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Toronto, Canada

312 Adelaide Street West, Suite 301
Toronto, Ontario - M5V 1R2
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Can I Afford to Go Back to School?

Written by Melissa Robertson

Maternity leave is a special time for mothers to bond with their baby and recover from pregnancy and labour. But time off from your working life can leave your thinking about your future career. Can you afford to go back to school? PLN takes a closer look at the financial costs of a career upgrade.

The moment you discover you are about to be a parent you are hit with a stream of emotions: excitement, apprehension and a wave of responsibility. After all, you are now taking on emotional, physical and financial responsibility for a brand new (extremely expensive!) human.

Luckily, becoming a parent does not mean the end of furthering your career goals. In fact, in some provinces, parents can qualify for free tuition. Just another perk of parenthood!

Choosing the right school

Choosing the right school is an important step in your education journey. Continuing your education is a big commitment, and you want to make sure you are in the right place.

At triOS College, students have an opportunity to meet with a Financial Aid Officer to learn all the funding options available to help them continue their education. This is a great way to easily understand what could be a confusing process.

“Whether it is a monthly payment plan, student loans, bursaries or other funding options, we will take the time to decide which option is best for you,” says Chantelle H. a member of the triOS Financial Aid Team.  “Our goal is to find a financial solution for you so you can take the next step in your education.”

Find a financial solution

In Ontario, you can qualify for OSAP (Ontario Student Assistance Program), which is a provincial government program to help students pay for college or university.

For example, if you are a single parent making $40,000 a year with one child and want to go to school at a private institution, like triOS College, you may actually qualify for free tuition. Here is the breakdown:


Grants (you keep) $20,200

Loan (you pay back) $7,100

Total amount $27,300

Your OSAP amount can cover expenses such as tuition, books, living expenses and childcare to allow you to support your family while studying. Take a look at this easy online calculator to see how much you could potentially qualify for.

What if I don’t qualify for OSAP?

While a great option for some students, not everyone is eligible for OSAP. You may have a spouse who earns too much money or perhaps you failed to repay a student loan in the past. For those students, triOS College offers monthly payment plans for students to pay their tuition while they study. These payments are interest-free during the time you are an active student, and there is no credit check required.

If you live in Ontario and are currently collecting unemployment benefits, you can apply to the Second Career program, which helps individuals re-train in high-demand sectors.

Lifetime learning plan

Under the Lifetime Learning plan, Canadians have the opportunity to withdraw from their RRSPs (Registered Retirement Savings Plan) to finance their education (or their spouse or common-law partner’s) up to $10,000 a year, for a maximum of $20,000.

Can I work and go to school?

While many traditional universities and colleges have varied schedules that can force their students to put their lives on hold, triOS College offers half-day classes with morning, afternoon and evening schedules to adapt to your schedule, not the other way around. This is a great perk for busy families working towards a better future.

Get started sooner

In addition, with modular learning taught by industry professionals, courses start almost every month. Not only can you focus on one subject at a time, but when you make the decision to return to school, you can begin almost right away.

Depending on the program you study, you can be job-ready in as little as six months, and with internships, job placement and career counselling, you are not only getting an education but the first step in your new career with industry professionals available to help every step along the way.

So what are you waiting for? Take the first step towards a better future by upgrading your education today. Interested in a program that could have you job-ready in less than a year? Check out our Fast Track Giveaway, where you could win up to $10,000 for a program of you your choice at triOS College. Click the button below to learn more. 

*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Parent Life Network or their partners.