WHO WE ARE
SFS is a non-partisan student run organization at Queen’s University that understands the importance of education. With the new OSAP cuts, the Queen's community fears many of our low-income students will struggle or be forced to stop pursuing their education at Queen's. With the help of the Queen’s bursary program and community at large, we can help combat these cuts by donating to our fellow students through the General Bursary Fund.
Queen’s has the reputation of being a “rich” school. In many ways this is true. Schools like Queen’s attract some of Canada’s wealthiest families. At Queen's, roughly 50% of students come from families who earn more than $125,000 a year. Whereas last year, 18% of Queen's students received free tuition because they come from families who made under $50,000 a year. This means there are thousands of students at Queen's who rely on OSAP just to be here. Some of them might not know if they are going to be able to come back.
That is why some fortunate students have decided to use their privilege to fight back, and to pledge their 10% tuition cut to students who will be most affected by these OSAP cuts. SFS wants you to use your privilege to make a difference. Stand up and say "thank you, but no thank you" to these changes. If your parents pay your tuition, reach out to and ask if they would like to spend their 10% savings on your peers in need, because this time, the people who need help are right here at home. They are at your school, they sit beside you in Stauffer, they're in your classes, they are your neighbours, your TA's, your friends, or even your roommates. You know that they deserve to be here too. Let's unify this school by showing students from all backgrounds that we care that they are with us at Queen's.
If you benefit from your 10% tuition cut and cannot afford to part with it, any donation can make a difference. Even though $5 may not pay off someones tuition, it is enough to show that you care– that Queen's cares– about the success of every member in our community. Every little bit adds up. Your donation is a donation to our collective futures– your future doctors, scientists, politicians, lawyers, nurses, teachers, and every Queen's University-educated member of society that will go on to make a difference in someone else's life too– regardless of how much money their parents have.
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Q: What is the Queen's General Bursary Fund?The Queen's Bursary fund is a non-repayable grant available to students in all years of study who have a demonstrated financial need. The Queen's General Bursary is a non-repayable grant available to students in all years of study who have a demonstrated financial need. Essentially, what the general bursary program does is calculate a student's standard costs (tuition, fees, books, supplies, living expenses, groceries, etc.) and their resources (OSAP, other forms of government assistance, etc.) and tries to supplement the difference. It basically works the same as OSAP does. The General Bursary program acknowledges that they do not meet all of the needs but if they have a student access guarantee they will have to meet that need The Student Access Guarantee is a partnership between Queen’s University and the Government of Ontario to ensure that no qualified Ontario student should be prevented from attending the University because of a lack of financial support.Under the SAG, Queen’s ensures students are able to receive enough aid to cover their educational costs (tuition, compulsory fees, books and supplies) when these are above the usual range of costs covered by OSAP.
Q: How will donating to the General Bursary help?This is fairly simple. The more funds they get– the more they are able to give! The University receives funds and distributes it throughout the eligible students. Due to the student access guarantee, they must do their best to meet the needs of those students. However, not only are students receiving less money through OSAP, the University is also receiving less money from tuition. The 10% tuition decrease will cost Queen's University $31,400,000. This means there is less money available for the bursary program. Any donation helps. The need of the student will reduce slightly with tuition but increase much more with the OSAP reduction. There is a big misconception that the Queen's administration always gets to choose what they put their donations and funds towards. In fact, most donations are conditional. If someone chooses to donate their money to a specific fund, their donation has to be spent towards what the fund was set up to do. For example, if Mr. Smith donates $10,000,000 for the construction of Mitchel Hall, Queen's cannot spend even a $1 on mental health, or to student assistance. The fund set up for SFS is for students in need of financial assistance– meaning 100% of it will go towards that– not a cent less.
Q: How many students at Queen's rely on OSAPWe are very fortunate to have the lowest population of students that are reliant on OSAP compared to our total population. By reliant, we mean students whose parents make less than $50,000/year and (formerly) have 100% of their costs covered by OSAP in grants. This means that we are in a much better situation than most schools– we have the ability to help. *note: many students are still "reliant" on OSAP even if they were not fully covered by it In addition to students who formerly had their tuition 100% paid by OSAP grants, there are thousands of more students who don't meet the criteria but are still desperately in need of financial assistance (example/ students whose parents do not support them).
Q: How much of my donation will go directly to Queen's students in need?100% of your donation goes directly to Queen's students. $0 go to administrative costs. The specific bursary program SFS is using goes to Queen's students who are from Ontario.
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