(OTTAWA, ON) – The federal government has announced the intention to expand eligibility for Canada Student Grants for students from low- and middle-income families enrolled in short-duration educational programs. The enhancements will make post-secondary education more accessible to students in low- and middle-income families, and will also help Canadians acquire or upgrade their skills, making it easier to enter the workforce.
Canada Student Grants are financial assistance from the Government of Canada that students do not have to pay back. Over $10 billion annually is invested by the Government to support post-secondary education, which includes providing students with financial assistance such as Canada Student Grants.
Beginning in 2016-2017, Canada Student Grants will be made available to qualifying low- and middle-income students enrolled in educational programs with a minimum duration of 34 weeks. Currently, students must be enrolled in an educational program with a minimum duration of 60 weeks to qualify.
The expansion would help approximately 42,000 additional students per year, including approximately 22,000 students at private career colleges, gain eligibility to Canada Student Grants.
“By expanding the eligibility of Canada Student Grants for students from low- and middle-income families to include short-duration programs, Canadians across the country will have more access to the skills and training they need to get good jobs and succeed in the job market,” said Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
The changes to Canada Student Grants follow consultations with stakeholders such as the National Association of Career Colleges, and will be implemented once the supporting regulations are approved.