Students and their families are expected to contribute toward a postsecondary education. For all but about 15 per cent of college and university students, OSAP will cover the cost of tuition, books and school fees. For students with greater financial need than OSAP covers, Ontario introduced the Student Access Guarantee.
Through this guarantee, Ontario requires colleges and universities that receive public funding to provide enough financial aid to cover a student’s assessed needs for expenses directly related to his or her program, including books, tuition and mandatory fees, that are not fully met by OSAP.
Schools also strive to help students who may need additional financial assistance to help with living expenses or emergency situations. Schools can provide this funding through a combination of non-repayable sources, including bursaries, scholarships, work study programs or summer employment programs.
If you are applying to a first-entry program at a college or university directly from high school, you will automatically be considered for the Student Access Guarantee aid based on your OSAP application. If you qualify, the ministry will notify your school of how much aid they need to give you.
If you are in a second-entry program (e.g. law, medicine or graduate programs) and you need additional financial support, you need to apply to your school's financial aid office. The school will then decide what mix of repayable and non-repayable aid it will provide.
You should contact your institution's financial aid office for further information.