Government Student Loans and Grants
Q. I have just come to B.C. from another province (or country). Can I apply for student aid through B.C.?
A. You are considered to be a B.C. resident when you have resided in BC for 12 continuous months (not including full-time post-secondary study). International students are not eligible, unless you have dual citizenship and meet the residency requirements as set by StudentAidBC.
Q. Where do I get an application for a student loan?
A. Go to www.StudentAidBC.ca and register to gain access to the online application.
Q. What is the deadline for applying for government loans and grants?
A. You should always apply early, at least 8 to 10 weeks before your classes begin. However, you can apply at any time up to 6 weeks before the end of the study period. Students at UFV must apply to StudentAidBC every term that they wish funding consideration. NOTE: You do not need to be registered into classes to apply for funding.
Q. How do I apply for Part-time Student Aid Funding?
A. Part-time application forms can be found online through the Form Library at www.StudentAidBC.ca. It is a fillable form that is designed to be completed online and then printed, signed, and dated. Completed forms should be delivered to the UFV Financial Aid and Awards office for processing.
Q. Is there funding for the Upgrading and University Preparation program, Adult Basic Education (ABE), English as a Second Language (ESL), or TASK?
A. Yes. Print and fill out the Adult Upgrading Grant Application . Completed forms should be delivered to the Financial Aid & Awards office for processing. Proof of income such as a copy of your CRA Notice of Assessment or T4 slips, pay stubs, ROE's or other proof of income if you have not filed must be attached to the application.
Qualifying for Government Student Loans
Q. Can I apply for government loans and grants if I am also going to be getting Employment Insurance, Training Allowances, Band funding etc. while I'm going to school?
A. Yes, government loans and grants top up your resources if there is a demonstrated financial need.
Q. Can I attend two institutions (eg. UFV and SFU) at the same time and recieve financial aid for studies at both?
A. Yes. Attending more than one post-secondary school at the same time is called a “split enrolment.” You would apply for your student loan at the institution where the majority of your studies are being taken (home institution). A split enrolment must be approved and courses must be an essential element of your program of study. A completed UFV Split Enrolment Form must be submitted to Financial Aid and Awards for approval.
Q. I defaulted on a previous student loan. Am I eligible to apply for a new student loan?
A. It is possible, but only after you receive a letter of clearance from the Canada Student Loan Program (National Student Loans Service Centre) and/or the province where you arranged your student loan. Contact Financial Aid and Awards for federal and province contact numbers. This process often takes up to one year.
Q. What is a MSFAA?
A. The Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement (MSFAA) is a legal agreement between you, the Province of British Columbia, and the Canada Student Loans Program about borrowing and repaying your student loans.
Q. What expenses will student loans cover?
A. Financial assistance is provided for direct educational costs only: moderate standard of living (room/board), tuition, books/supplies, transportation (to and from school), and some miscellaneous expenses.
Q. How many courses do I need to take before I qualify for a student loan?
A. You must take 60% course load (9 credits per semester), 40% (6 credits) for students with permanent disabilities. These credits must all be at a post-secondary level and in your program of choice. College prep or courses grade 12 or lower do not qualify.
Q. Will repeating a course impact my funding?
A. Yes, it could. Repeated/duplicates of courses you have previously received credits for will not be part of the minimum 60% or 40% (students with a permanent disabilities) course load. You can submit an appeal to StudentAidBC requesting that the repeat course be considered for funding. Be aware that this process can take between 4 to 6 weeks and that there is no guarantee of approval. Please contact the UFV Financial Aid and Awards office to make an appointment with a Financial Aid and Awards Advisor.
Q. When will I receive my student loan/grant? Will it come to me or to UFV?
A. Your student loan/grant funds are directly deposited into your bank account. The funds are usually available after the first day of classes if you meet all the requirements for the loan/grant.
Q. Is there a lifetime maximum funding limit for student loans?
A. Yes, please contact the UFV Financial and Awards office for more information.
Changes that Occur after the Original Application
Q. My financial situation has changed since I applied for my student loan, what should I do?
A. If there have been changes made to your assets, income, and/or living situation since you first submitted your original StudentAidBC application for the term, a Reassessment (Appendix 7) is required. This form can be found on StudentAidBC’s website, in the Form Library. Contact UFV Financial Aid and Awards office to receive help with the process.
Q. If I withdraw from school, drop or Audit/Challenge any courses, will my student funding be affected?
A. Yes. Contact UFV Financial Aid and Awards office BEFORE you do any changes to your course load.
Paying Back Student Loans
Q. Do I have to make payments on my student loans while I am in school?
A. No. Payments are not required until 6 months after you cease being a full-time student.
Q. What is Interest-Free Status and how do I apply for it?
A. While you are attending full-time studies you can be in “interest-free status”, meaning no interest is accumulated on your student loans and no payments are required during your study period. You must complete an interest-free application each term you wish to be considered for interest-free status and are not receiving new student loan funding.
**Note: Effective February 2019, B.C. student loan interest has been eliminated, however Canada student loans still accumulate interest.
There are two ways to place student loans into interest-free status:
- If you are approved for new student aid funding, you will automatically receive interest-free status on your previous student loans
- If you return to full-time studies and do not receive full-time funding (i.e. a full-time student loan), you must submit an electronic application through NSLSC On-Line Services.
Other Sources of Funding
Q. If I don't feel I will qualify for a Canada/B.C. Student loan, or if I have not been approved for a government student loan, are there other options available?
A. Yes. Most of Canada’s chartered banks offer lines of credit and special banking packages to Canadian students who have exhausted assistance possibilities through government and institutional sources. A co-signer is often required. Below you’ll find websites that offer a wealth of useful tips and information on student loans, bursaries, awards and scholarships. They’re well worth checking out, as you may discover a source of additional funds.
Scholarships, Bursaries, and Leadership Awards
Q. I am a future UFV student, are Entrance Scholarships available?
A. Yes. If you are enrolling at UFV in the academic year immediately following your high school graduation, you may qualify for a UFV Entrance Scholarship. Entrance scholarships are based on academic excellence, community/school involvement, volunteer experience and leadership endeavours. Visit UFV Financial Aid and Awards website for a list of Entrance scholarships the dates available and how to access the on-line application.
Q. What are Bursaries and how do I apply for them?
A. A bursary is a non-repayable gift and is awarded on the basis of financial need and satisfactory academic achievement (minimum 2.0 GPA). If you are a registered UFV student, you can apply for bursaries each semester. Visit UFV Financial Aid and Awards website for a list of bursaries, the dates available and how to access the online application.
Q. What are Scholarships and how do I apply for them?
A. Scholarships are monetary awards that recognize academic achievement. These merit-based awards are granted to undergraduate and graduate (post-degree) students who maintained a minimum of a 3.5 GPA. Visit UFV Financial Aid and Awards website for a list of scholarships, the dates available and how to access the online application.
Q. What are Leadership Awards and how do I apply for them?
A. Leadership/Service awards are monetary awards provided to both undergraduate and graduate (post-degree) students in good academic standing (minimum 3.0 GPA) who demonstrate leadership experience and volunteer commitments with the UFV community and/or external community, student leadership, or athletic or artistic achievement. Visit UFV Financial Aid and Awards website for a list of scholarships, the dates available and how to access the online application.