima. For more information, email Lori Mishibinijima.

Read more about Osgoode Hall Law School.

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University of Ottawa

Indigenous Category

Persons who are First Nations, Inuit or Métis may apply in this category if they wish.

Proof of Indigenous identity must be provided. It can take different forms. Consult the University of Ottawa’s policy on admissions streams and scholarships intended for First Nations, Inuit and Métis applicants [PDF].

If you choose to apply in the Indigenous applicant category, we encourage you to use your Personal Statement to describe your connection to your Indigenous community, including the extent to which you are involved in your Indigenous community, if applicable.

Applicants in the Indigenous category must submit all components listed in the Application Components section. They must also submit proof of Indigenous identity, a tailored Personal Statement and a reference letter in support of the community connection. Applicants in this category must submit their resumé or curriculum vitae to OLSAS via SAM.

Read more about the University of Ottawa.

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Queen’s University

Indigenous Peoples Category

Our Faculty of Law is committed to increasing Indigenous representation within the legal profession and therefore welcomes applications from Indigenous Peoples, including First Nation (Status and Non-Status), Inuit and Métis.

We will consider applications based on several factors, such as:

  • Identification with your Indigenous community
  • Academic performance
  • LSAT results
  • Employment history
  • Letters of reference
  • Personal Statement

The Admissions Committee uses this material to judge whether an applicant can undertake the JD degree program successfully.

If there is strong evidence of academic ability in the application, an exception might be made to the academic standards.

Read more about Queen’s University.

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University of Toronto

Indigenous Applicant Category

Indigenous applicants, including those of Indian (status and non-status), Inuit and Métis heritage, represent unique groups in Canada and are given special consideration when applying to the Faculty of Law. We strongly encourage Indigenous applications.

Current Indigenous students, the Indigenous Students’ Association Faculty Advisor, the Manager of the Indigenous Initiative Office and the Assistant Dean, Students, are delighted to speak with you about life at the law school. Email the JD Admissions Office to arrange an introduction.

Applicants who satisfy both the Indigenous and Mature applicant categories should select the Indigenous applicant category only and may also provide a resumé for their application.

We encourage Indigenous applicants to outline their identification with, involvement in, and connection to their communities.

Read more about the University of Toronto.

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Western University

Indigenous Category

We recognize that members of First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities are not adequately represented within the legal profession and therefore strongly encourage applications from these groups.

The Indigenous Law Centre (ILC) at the University of Saskatchewan offers courses for incoming (1L) Indigenous law students from May through July. Incoming Indigenous law students who successfully complete the University of Saskatchewan ILC summer program will receive credit for first-year Property Law and Indigenous Law at Western Law, and will receive funds to subsidize the cost of the summer program.

Indigenous Services Canada’s Post-Secondary Student Support Program provides financial assistance to First Nations and eligible Inuit students who are enrolled in eligible postsecondary programs. Additional federal assistance is also available to Indigenous students from several other sources. Finally, financial assistance is available for Métis and Non-Status students through the Department of Justice Canada’s Legal Studies for Aboriginal People Program.

Required application components:

  • Official transcripts for all postsecondary education
  • 2 confidential reference letters, one of which must be academic (i.e., from a university professor). The other should corroborate your involvement with your Indigenous community.
    • Note: If more than 2 reference letters are received, only 2 will be read.
  • Personal Statement
  • Autobiographical Sketch, Detailed Sketch and verifiers
  • LSAT score(s) and the LSAT Writing
  • Proof of Indigenous status or ancestry, or other ties to your Indigenous community

Resumés are not required for Indigenous applicants and will not be reviewed.

Read more about Western University.

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University of Windsor

Applications from Indigenous Applicants

We recognize that Indigenous applicants are not adequately represented within the legal profession. Our admission policy encourages Indigenous applicants to pursue legal studies.

If you are an Indigenous applicant and receive an acceptance to the Faculty of Law, you are required to complete the Indigenous Pre-Law Summer Program offered through Windsor Law in August.

If you wish to be considered under this policy, rather than under general admission criteria, you must apply to Windsor Law in accordance with the admission and application procedures.

We encourage you to show your connection to your community when completing the Personal Statement questions.

The LSAT is a required component of the application process. Although we encourage you as an Indigenous applicant to complete the LSAT, in special circumstances, this requirement may be waived.

A written request must be made by email and addressed to the Chair, Admissions Committee, Faculty of Law, University of Windsor.

OLSAS applications are due to the OUAC by the specified deadlines. You may request an extended deadline by email, addressed to the Chair of the Admissions Committee, Faculty of Law, University of Windsor. You must state your reasons for failing to meet the original deadline.

Read more about applying as an Indigenous applicant.

Read more about the University of Windsor.

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