I am currently applying to PhD programs in Canada, and one of the schools that I am applying to has asked applicants to use a template CV.

As part of the "Awards" section, the template asks applicants to highlight the "competition" involved with each award. I was very aggressive in applying to awards this year and managed to win 6 in about 10 months. However, after contacting the award administrators, I found out that some of the awards I won hardly had any competition. For instance, one of my awards valued at $6,000 has a 97% success rate; another valued at $500 to develop a trainee-led teaching initiative had only 4 applicants, each of which got the award.

I wondered if there is an interesting way of framing the awards I won this year without them coming off as worthless. Any advice would be sincerely appreciated!

1 Answer 1


one of my awards valued at $6,000 has a 97% success rate

There must be some specific prerequisites that limit the number of people who can even apply for this award and that are the actual achievement.

You need to highlight the value of the award and the prerequisites, which on there own might already be a significant and impressive achievement.

E.g., "develop[ing] a trainee-led teaching initiative" shows your initiative and ability to complete a project and that is the important part for your CV. The award is mostly documentation and evidence of the achievement.

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