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Thompson Rivers University provides non-repayable, BC government financial aid for priority health programs

Health-care student grants

Wading through financial aid forms for university programs can be a challenge for students and families, especially if they are looking to apply for specific grants.

That's not the case for students accessing the Priority Health grants at Thompson Rivers University’s (TRU) Kamloops or Williams Lake campuses, or online with Open Learning; their user-friendly aid offers couldn't be easier to find and fill out.

TRU offers choices for students seeking health-care programs, and provides various funding and financial aid options. With programs eligible for these grants, no assessment is required to receive these recruitment and retention grants, which are available to new and ongoing students.

“With the market being where it's at in terms of career opportunities, combined with the opportunity to get—in most of these cases—$2,000 per year off of your education, it's probably never been a better time to consider these programs," says Gordon Down, TRU's student awards and financial aid director.

Qualifying health programs and grant values

The value of the non-refundable grants for students interested in pursuing the online Medical Lab Assistant program or the on-campus Respiratory Therapy program is $2,000 per program year, per eligible participant, where only program years—not prerequisite years—are eligible.

"All students have to do is be admitted to the program and then enrol, and they'll receive a $2,000 credit against their account," Down says. "As new enrolments come on, we're applying a grant."

The total maximum value of this grant per student over the duration of their program is $2,000 per program year. For the one-year Medical Lab Assistant program, $2,000 would be the total grant available, and for the fast-track Respiratory Therapy program, the grant would be $4,000 over the two years of study.

"Students must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents and be studying in B.C., which is really only relevant to the Medical Lab Assistant program because Respiratory Therapy is only offered on site," Down says. "Also, you can't be specifically tuition-funded from another source."

Indigenous students interested in pursuing the Practical Nursing diploma program at the Williams Lake School of Nursing, or the Master of Nursing-Nurse Practitioner program at the main Kamloops campus can receive $5,000 in non-refundable grants per program year, per eligible participant, with a total maximum of $10,000. Only program years—not prerequisite years—are eligible.

Students who don’t meet program requirements can upgrade; some programs allow students to take upgrading courses while they also study in first-year classes.

Funding is in place to support the cost of these grants in their qualifying programs between Sept. 1, 2023, and Oct. 1, 2025.

At TRU, it’s your move

These grant opportunities launched in September, and TRU has already paid out almost $500,000.

"In talking to students about the grants, they tell us how happy they are to receive the assistance and that it just makes their education goal that much more attainable when there's not the same financial requirement," Down says.

"There's never been a better time to get into the health-care industry and receive funding to upgrade your skills. I encourage anyone interested to jump in and make a move if that's what looks good for your career development."

Applications are now open for fall 2024. Prospective students can easily access everything they need to know, and they can even discover TRU programs from home.

Anyone can attend a virtual info session and get their questions answered. During the session, attendees can talk with TRU faculty and staff about programs, career outcomes, student supports, how to apply and campus life.

For more information, visit tru.ca.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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