Studying in college is a dream many individuals have. After all, this is one of the pathways that let them achieve their goals in life, particularly when they are eager to find a better job in the future and to learn more about their desired course or degree.
The only thing is, attending school can be quite heavy on one’s budget. Not all students and their respective families are capable of sending themselves or their children to school. Thankfully, however, there are Canada Student Grants and Loans for those who want to get financial help for their schooling needs.
Those who are studying for college or university after their secondary education would do well to go over what the program has to offer, especially the benefits it can afford them. Learn more about the program and how to apply through this article.
- Get to Know the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program
- What the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program Has to Offer
- Applying for Student Grants and Loans
- Managing Student Loans
- Pros of the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program
Get to Know the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program
The Canada Student Grants and Loans program is an initiative by the Canadian federal government that seeks to offer students financial assistance to help them through their tertiary education. This particular initiative is filed under the Canada Student Financial Assistant Program (CSFA Program).
This initiative is made possible with the help of all the provinces and territories throughout the country, except for those areas that have their own financial aid program, letting them effectively and efficiently provide student aid to those who need it.
It works by allowing qualified individuals to apply through the said program for a student loan. However, applicants will also be automatically considered for a student grant. A grant will provide students with a particular amount of funding they do not have to repay, while student loans need to be paid back over time.
These grants and student loan applications are available to both full and part-time students. The funding for these is normally given out at the start and middle of the school year.
Reasons Why You Should Apply for This Program
There are various reasons why students should apply for the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program. One of these is to help alleviate the costs of going to school.
Apart from this, applying for financial aid allows individuals to be considered for different types of grants, particularly when they apply early. This won’t be possible at all for those who do not risk applying to this program.
What the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program Has to Offer
One of the perks that come with the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program is that it makes it easier for interested individuals to apply not only for student loans but also to be considered for grants as well in just one application.
In relation to this, students who are considered for a grant will be given a certain amount of money or funding. What’s great about this aspect is that individuals may qualify for more than one grant at any single time, provided they meet the eligibility criteria for each of these available grants in their province.
The Canada Student Grants and Loans Program opens up opportunities for students to go to school without having to worry about money or funding in the meantime. Grants don’t even need to be paid back and loans are only required to be paid back with interest after students finish schooling, making it a win-win situation.
Full-time students and even part-time students get their share of funding. Whether they have dependents or have permanent disabilities, applicants are welcomed here and are given the assistance they need as much as possible. There are even services and equipment available for students with disabilities.
What You Need to Remember About Student Aid
The amount given to students varies from one province and territory to another. These are also dependent on a number of factors, such as the number of dependents, the type of study, and if the applicant has a full disability.
Individuals can get up to $3,000 per academic year for undergraduate studies for low-income families and up to $1,200 per academic year for middle-income families. Those with dependents can be awarded up to $1,920 per academic year depending on their case.
Individuals with permanent disabilities and those who have special needs for services and equipment may be granted up to $8,000 per academic year.
Applying for Student Grants and Loans
Individuals who are interested in applying for the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program should visit their respective provincial and territorial student aid offices. This is the only way they can apply and each of these student aid offices has its own website linked on the Government of Canada’s official page.
The application process itself is quite easy, there are guides available on just about every provincial or territorial student aid office website. Applicants generally need to provide their personal information such as their name, address, phone number, email address, birthday, and gender.
Other essential documents that applicants need to provide include their Line 15000 income tax return form to show their total income amount from the previous year. Applicants need to give their academic information, including their program and its length, the start and end dates, and their respective student number.
Applicants also need to provide how much money they’ll be getting from other sources, such as parents, awards, and the like. To apply, students need to create a student aid account through their local student aid office website. They’ll need to verify their identity on the platform as well using their driver’s license or any valid ID.
Eligibility Requirements and Qualifications
Students from low and middle-income families may apply for student grants and loans under the program. Apart from coming from these brackets, they should also qualify for a Canada Student Loan and must either be enrolled in a full or part-time program.
Besides these, those who have dependents are qualified if the dependents under the age of 12, provided they show proof of their dependents. Students with permanent disabilities are likewise asked to show proof of their permanent disability.
Managing Student Loans
Recipients of student loans have a six-month non-repayment period after they have graduated or finished their final school term. After this period, borrowers will receive a repayment package that details how much they need to pay.
While individuals have the option to pay six months after they have graduated, they can start paying off their student loans before this. They will not be asked to pay any interest and will only pay the principal loan amount.
To make a payment, individuals should log in to their National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC) account. They can add their banking information and make use of this platform to make payments as well.
What to Know About Student Loan Repayments
Students or individuals who are eligible to receive student aid should bear in mind that these loans will only be possible for a certain time. Full-time students are eligible to receive student aid for up to 340 weeks.
This period can be extended for students who are earning their doctor’s degree, allowing them to get student aid for up to 400 weeks. Meanwhile, students with a permanent disability are eligible to receive student aid for up to 520 weeks.
Students should remember that they need to start paying back their loans six months after graduating or finishing their studies. In addition, it is only after the lifetime limit has been reached that interest will start to accumulate.
Pros of the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program
One of the advantages of applying for the Canada Student Grants and Loans Program is that individuals who apply are automatically assessed if they are qualified for a grant, increasing their chances of going to school without having to repay anything.
On top of this, it’s worth noting that these financial initiatives by the government offer alternative options that allow students to go to school. Student grants and loans let individuals cover the cost of tuition and other school-related fees in the meantime.
What’s more, the repayment period given by the student loan offices is more than fair. Given that students are given six months after their full-time studies before being asked to repay their student loans, they have enough time to find jobs or other sources to pay these loans back without interest accruing.
Something to Consider About the Program
The only ‘downside’ that one may see when it comes to applying for student loans is that these need to be paid back. At times, these loans can even come with interest.
There are, however, repayment assistance plans available from the Canadian government for those struggling to make payments. In general, one tip that applicants should observe across the board is to apply early. This way, they know just how much money they’ll be getting.
At the very least, students should apply 60 days prior to the start of their classes so that it can give them ample time to work out their finances.
The Canada Student Grants and Loans program is one of the federal initiatives across the country that has helped numerous individuals across various provinces and territories. By learning how to apply, you too can reap the benefits of what this program has to offer.
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