The Cost of Education: A Roadblock to Academic Perseverance?

As parents, we always want what’s best for our children. From an early age, we size up their personality and see them paint a self portrait through role-play, whether that of an actor, teacher, doctor, fireman or designer.

However, along the road a number of events can create obstacles to their ambitions and dreams, such as learning difficulties, giftedness, illness, family background, and so forth. But who would have thought that the cost of education would be a genuine roadblock to the self-fulfillment of today’s youth?

According to the first edition of the Universitas Barometer, a tool released by education savings pioneer Universitas Financial to provide economic indicators regarding post-secondary education, 32% of young people said the high costs of education had compelled them to abandon their academic ambitions. This means one out of three students will not pursue their education for financial reasons.

Surprising? Yes, and no. Yes, given that in an ideal world, money should not be an obstacle to the pursuit of knowledge and education. However, when we see education costs increase from one year to the next, it’s better to be prepared as the bill to cover these may be steep for many families, particularly in the case of students who will have leave their home and pay for housing during their studies.

Baromètre angCost to complete two years of CEGEP and three years of University in Quebec. Based on a 1.7% yearly increase. Sources: Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’enseignement supérieur, Ministère de la Famille, Statistics Canada, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

Funding your child’s education
The Barometer also found that over three quarters (77%) of parents are concerned with the costs of post-secondary education. Luckily, there are options to plan ahead and help our children pursue their education without incurring too much debt.

The registered education savings plan (RESP), for example, is a type of investment specifically designed to save for post-secondary education. The main advantages of the RESP are the substantial government grants that supplement RESP savings and the investment’s tax-free growth.

To learn how much an RESP could earn for you, try out our calculator and do the math online. This will give you an idea of how much you could receive to help put your children through school and without the burden of a hefty student debt!


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