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  • News
  • January 12, 2017

Ontario Provides Free Tuition for Eligible Students in the Hamilton Region

New OSAP is Removing Financial Barriers to College and University

NEWS                                                                                                      January 12, 2017


Ontario is making college and university more affordable for students and families in our Region and across the province by making tuition free for over 150,000 students.


Today MPP Ted McMeekin met with community members at the Flamborough YMCA to talk about how the province is transforming the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP).  The new OSAP will make average tuition free for students whose families make less than $50,000 a year. Students from families that earn more will also benefit from more generous grants and loans, and about 80 per cent of all OSAP recipients will graduate with less provincial debt.


More Ontario students are now graduating from postsecondary programs than ever before, but some people hesitate to apply for college or university because they worry about the cost. The new OSAP will help more students seek an advanced education, regardless of their family's income.


By entering basic information at, in just a few clicks students will learn whether they qualify for free tuition and how much aid they could receive from the new OSAP.


Expanding access to college and university is part of our government’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.





“We’re moving forward with the most ambitious reform of student financial assistance in North America because our government believes that a person’s ability to access postsecondary education should be based on their ability to learn, and not on their ability to pay. The new OSAP will provide over 150,000 students across the province with free average tuition.”

— Deb Matthews, Deputy Premier, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Digital Government




“We are creating access to post-secondary education so that more students from our community can go on to college or university regardless of their financial backgrounds. The new OSAP will build a more fair society by expanding access to education that helps all people in Ontario— helping our students learn skills they need for careers that contribute to Ontario’s economy.”

 -Ted McMeekin MPP, Ancaster Dundas Flamborough Westdale


"Creating a level playing field where all young people have access to the resources and programs they need to succeed is core to the mission of the YMCA. We know an academic achievement gap exists for children with financial barriers in their early formative years and we're working with our partners to address these gaps across our communities. Today's announcement recognizes these needs continue beyond the early years and provides a bridge to improve access to postsecondary education."

-Jim Commerford, President & CEO, YMCA of Hamilton|Burlington|Brantford


“McMaster shares  the province's  goal of ensuring enhanced and improved access to postsecondary education.  As one of the world’s top universities it is important we work together to remove roadblocks to education.  Our ability to make the next great discovery, to innovate and to build a better province and country, requires a system that supports all capable students, regardless of their economic reality.”

- Sean VanKoughnett, Associate Vice President (Students and Learning) and Dean of Students


“Education has the power to transform lives. We witness these transformations firsthand and every day at Mohawk College. That’s why we are fully committed to putting a college education within reach of everyone in our community. By transforming the Ontario Student Assistance Plan, the Government of Ontario is lowering financial barriers and helping to make the dream of a Mohawk education a reality for many remarkable young people in our community.”

 – Mohawk College President Ron McKerlie





  • Numerous students enrolled at Mohawk College and McMaster University received financial aid from OSAP in 2015-16.
  • Students applying to college and university for September 2017 are the first to benefit from the new OSAP.
  • The new OSAP will allow mature students to qualify for more grants so they can go back to school to upgrade their skills.
  • If you are a single parent, have three children and earn $60,000 a year, for example, the new OSAP calculator will tell you that you are eligible for over $16,000 of non-repayable aid, making average university tuition free with money left over for books and fees.
  • Ontario will work closely with colleges and universities in Hamilton Region to ensure that families clearly see upfront the difference between the sticker price for tuition and what students would need to pay.
  • In 2014-15, Ontario issued almost $1.3 billion in grants and loans to students.







For further information, please contact Ted McMeekin 905-690-6552



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