Money Matters

This page includes information on all things financial that are relevant this academic year. It will be updated from time to time to reflect short- and medium-term issues around university and money as relevant to a semester.

Click on any of the sections below to expand them. If you have any questions or feedback on the information here, please let Daniela Pirraglia know by email.

Innis Emergency Grant Applications

Innis College has a committee that considers requests for emergency financial aid from students during the months of September through to the end of March 2017.

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The committee considers all the circumstances of a student’s situation, from whether the student has tapped into all the financial support that might be possible (student loans, etc.) and the nature of the student’s expenses.

The process is simple:

  1. Complete the the U of T Grant Application, which can be found on ACORN. This application is available from October to March annually.
  2. You will be prompted via email to book an appointment to see Daniela at the Innis Registrar’s Office, 416-978-2513, so the application can be reviewed together.

If you are an international student, sometimes emergency aid is possible depending on the circumstances, but the process is somewhat different. Book an appointment to see Daniela to get more info.
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OSAP for 2016-2017

OSAP will largely be automatic in terms of receiving your second installment, but you may also need to update OSAP or even apply if you didn’t in the Fall.

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If you are receiving OSAP for the full Fall/Winter study period, the second installment is released with the University’s confirmation of your full-time course load for January.

During the fall term is a good time to verify that the information you provided OSAP, especially around your study period income, is correct, so consider updating OSAP by logging into your OSAP application and/or visiting Enrolment Services if you need to revise such figures.

There are deadlines to both apply to OSAP and to submit OSAP appeal requests. We recommend submitting such requests prior to the stated deadlines, to take processing time into account.

  • Appeal/Document Deadline (40 days before the end of study period)
  • Application Deadline (60 days before the end of study period)

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Summer 2017 OSAP

Thinking of taking summer courses and may need OSAP? Here are details on how to qualify — and apply.

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Summer OSAP applications are generally available in March. When considering summer OSAP, you must first answer the following question: did you receive OSAP this past 2017 Winter Session?

If YES, then you fill out an online form, which extends 2016-2017 OSAP application to include weeks in the summer. The form will be available from Enrolment Services during the Winter session. In this case, you can qualify for OSAP if you take at least 1.5 credits spread out over the whole summer, or you can get OSAP for half of the summer if you take 1.0 credit either in the “F” or the “S” part of the summer session. (You can also qualify with one F1 half-course, for that very small duration of time.)

If NO, then you are applying for OSAP for the first time and under the 2016-2017 cycle, so you have to do it online. In this case, you only qualify for OSAP if you are doing a minimum of 1.5 credits spread out over the summer. Doing courses just in the “F” or “S” part of the summer doesn’t qualify, because half the summer doesn’t by itself meet the minimum number of weeks needed for OSAP.

The table below (also available from Enrolment Services) shows the minimum credits as described above, and the minimum credits required if you have a registered permanent disability (with OSAP) — the minimum load is lower to qualify for OSAP. The minimum credit load to qualify for OSAP is the same as the minimum number of credits you must pass to meet OSAP’s definition of “satisfactory academic progress”.

Period of Study General Requirements Requirements for students with documented permanent disabilities
Minimum credits to receive OSAP Must pass Minimum credits to receive OSAP Must pass
May to August 1.5 1.5 1.0 1.0
May to June only* 1.0 1.0 0.5 0.5
July to August only* 1.0 1.0 0.5 0.5
F1 course* 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.5

* Must have received OSAP funds at the University of Toronto for the 2017 Winter Session to be considered.

If you are using the online summer extension form (applying for OSAP to continue into the summer from current OSAP application at U of T), the deadline to submit the request to qualify for a summer fee deferral is 10 April 2017.

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OSAP and Graduation

If you are graduating in June you may be wondering what happens in terms of OSAP and OSAP repayment afterward.

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A great starting resource is the answer to the FAQ, “When Do I Start Repaying My Loans?”

The National Student Loans Service Centre also offers ongoing online webinars on repayment. These webinars are a great opportunity to get all the info you need on repaying your loans at your convenience.

It is worth also reviewing the information as presented on this detailed page found on OSAP’s own site (and also check out the repayment calculator).

Here are a few key points to consider:

  • The loan is consolidated (and repayment begins) six months after you cease being a full-time student. Just before that happens you will receive a letter outlining the terms (make sure your current address is known).
  • Calling the National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC) is incredibly useful to discuss terms and ask questions: 1-888-815-4514. If repayment is a cause of concern or worry, there are some options you can pursue to lighten the load for a time. Do not be shy about calling them.

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Upcoming Scholarships: Innis Awards

The deadline for a number of Innis-based awards requiring applications is at the beginning of April 2017.

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The spring is the season for several Innis-based scholarships that require an application. The vast majority of these are leadership awards — awards that recognize volunteer extracurricular contributions to communities, whether at Innis, on campus, or off. While the deadline to apply for the awards below is generally in April, the exact date should be available in February or early March.

Graduating Students

If you are graduating there are a number of leadership awards available to you:

  • Innis College Recognition Awards
  • Innis Graditude Scholarship
  • Wasser Achievement Awards
  • Wasser Leadership Scholarships
  • Mary Ann Duffy Graduating Student Award

Applications are available in the winter term every year, with a deadline of early April. One application is required to be considered for all of the above awards.

