Canadian students are responsible for obtaining the appropriate loan application materials from the Canada Student Loans Program. The Government of Canada and most provincial or territorial governments work in partnership to deliver federal and provincial student loan programs. These partnerships help simplify the process for you to apply for, manage, and repay your student loans.
If a student is not eligible for such a loan, the College still requires the student to borrow the expected amount from one of the many banks offering student loans.
Students from Canada should complete their loan applications as early as possible in the summer so that they can negotiate the first half of their loan no later than December of the school year.
The Canada Student Loan is normally disbursed in two installments: one at the beginning of the fall semester, and one at the beginning of the spring semester. Normally, the loan disbursements are made directly to the student’s bank account. The student is then responsible for paying the Business Office at Thomas Aquinas College the appropriate loan amount each semester, as specified in his financial aid package.
Canada Student Loan programs don’t charge interest until you have left school. Interest accumulates from the month after you graduate or leave school, but payments are only required six months later. This is why it’s important to tell your loan providers that you are returning to school each year. Otherwise, they may contact you to have you start repaying your loan before you have finished school.
When it comes time to begin repaying your student loan, you can select a fixed interest rate or floating (variable) interest rate. For Canada Student Loans issued on or after August 1, 1995:
- the fixed interest rate is prime + 5% and;
- the floating rate is prime + 2.5%
- To apply for a Canada Student Loan, first get an application either through your high school or post-secondary institution or through the student financial assistance office of your province or territory of permanent residence. All provinces and territories now offer online applications.
- Fill out and send the application along with any documentation requested to your province or territory of permanent residence. You are a permanent resident of the province or territory where you have most recently lived for at least 12 consecutive months without having been a full-time student at a post-secondary institution.
- You must apply every year to be considered for a loan. As mentioned above, students from Canada should complete their loan application as early as possible in the summer so that they can negotiate the first half of their loan no later than December of the school year.
Additional information regarding the Canada Student Loans Program can be obtained online at https://www.canada.ca.