To combat the cost-of-living crisis, the Manitoba government has announced an over 40 per cent increase to the maximum benefit of the Manitoba student loan program.
The increase will take effect Aug. 1, raising the loan to $200 per week from its current amount of $140 weekly.
This increase is intended to offset increased financial hardship faced by rising expenses and to reduce financial barriers so that more students can pursue-post secondary education, noted Minister of Advanced Education and Training Sarah Guillemard in a media release.
“As the cost of living continues to increase, our government remains committed to making life more affordable for Manitobans,” Guillemard said.
“This increase will provide additional funding to students who have the highest financial need, so they can remain focused on their studies and achieve their educational goals.”
In a press release, UMSU welcomed the news but also noted that Manitoba students have waited far too long for a loan increase.
“UMSU believes that there is still more work to do to make post-secondary education affordable and we look forward to working with the provincial government in a spirit of collaboration,” the release read.
The provincial student loan maximum benefit has not been increased since the 2005-06 program year, however the increase will now bring the provincial student loan funding more in line with other jurisdictions.
Eligible students will also receive the federal government’s Canada Student Loan maximum increase of $210 to $300 weekly, as announced in March of this year.