On Monday, November 7, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, Canada’s Minister of Transport, visited Conestoga’s new Skilled Trades campus in Cambridge to meet with students and provide details on the Government of Canada’s commitment to making education more affordable by eliminating interest on federal student and apprentice loans.
The Honourable Omar Alghabra, Canada’s Minister of Transport, visited Conestoga’s new Skilled Trades campus to meet with students and provide details on the Government of Canada’s commitment to making education more affordable.
Minister Alghabra was joined by local MPs Valerie Bradford (Kitchener South-Hespeler), the Honourable Bardish Chagger (Waterloo) and Tim Louis (Kitchener-Conestoga) for the announcement, which builds on measures in the federal government’s 2022 Fall Economic Statement.
“The transition from school to working life should be made easier, not harder,” said Minister Alghabra in a news release. “The 2022 Fall Economic Statement proposal to make all Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans permanently interest-free beginning on April 1, 2023 means that students and apprentices can focus on investing in building their futures.”
According to the Minister, approximately 50 per cent of Canadian students rely on student loans to help finance their education. Eliminating the interest on student loans could save average borrowers hundreds of dollars per year as they are transitioning from school to work.
Minister Alghabra, accompanied by MPs Valerie Bradford and Tim Louis, also met with staff and children at Conestoga’s Childcare Centre and Lab School.
“Making post-secondary education more accessible and affordable is essential to Canada’s continued growth and prosperity,” said Conestoga President John Tibbits. “We need to provide opportunities for everyone to participate in our economy, build successful futures and contribute to their communities.”
As part of his visit to the region, Minister Alghabra, accompanied by MPs Bradford and Louis, also met with staff and children at Conestoga’s Childcare Centre and Lab School at the college’s Doon campus. As part of their efforts to make life more affordable for Canadian families, the federal government is raising the Canada Child Care Benefit, reducing child care fees and creating additional child care spaces across the country to provide additional options for parents and families.
Approximately 98 per cent of licensed child care centres in Waterloo Region have opted in to the new Early Learning and Child Care System, the highest rate of uptake in the province.