Student Loans

Student Loans
Student loans in​ Canada are provided by a​ joint Federal and Provincial program with the​ amount of​ and eligibility for a​ loan different between the​ Provinces and so depends upon the​ Province you​ are a​ resident of​ (your Province or​ territory of​ residence is​ decided by where you​ have lived for the​ last 12 months consecutively whilst NOT a​ student) .​
You may,​ however,​ attend any educational establishment in​ the​ country provided both the​ establishment and the​ program of​ your choice are listed by the​ assistance office in​ your province.
There are several different types of​ funding for post secondary education that include grants and bursaries (which you​ wouldn’t have to​ pay back) but there are 2 main types of​ student loan – the​ Federal and Provincial programs .​
Whichever type of​ loan you​ wish to​ apply for it​ all has to​ be started off by applying to​ the​ Provincial/Territorial Assistance office for the​ Province you​ are officially a​ resident of.
The main attraction of​ a​ student loan is​ that although they are REAL loans that do have to​ be repaid,​ they are interest free while you​ remain enrolled in​ an​ eligible education program .​
Once you​ graduate/leave education the​ repayment terms are set (normally low interest and you​ agree the​ repayment term) and you​ begin to​ pay them back .​
Banks and other lending establishments are no longer involved in​ offering new loans as​ all funding is​ provided by the​ federal or​ provincial governments.
Quebec,​ Northwest Territories and Nunavut are NOT involved in​ the​ Canada Student Loans program and have their own systems .​
If you​ are a​ resident of​ one of​ these 3 provinces or​ Territories then you​ need to​ contact the​ particular office for that Province.
To start the​ ball rolling with the​ application for a​ loan there are several processes that you​ should consider .​
Your eligibility is​ the​ most important – both you​ (the applicant) and the​ course you​ wish to​ undertake must meet the​ criteria laid down .​
The applicant: the​ main factor of​ eligibility is​ whether you​ are intending to​ be a​ full or​ part time student .​
If you​ are a​ part time student (20 – 59% of​ full course load) you​ may only apply for federal assistance though you​ would apply through the​ provincial/territorial assistance office.
A full time student (60% + of​ a​ full course load) may apply through the​ same offices but will be considered for both Federal and Provincial support (depending upon the​ province in​ question) though this would have to​ repay both the​ loans .​
The difference between the​ Provinces and Territories is​ prevalent here as​ these provinces: Alberta,​ British Columbia,​ Manitoba,​ New Brunswick,​ Newfoundland and Labrador,​ Nova Scotia,​ Prince Edward Island and the​ Yukon all would entail paying the​ loans back separately .​
If you​ are from Ontario or​ Saskatchewan then you​ would make one payment back to​ the​ NSLSC which would cover the​ total amount borrowed from both the​ federal and provincial programs.
The course you​ wish to​ enroll on​ must be listed on​ the​ Master List of​ Designated educational Institutions – it​ is​ strongly advised that you​ ensure the​ establishment you​ wish to​ attend is​ recognized by your provincial provider and the​ course choices meet the​ necessary requirements before you​ commit to​ it .​
This also applies if​ you​ wish to​ attend an​ overseas establishment.
Your personal financial status will determine the​ amount of​ assistance you​ will be offered with the​ Federal loan system covering up to​ 60% of​ the​ total you​ are assessed as​ needing and the​ provincial system contributing up to​ the​ remaining 40% .​
Your needs are assessed by the​ provincial office when you​ apply as​ they handle the​ initial application and will forward you​ the​ loan documents .​
Once the​ Provincial or​ territorial Student Assistance office has received and processed your application,​ it​ will establish the​ amount of​ loan you​ are entitled to​ apply for and carry out credit checks .​
Once approved,​ your Canada Student Loan will be administered by the​ National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC) through to​ its termination (full repayment) .​
This agency is​ responsible for all loans supplied since 1st August 2000 and has two distinct sections .​
The Public Institutions Division (looking after anyone attending a​ course at​ a​ Public facility such as​ a​ University or​ Community college) and the​ Private Institutions Division (for those who are receiving instruction at​ a​ privately funded facility like a​ technical college or​ trade school).

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