The University of Toronto is working to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including providing emergency financial support and work-study opportunities for students. This page provides resources to access those university financial aid supports as well as provincial and federal government programs. We will update this page as new initiatives are introduced.
The Emergency Undergraduate Grant is intended to assist current U of T undergraduate domestic and international students impacted by COVID-19 and who need immediate short-term financial relief because of unexpected expenses. This grant is open to both part-time and full-time students.
The SGS Emergency Grant program aims to assist currently registered, full-time graduate students who encounter an unanticipated serious financial emergency. The grant is intended to help provide immediate short-term relief of such financial need and is not intended as a source of long-term funding.
The SGS Emergency Loan alleviates temporary cash flow problems for students who are expecting the release of funds in the near future (i.e. 30 to 120 days) from employment, a major award instalment, OSAP (Ontario Students’ Assistance Program), teaching assistantship, or research assistantship payment, etc. All graduate students who encounter an unanticipated serious financial emergency are encouraged to meet with the SGS Graduate Student Financial Advisor to discuss options and determine eligibility.
Please speak to your faculty’s financial assistance office for further information on faculty specific programs. Examples of faculty specific funding include the following:
Faculty of Arts and Science Graduate Students
The Faculty of Arts and Science has a number of programs to mitigate the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic a full list can be found on the Faculty of Arts and Science website.
Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing Graduate Students
Established in 2018, the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing Student Crisis Fund assists currently enrolled students who encounter an unanticipated serious financial crisis beyond their control.
Faculty of Information
The Faculty of Information Grant program is open to FoI students who encounter an unanticipated, urgent, and/or serious financial need. Students who have exhausted all other options can apply online.
The Ontario provincial government has expanded access to its existing Emergency Assistance program under the current provisions of Ontario Works. Ontario residents with limited income, assets or credit who are in a crisis or an emergency situation can apply for short-term assistance. Those who currently receive assistance from Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program are not eligible.
The Government of Canada offers student grants and loans to full-time and part-time students. The federal government has doubled the maximum Canada Student Grant amount to $6,000 for full-time students, and $3,600 for part-time studies.
The government has also increased the cap on Canada Student Loans to a maximum of $350 per week.
For the 2020-2021 school year, students will not be required to make their fixed student contribution or spousal contribution. For students looking to take a medical or parental leave, Canada Student Loans has suspended payments and interest on loans for 6 months, which can be extended up to a total of 18 months of leave.
The GST/HST credit is a tax-free quarterly payment that helps individuals and families with low and modest incomes offset all or part of the GST or HST they pay. The Canadian Government is providing a one-time special increase that will double the maximum annual GST/HST tax credit for the 2019-20 benefit year.
The Federal Student Work Experience Program (FSWEP) provides full-time students access to student jobs offered by the federal government. The program aims to provide students with opportunities to learn about the federal government and gain valuable experience while developing and improving their employability skills.
Training award recipients may defer the start date of their award for four months at a time due to COVID-19 reasons. Support will also be provided to those needing to scale back to part-time research, as a result of the pandemic.
Employment Insurance provides regular benefits to individuals who have lost their job or were laid off without pay, and are actively looking for work.
Undergraduate students who meet insurable hour thresholds may qualify for EI benefits.
Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) is a two-week income support for those who are not entitled to receive EI. You might be eligible if you are not employed or self-employed for reasons related to COVID-19, or if your average weekly income dropped by at least 50% compared to the previous year due to COVID-19. Support periods are two weeks long, you must reapply after each period, for up to a maximum of 13 periods.
The Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) is a one-week benefit to support employed and self-employed individuals who are unable to work because they are sick or need to self-isolate due to COVID-19. You may apply for up to a total of 2 weeks between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.
You might be eligible for the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) if you are unable to work because you must care for a child under 12 or family member because of COVID-19 closures of schools or care facilities, OR if the dependent is sick and/or required to quarantine or is at high risk.
Workers may apply for one week of support at a time and must reapply if the situation persists, up to maximum of 26 weeks per household.
The Vice Provost Students COVID-19 Information pages contain the latest updates, information and guidelines to support your international student experience, whether you are studying remotely or in Canada. International students can find support on the following topics below:
If you have any further questions, each campus has a team of advisors that are happy to support you:
As of October 20, 2020, international students enrolled at the University of Toronto and who have met certain conditions are eligible to enter Canada. To see if you meet the conditions now required for entry to Canada, please see the FAQ for International Students: Entry to Canada & Pre-arrival for further information.
International students enrolled full time in a degree program are eligible to work on-campus as many hours as they want, off-campus a maximum of 20 hours/week during the academic year and full-time during scheduled breaks. Please visit our Work permits page for more information.
International students providing essential services are temporarily allowed to work more than 20 hours per week if you are:
To see if your work is considered an essential service or function, check the Guide on Essential Services and Functions in Canada During the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Ontario’s Emergency Assistance program provides additional benefits for those who have children.
Employment Insurance maternity and parental benefits provide financial assistance to people who are away from work because they’re pregnant or have recently given birth and parents who are away from work to care for their newborn or newly adopted child.
The Work Study Program offers paid, on-campus positions that provide you with an opportunity to deepen your knowledge, strengthen your skills and explore how your academic studies translate to career possibilities. All Work Study positions are CCR recognized.