Returning Students

Returning students also have a slate of leadership awards they can apply for, all in one application:

  • Innis College Alumni Scholarship
  • Edward Moss Davidson and Hilda Ruth Rous Davidson Scholarship
  • Edward Moss Davidson and Hilda Ruth Rous Davidson OSOTF Award
  • Harold Innis Foundation Prize
  • Wasser Achievement Awards
  • Wasser Leadership Awards
  • Innis College GRADitude OSOTF II Award
  • Audrey Perry Student Life Award

Note that two of the awards — the ones with “OSOTF” in the name — requires that you have financial need AND Ontario residency as requirements, both shown by OSAP. If you feel you qualify as having financial need, even without OSAP, book an appointment by calling 416-978-2513 to talk about your situation with the Financial Aid Advisor at Innis College. You could submit a grant application to show your budget, which then could be considered by the Bursary Sub-Committee.

Another more specialized award for returning students is the Hungarian Helicon OSOTF Award, which requires not only a grant application but the submission of an original academic work that engages with themes/issues associated with Hungary.

Awards Relating to the Innis Residence

If you currently live/have previously lived in the Innis Residence, and you have demonstrated leadership while living in the residence, you may be eligible for the Taddle Creek Residence Life Award or the M. Fuzz Friend Memorial Award. Returning students are eligible for both the Taddle Creek Residence Life Award and the M. Fuzz Friend Memorial Award, while graduating students are eligible only for the M. Fuzz Friend Memorial Award. These awards have a separate application.

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Upcoming Scholarships: U of T

While this isn’t an exhaustive list, here’s some info on scholarships you may want to keep an eye on.

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There are other awards that come out of the University — some are based University-wide and some come from the larger Faculty of Arts and Science. Here’s a few deadlines, and awards related to them.

31 January through 30 June 2017

University of Toronto Award Competitions are compiled on the Enrolment Services website. There’s a wide range of awards here and some of them may not apply to undergraduate students. Review them out carefully and see if you can shortlist any that might apply to you. Links in the table let you click through to discrete pages on specific awards.

Mid-March 2017

The Faculty of Arts and Science has a particular series of awards linked by a shared deadline — generally mid-March. Here too you will want to look around and see if any might apply to you.

Here is a summary of these listings and some other resources for on-campus awards:

As an aside, if you want to widen your search even more, two websites can offer some leads for awards and funding that do not have a U of T base:

Ultimately, searching for scholarship could be a never-ending process of research. Use compilation sites like these, but also don’t hesitate to make inquiries anywhere you may have a connection, whether academic (departments, professors) or personal (workplaces, unions, non-profits).

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Tax Tips

A quick sketch of Tax resources to help you with your taxes, and a small gloss of the various things you might need and deploy when doing your taxes — or even what might be used by your parents for their taxes.

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You may be already asking why do taxes at all, especially if you are guessing (and in many cases, correctly) that you do not have enough income to actually owe any taxes. The Government of Canada gives the fine details of who is expected to file taxes, but they also indicate a few reasons why you’d want to — and it boils down, in many cases, to the opportunity to claim a refund, or GST/HST refund cheques. It is also good practice and gets certain things on record like RRSP contribution limits, which can carry over.

International students may also be obliged to file taxes, and, similarly, may get some benefit out of it.

The campus has a few services to help students with their taxes, and students can also use online tax software free. Here is some documentation you may have for your taxes, along with resources to assist you in finding good tax clinics.

Tax Documentation

  • T2202A form – This form is available on ACORN, and is a form needed by the Government of Canada to indicate what months in a calendar year you were full or part-time, and the applicable tuition you paid for the same time period. It generates a credit either for the student directly, or for the students’ parents if it is passed on to them.
  • T4A slip – This form is available on ACORN, and usually represents grants, awards, scholarships, fellowships and RESP funding. If you are enrolled full-time and can claim the full-time education amount, post-secondary school scholarships, fellowships and bursaries received are not taxable up to the total amount required to support you in the program.
  • T4 slip – This form is sent to you to represent employment income for the calendar year in question. You are also expected to report any income, including occasional earnings and tips, on your tax return even if there is no T4 slip to represent it.

Possible Credits and Deductions

  • Tuition, Education and Textbook Amounts – This is what the T2202A form will yield for you, or to your parents if you choose to transfer some of these credits. The education credit is $400/month of full-time study, $120/month for part-time study; textbook credits is $65/month FT, $20/month PT. Please note that effective January 1, 2017, the federal education and textbook tax credits will be eliminated. This measure does not eliminate the tuition tax credit, and it does not affect the ability to claim the credits on your 2016 return.
  • Transit – You can claim credit for the cost of public transit passes bought in the previous year that are monthly or longer duration. You can also claim the cost of shorter duration passes if each pass entitles you to unlimited travel for an uninterrupted period of at least 5 days and you purchase enough of these passes so that you are entitled to unlimited travel for at least 20 days in any 28-day period. Also, you can claim the cost of electronic payment cards when used to make at least 32 one-way trips during an uninterrupted period not exceeding 31 days.
  • Student Loan Interest Payments – If you’re paying back a student loan, you’ll be glad to know that, starting in 1998, students and former students can claim a 17% non-refundable federal tax credit on the interest they pay on their student loans. You can also carry forward these amounts and apply them to any tax return in the next five years — and this might be a good idea if you have no tax to pay this year.
  • Canada Employment Credit – If you were an employee in 2016, you can claim an employment amount on line 363 of your Schedule 1.
  • Moving Expenses – If you moved 40 km or more for school, in theory you can obtain a deduction, but it is only usable against any taxable scholarship/bursary/grant/fellowship income. Since for most students, none of that is taxable, there is a strong chance that you are not eligible for this credit. There is a potential deduction if you move for work.
  • Child Care Expenses – If you paid someone to look after your child, you should review this possible claim.


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