Financial Assistance

We believe that the financial barriers that come with being a student shouldn’t stop you from achieving your goals. We want to do everything we can to help you receive the assistance you may need, at any point during your undergraduate university career. The UTSU offers the following services to help alleviate financial burdens for students: Student Aid (7 grants and bursaries to help with costs from your books to transit and more), Dollar for Child Care, Free Codes for Top Hat to reduce your microtransaction fees and Tax Clinics (volunteers help you submit your taxes for free).

We are actively working on improving and expanding ways we can help.

Student Aid

The UTSU Student Aid Program offers the following bursaries to those in financial need:

  1. The Book and Academic Supplies Bursary reimburses students for some of the costs associated with buying books or other academic supplies such as laptops or notebooks during the academic year. The average disbursement is $100, with applications for larger items such as laptops being assessed at a maximum of $200.
  2. The Exam Deferral Bursary reimburses students for some of the costs associated with deferring a fall or spring exam during the academic year.
    The maximum disbursement is $70.
  3. The Academic Pursuits Grant assists students with the financial costs of expanding their academic experiences (e.g., attending a conference).
    The maximum disbursement is $100.
  4. The Health and Wellness Bursary provides financial support to students planning who need additional help covering the costs of seeing a therapist or paying for prescription drugs. Applicants will be asked to demonstrate that they are already using the UTSU’s Health and Dental Plan, or another form of coverage.
    The maximum disbursement is $200, however the average is $50.
  5. The Accessibility Bursary is meant to help students with accessibility needs get through university smoothly.
    The maximum disbursement is $100.
  6. The Transit Bursary is built for commuter students to help them pay for the cost of a PRESTO card.
    The maximum disbursement is $100.
  7. The Emergency Bursary is available to students who find themselves in sudden financial need, whether that be an inability to pay rent, needing groceries or sudden loss of income. The maximum disbursement is $250.

To apply please complete the Student Aid Program Form.

New UTSU Scholarship Program

  1. UTSU Professional Faculties Leadership Scholarship – 3 x $1500
    Awarded to full-time Professional Faculty undergraduate students enrolled in one of the 10 professional faculty who have demonstrated initiative to make a positive impact on the professional faculties community through an extracurricular leadership role.Students must demonstrate financial need and have a minimum GPA of 1.70 in one of the following faculties:

    • John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design
    • Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering
    • Faculty of Dentistry
    • Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education
    • Faculty of Law
    • Faculty of Music
    • Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing
    • Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
    • Temerty Faculty of Medicine
    • Toronto School of Theology
  2. UTSU Campus Involvement Scholarship – 5 x $1500
    Awarded to full-time undergraduate students who have demonstrated initiative to making a positive impact on promoting a positive student experience through involvement in extracurricular leadership roles. Students must demonstrate financial need and have a minimum cGPA of 1.70 and have at least 2 full semester’s worth of prior leadership experience.
  3. UTSU Equity Initiative Scholarship – 3 x $1500
    Awarded to full-time undergraduate students who have demonstrated significant initiative in making a positive impact on promoting equity initiatives on campus. This award is given to students who have demonstrated outstanding achievements in promoting accessibility, equity, diversity, and inclusivity. Students must demonstrate financial need and have a minimum cGPA of 1.70.
  4. UTSU First-Year Engagement Scholarship – 3 x $1500
    Awarded to full-time, first-year undergraduate students who have demonstrated significant engagement in making a positive impact on student life.Students must demonstrate financial need, have no more than 5 completed FCE’s and a minimum cGPA of 1.70Students are encouraged to apply for these opportunities – especially at a time when the need for financial aid can be so great. Please direct any additional questions you may have to hello@utsu.ca.

To apply please complete the UTSU Scholarship form.

Dollar for Child Care

We offer this needs-based bursary as a way to help students pay for dependent care. All UTSU members are eligible to apply.

Free Codes for Top Hat

The Microtransaction Access Program was established to help alleviate financial barriers for UTSU members and improve access to education.

If your course/courses require you to purchase a Top Hat code and you self identify as a student in financial need, please fill out your details and submit a statement of intent. Deadline to fill out the application is September 25, 2020 and may be extended based on popular demand. Codes will be disseminated in batches through email.

Tax Clinics

Each year, UTSU helps over 600 students file their taxes at its annual tax clinic that provides members with FREE 1-on-1 assistance in filing their income tax returns.

When: The clinic runs from the end of March throughout April (earlier appointments will be available for students who need to file tax claims for previous years).

Where: Virtual Appointments will be held over Zoom.

The appointment booking portal (only open during tax season) opens mid-March and students can book appointments up to seven days in advance by registering online at calendly.com/2020-taxes.

More information is available at utsu.ca/tax/ 

Social Insurance Number (SIN) and relevant paperwork:

Documents to Bring (If Applicable):

  • CRA Notice of Assessment
  • T4: Employment Income
  • T4A: Scholarships, Grants, Bursaries
  • T4RSP: Registered Retirement Savings Plan
  • RC62: Universal Child Care Benefit

Expense Documents to Bring (If Applicable):

  • T2202A: Tuition, Education & Textbook Amounts (ACORN)
  • Interest for Student Loans or Union Dues
  • Property Taxes or Rent Receipts (Not Lease)
  • T778: Child Care Expenses
  • Medical Expenses
  • Charitable or Political Donations

Note: UTSU volunteers may assist with simple tax situations only, we may be unable to help when: a student makes more than $40,000 annually; are self-employed; have capital gains or losses; has foreign income over $1000; individual has declared bankruptcy; or $1000 or more appears in Box 48 on T4 form.

People looking to file for family members must have their family members (and their relevant documentation) present at the appointment. Newcomers to Canada should have their date of arrival to Canada and immigration status available.

The clinics are held in partnership with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) who provides training for volunteers under the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program. This free service is reliant on volunteer participation and runs roughly 6 weeks.

Students who wish to volunteer with this service can send in resumes starting in December by emailing: services@utsu.ca.

The Canadian Federation of Students and UFile ONLINE have joined together to provide FREE online tax preparation and filing for all Canadian post-secondary students. To be eligible for this special offer, the student must be a resident of Canada, have tuition fees and have attended school for at least one month during the tax year being prepared.

To access the free UFile tax service:

  1. Student signs in to a new or existing UFile account for the current tax year.
  2. Enter tuition fees and months at school and click NEXT.
  3. Scroll to locate the “Special offer” form in UFile’s left-hand navigation.
  4. Enter the following Canadian Federation of Students “Free for Students” special offer code: CFS1981 and click NEXT.
  5. Enter tax information and then print or NETFILE the income tax return.

APUSUTGSU also runs a FREE Tax Clinic for their members – services@apus.ca.

If a student will transfer tuition credits to their parents or grandparents, they may prefer to have their tax return completed together with theirs. Tuition credits that are not used or transferred to a supporting person in the current year will be carried forward by UFile for future use by the student.

Other free tax clinics may be researched (by location) on the Canada Revenue Agency website by searching “Find a tax clinic in your area.”

For more information contact hello@utsu.ca