Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation

Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation
Government of Manitoba

Government of Manitoba

June 06, 2007 12:22 ET

Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation: University Student Debt Down 26% in Manitoba Since 2000

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - June 6, 2007) - Bursaries from both the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation and the government of Manitoba helped to reduce debt levels among graduating university students by an average of 26 per cent between 2000 and 2006, says a new report released today at the University of Winnipeg's Duckworth Centre by the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation.

Key findings of the report, Lowering Student Debt: Explaining The Decline in the Debt of University Students in Manitoba, include:

- Average debt loads at graduation among university students relying on government student loans to finance their education have decreased from approximately $20,000 in 1999-2000 to less than $15,000 in 2005-2006.

- Debt levels decreased most significantly between 2000 and 2003, following the implementation of the Foundation's millennium bursary and the province's Manitoba Bursary.

"The Manitoba government strongly supports accessible, affordable post-secondary education. Through our partnership with the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation, we have helped thousands of students manage the cost of their educations by reducing debt at the end of each year," said Diane McGifford, Manitoba's Minister of Advanced Education and Literacy. "This investment in students today will have a long-term impact on social and economic development across the province."

"The Foundation is pleased to see that both its bursary program and its partnership with the Government of Manitoba have had such a positive impact on the province's post-secondary students," said Norman Riddell, the Foundation's executive director and chief executive officer. "Previous research showed that bursaries helped students facing financial barriers to continue their studies, and this report underscores the importance of such research in measuring the impact of programs designed to reduce student debt loads and increase access to post-secondary education in Canada."

"The University of Winnipeg is committed to access and excellence," said Lloyd Axworthy, University of Winnipeg's President and Vice-Chancellor. "Support from the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation and the government of Manitoba go a long way toward increasing access."

Lowering Student Debt is available on the Foundation's website at

The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation is a private, independent organization created by an act of Parliament in 1998. It encourages Canadian students to strive for excellence and pursue their post-secondary studies. Each year, the Foundation distributes some $340 million in the form of bursaries and scholarships throughout Canada. Since its inception, it has awarded 800,000 bursaries, with a total value of $2.3 billion, to Canadian post-secondary students. In Manitoba, over the same period of time, more than 22,000 bursaries and scholarships were distributed, at a value of approximately $80 million.

Contact Information

  • Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation
    Jaime Frederick
    Communications Advisor
    Government of Manitoba
    Cabinet Communications