COVID-19 Federal Financial Aid for Students

A $9 billion financial aid package for post-secondary students was announced by the Federal Government on April 22, 2020.  This aid package includes the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) and the Canada Student Service Grant (CSSG) funding for student volunteers, amongst other programs.  Like previous government announcements during this pandemic, additional details are forthcoming.

This legislation has passed with some modifications. Information can be found here.

Canada Emergency Student Benefit

  • Provides students with $1,250 a month, or $1,750 a month if they have a disability or are taking care of someone else.
  • Runs from May to August.
  • Those who will be starting post-secondary studies this fall, are currently pursuing their degrees, or have graduated since December of 2019 are eligible.
  • Students may earn up to $1,000 a month and still receive the benefit.
  • Payments are made through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

Canada Student Service Grant

  • Students who volunteer in the charitable or not-for-profit sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic can receive between $1,000 and $5,000 towards their education, depending on the number of hours they volunteer.
  • Federal student grants will be doubled for the 2020/2021 school year.

Additional Measures

  • The maximum weekly amount that can be provided through the Canada Student Loan Program will be increased from $210 to $350 for the 2020/2021 school year.
  • Student financial assistance eligible will be broadened by removing the expected student’s and spouse’s contributions in 2020/2021.
  • $75 million in supports for Indigenous post-secondary students.
  • $291 million for federal granting councils to extend graduate research scholarships and post-doctoral fellowships were also announced.

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