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How to Apply for a Student Loan in British Columbia

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    f you’re a resident of British Columbia and you want to pursue higher education, there are many options available to help you with funding, which can be a key stepping stone to help you achieve your education and career goals. 

    Being from this province means that you have many different options and resources available to take advantage of, which are not only limited to loans. You can have grants, scholarships, and many other financial supports available to help you on your journey in post-secondary education. 

    In this blog, we’ll discuss student aid in British Columbia, what you need to know and how it can help you with your tuition and funding for your college or university years. You can also learn how to get student loans in Alberta and Ontario

    Understanding Student Aid 

    British Columbia is one of the provinces in Canada that offers integrated loans between both the provincial government and federal government. While you’ll be getting loans from both of the lenders i.e. British Columbia and Canada, you will receive it as a single loan to streamline the delivery. 

    Students will sign a joint agreement between the two and have simply one point of contact to help manage their student loans. When students complete their education and need to repay their student loans, they need to make one simple payment towards a consolidated loan balance. 

    In essence, student loans are a resource that is available to Canadian students across all provinces and territories. If you want to attain your educational and career goals in a timely manner, you can utilize student loans to your benefit, along with the additional monetary funding that you don’t need to pay back at the end such as scholarships, grants, bursaries, and more. 

    You can also find more ways to pay for your college education

    Full-Time vs Part-Time Loans

    Full-time 

    In order to apply for a full-time student loan in British Columbia, you must be enrolled in at least 60 percent of a full-time course load or 40 percent if you have a prolonged or persistent disability. Usually, this means that you must be enrolled in at least three classes for the semester, depending on the institution. 

    With a full-time student loan, you can get funding for not only the tuition for your classes, but also books, equipment, supplies, transportation, and more. When you are first approved for the full-time loan, you must then fill out a Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement form, which is a legal agreement between you, the province, and the federal government so you can borrow and repay your loan in the future

    Part-time 

    You can also receive a student loan if you are only taking part-time studies at a designated institution. To be eligible for this loan, British Columbia must have been your place of residence 12 months prior to you enrolling in post-secondary education. 

    Unlike the full-time student loan, the part-time loan does not account for living expenses but does cover other educational expenses. Most of the funding for part-time studies comes from the Government of Canada, rather than from the provincial B.C. government. 

    How to Know if Your Program is Eligible 

    To receive any loan, you need to make sure that your post-secondary institution or program is eligible to receive funding. Receiving a loan is not limited to colleges and universities in B.C., you can apply for programs across the country and even abroad, and receive funding from the province if you have been a resident. 

    You can check your school designation to find out whether you can receive funding for it or not.

    How to Apply for a B.C. Student Loan 

    Full-Time

    To apply for a student loan you must have a valid B.C. Service Card to have your identity verified that way. If you do not have one or are new to the process, you can set up the B.C. Services Card app to access the loan application through the online dashboard at Student Aid B.C. 

    Once that’s done, you can select the school and program you want to attend and enter the study period for when you will be a student there and need the funding. You’ll want to calculate how much money you’ll need to attend the program of your choice. You can fill out the financial need formula and use a budget worksheet to do so. 

    You will need to apply through the Student Aid B.C. Dashboard by logging in with your BC Services Card and completing the online application there. That is where you can keep track of your applications, be notified of your funding approval, and get a breakdown of the money that you are receiving. Once you apply, it takes about six weeks to process the application. 

    Part-Time

    The process of applying for part-time loans is much different than a full-time loan. For part-time, you need to enroll in the program that you want to attend (ensure it is designated). Then, you will need to download a part-time studies application for the federal assistance programs. The study information section of the form must be completed by the financial aid office at the school you are attending. They will then forward the application to Student Aid B.C. 

    What’s Next

    Interested in getting post-secondary education? ABM College offers diploma programs in business, healthcare, and technology that will get you hired and ready to utilize your skills in the workforce. Browse our diploma programs to find your right fit. 

    Eligible for Student Aid B.C. funding, you can get your designation in as little as 33 weeks and start your new and exciting career. Contact us today for more information or find out more about different student loans and funding options on our blog

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