Financial Aid & Awards
Students may have access to a variety of funding sources to finance their education, including provincial loan programs, lines of credit, savings, part-time earnings, awards, and bursaries. For most students, it will be necessary to incur some debt, through access to government student assistance programs and a private line of credit with a financial institution.
Provincial Loan Programs
Generally, the first source of funding students should consider is federal and provincial student assistance programs. Most provinces use an integrated application process that allows you to access both federal and provincial programs using one application. Students may qualify for loan and/or grant funding issued by their home province. In order to be considered for grant assistance provided by the Faculty of Medicine and the Department of Physical Therapy, it is usually necessary for students to apply for and receive government loan funding. Students should submit their applications for government loan immediately after acceptance in order to ensure that funding is available by early September.
Ontario students can access details and the online application on the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) website. Generally, all students accepted to the PT program will have been out of high school for at least four years and will, therefore, be considered as an independent student, meaning parental financial information will not be considered as part of the application. This also applies to students who did not have an OSAP loan during their undergraduate degree.
Students from other Canadian provinces must apply for assistance from their home province. Access to the various provincial government application forms can be found at the University of Toronto Enrolment Services website.
Ontario Student Opportunity Grant
The Ontario Student Opportunity Grant (OSOG) is available to help students reduce their annual Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan (COISL) debt. The purpose of OSOG is to limit a student’s repayable COISL debt to $7,300 for a two-term academic year and $10,950 for a three-term academic year (as of the 2011-12 academic year). As a result, the amount of OSOG awarded to each student is based on the total amount of COISL they were eligible to receive for the academic year. It is available at the end of each academic year for qualified students. Information on the Ontario Student Opportunity Grant can be found at the OSAP website.
Awards & Bursaries Distributed by the PT Department
Through the generosity of our donors, including private individuals and corporate bodies, the Department of Physical Therapy is able to offer a limited number of merit-based scholarships and bursaries. Merit-based awards are based on various criteria, including academic standing, extracurricular involvement, and year of study. Bursaries are on financial need. All awards and bursaries are for current students only, and students must complete an application to be considered for this funding. Students will be notified by email when the application is available, which is generally in the fall and summer terms. The monetary value of all scholarships is variable and should, in most cases, be considered of a supplementary nature.
The Department distributes a number of awards to graduating students at a Convocation Reception hosted by the Department of Physical Therapy and the PT&OT Alumni Association. Most of these awards have been established by private donors and corporate bodies. While the majority of the recipients of these awards are chosen by the Evaluation and Awards Committee and require no application, students will be notified of any awards requiring nominations or applications via email.
Awards & Bursaries Distributed by U of T
The University of Toronto distributes funding to current students through various departments, including Enrolment Services, the School of Graduate Studies and the Faculty of Medicine.
While the Department of Physical Therapy notifies current students of any external award announcements it receives, and maintains a limited listing of relevant external awards, students are responsible for finding funding sources and applying directly to award agencies. Students should start looking for external awards as soon as they decide to apply to the PT program, as some awards have early deadlines for the following year. Students should also keep looking for potential funding after they are enrolled.
Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS)
The Ontario Graduate Scholarship Program recognizes academic excellence in graduate studies at the master’s and doctoral levels in all disciplines of academic study. The OGS program at U of T is jointly funded by the Province of Ontario and the University of Toronto and is worth up to $15,000 for a three term academic year. The Department of Physical Therapy, jointly with the U of T’s School of Graduate Studies (SGS), is responsible for administering the award.