B.C. budget 2020 brings in new grant to help post secondary students cover tuition costs
Grant goes into effect in fall and more than 40,000 students will be eligible
As part of its 2020 budget, the provincial government announced college and university students in British Columbia will be eligible for a new grant of up to $4,000 to help cover their tuition costs.
The grant goes into effect this fall and more than 40,000 students studying at public colleges and universities will be eligible.
For students in programs under two years long, the BC Access Grant will provide up to $4,000 a year.
For those in programs longer than two years, they will be eligible for up to $1,000 a year on top of the $3,000 that full-time students can get through the Canada Student Grant.
The new grant will cost the government $24 million over three years.
Tanysha Klassen with the B.C. Federation of Students says students are going to "very excited" about this announcement.
"We've been campaigning on and off campus for years about this, so it's going to be really nice to go back to our members and tell them this is something we won together," Klassen said.
"The people that really need the money to get through their education are going to be the ones that get it."
A first for the province
Finance Minister Carole James says the new grant marks a first for the province, as it will be available to part-time students and those enrolled in programs of less than two years.
"This will help people land good-paying jobs in high-demand fields like early childhood education, health care and the skilled trades,'' she said in her budget speech on Tuesday.
"This grant is about investing in our shared future."
The budget says more than 860,000 jobs will open in B.C. over the next decade, and more than 75 per cent of all jobs will require some post-secondary education or training.
With files from Chad Pawson