Post-Secondary Student Support Program

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) provides financial assistance to First Nations students who are enrolled in eligible post-secondary programs.


To ensure that First Nations students have the same opportunities for success as other students in Canada, Budget 2019 invested $320 million over 5 years beginning in fiscal year 2019 to 2020, to renew and expand funding for the Post-Secondary Student Support Program.

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About the program

The program aims to improve the socio-economic outcomes for First Nations by supporting First Nations in providing eligible students with funding to access education opportunities at the post-secondary level. This is consistent with the principle of First Nations control of First Nations education.

To be eligible for funding, students must maintain a satisfactory academic standing within an eligible post-secondary institution. These include:

Funding for this program is provided to First Nations or First Nations-designated organizations as part of core funding agreements with Indigenous governments and organizations.

First Nations are responsible for determining the selection criteria and funding allocations in accordance with the provisions of their funding agreement and national program guidelines.

Eligible costs covered by the program may include:

The maximum amount payable per full time student cannot exceed $53,000 per year.

On an extraordinary and justified basis, the maximum amount payable per year for a student in an advanced or professional degree program or a masters or doctoral program, may exceed $53,000 up to a maximum of $90,000.

No student is automatically entitled to this amount.

Who can apply

Status First Nations post-secondary students who maintain satisfactory academic standing within an eligible post-secondary institution.

Funding is limited and not all students may be funded. Partial funding may be provided. Applications are valid for 1 school year only.

For more information, contact your local band office or ISC regional office.


Please contact your local band office or ISC regional office for information on deadlines to apply for funding.

How to apply

First Nations students who want to pursue post-secondary studies and access available funding programs should contact their local band office or ISC regional office.

To learn more please consult the Post-Secondary Student Support Program and University and College Entrance Preparation Program: National Guidelines 2023 to 2024.

Additional financial assistance for First Nations students

The Canada Student Financial Assistance Program offers grants and loans to full-time and part-time students to help pay for their post-secondary education.

To apply with your province or territory, please visit: Canada Student Grants and Loans.

You might also be interested in learning about other financial assistance that may be available to you:

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