Applying for student aid | Manitoba Student Aid

Program Updates

Manitoba Student Aid is committed to continuous improvement, with the goal of simplifying processes and enhancing student satisfaction. Every year changes are being implemented to further simplify the process of applying for and obtaining funding.

This year students will notice improvements to our online application, Student Aid Online portal, and Manitoba Student Aid forms.

Doubling of Canada Student Grant amounts

In response to increased financial need for the coming 2021 – 2022 school year, the maximum amount of Canada Student Grants will remain doubled.

The Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students will increase up to a maximum of $6,000 and the grant for part-time studies to $3,600.

The Canada Student Grants for Students with Permanent Disabilities and Students with Dependants will also be doubled.

The Skills Boost Top-up to the Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students Program will continue until July 2023

The Skills Boost Top-up Grant, intended to support older and non-traditional learners, has been extended until July 2023.

Students who are eligible for the Canada Student Grant for Full-Time Students and who have been out of secondary school for at least 10 years, may be eligible for this additional grant.

Interest-free Canada Student Loans

Effective April 2021, Canada Student Loans (CSLs) will be interest-free until March 31, 2022. Subject to Parliament approval, the Government of Canada has proposed to extend this measure until March 31, 2023. Loan holders are required to make their monthly payments, although federal interest will not be accumulating.

Manitoba Student Loans (MSLs) continue to be interest-free.

New Name: Canada Student Financial Assistance Program

The Canada Student Loans Program (CSLP) will be renamed the Canada Student Financial Assistance (CSFA) Program. This change was made to highlight the additional supports that they offer such as grants and zero percent interest rate.

Canada Student Loans Cap

The Canada Student Loan (CSL) limit will revert back to the original amount of up to $210 per week of study for the 2021 – 2022 school year.

Student and Spousal Contributions

Student and spousal contributions will be required for the 2021 – 2022 school year and will be used in the applicant’s assessment.

Improvements to Website and Online Portal

A usability evaluation was conducted to determine how to enhance the Manitoba Student Aid (MSA) website and online portal.

As a result, several improvements were made to the website and online portal including the following:

  • The Verification of Permanent Disability and the Application for Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment forms are now available in the student’s online portal
  • A fillable/printable PDF version of the full-time application is available on the MSA website for students who:
    • have already submitted a full-time application online and now need to submit a second full-time application for the same academic year
    • require the application in an alternate format
  • Improved the MSA home page by:
    • Changing the "Apply Now" label to "Create an Account"
    • Creating a Quick Access section with links to important webpages such as COVID-19 updates and MSA forms
    • Including a section called Important Information to highlight critical content
    • Adding a quick access link to the Repayment Assistance Plan (RAP) application
  • Processing times for full-time applications submitted online are now available in the Currently Processing section of the website
  • Information required to apply is displayed as an expanded checklist with the option to download a printer-friendly version
  • Website content in specific areas was improved to support and encourage self-service options
  • The definition of designation and an explanation on how a school or program is designated were added

Review of Family Income

The initial assessment to determine eligibility for Canada Student Grants (CSGs) is based on the previous year’s family income.

However, if there has been a significant change in family income, applicants may request a review to determine eligibility based on their current year’s income instead.

The flexibility to use current income instead of previous year’s income can result in significant changes to the applicant’s assessed need and eligibility for Canada Student Grants and Manitoba Bursary.