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NSCC becomes first college in Atlantic Canada to waive tuition for former youth-in-care

Jan. 05, 2021 – Media Release

Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) is joining the growing list of post-secondary institutions reducing barriers to education for learners who’ve spent time in foster care or been supported by other provincially-supported programming.*

Through the Post-Care Free Tuition Program, eligible learners can apply to have up to 100% of their NSCC tuition and fees covered.

Eligible learners can apply now at

“At NSCC, we’re committed to building accessibility and inclusion into everything we do,” says NSCC President Don Bureaux. “By eliminating barriers to education in this way, we’re opening up a world of possibilities and ensuring that all Nova Scotians have the opportunity to move successfully into training and the workforce.”

To be eligible, learners must have been in the care of the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services — including Mi’kmaw Family and Children’s Services of Nova Scotia — or have accessed Youth Services (as defined by Section 19 of the Children and Family Services Act) for a minimum of one year (can be cumulative). Applicants must also be working towards their first post-secondary credential and not currently be in receipt of the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services’ Educational Bursary, whether in- or post-care and custody.* 

More information on eligibility and application is available at

“The cost of post-secondary tuition can be a barrier for former youth in care,” says the Honourable Kelly Regan, Minister of Community Services. “I’m grateful to NSCC for providing this significant opportunity to help these young people reach their educational goals.”

The Post-Care Free Tuition Program is inspired by the work of Jane Kovarikova, PhD Candidate and founder of the Child Welfare Political Action Committee Canada.

"I know firsthand how transformative post-secondary education can be for someone raised in care,” says Kovarikova, who entered foster care at the age of 6. “It was a community college that made it possible for me to start my academic journey. I commend NSCC on its work to broaden these opportunities for Nova Scotians."

Before applying for the Post-Care Free Tuition Program, learners must first apply for admission to the College and their full- or part-time program of choice. Learners can apply online or download an application form at

The Post-Care Free Tuition Program is partially funded by the generosity of donors to the NSCC Foundation. Those interested in helping to make a difference in the lives of former youth in care can learn more and donate at

* All Post-Care Free Tuition Program applications will undergo verification of eligibility by Nova Scotia’s Department of Community Services or Mi’kmaw Family and Children’s Services.

Update (Feb. 1, 2021): There are 5 Post-Care Free Tuition Program Bursaries presently available for use in the Winter 2021 semester – please visit for details.

About NSCC

NSCC is committed to building Nova Scotia's economy and quality of life through education and innovation, transforming Nova Scotia one learner at a time. NSCC offers more than 130 career-oriented programs throughout the province at our 14 campuses, including our online eCampus. Programs are offered through five academic schools – Access, Education and Language; Business and Creative Industries; Health and Human Services, Technology and Environment; Trades and Transportation – and reflect the labour market needs and opportunities in Nova Scotia. NSCC's primary goal: student success. An annual survey of College graduates shows that 91% are employed one year after graduation, most in their field of study, with 90% of those employed living and working in Nova Scotia. 

For more information

Niki Toomey, NSCC Communications Advisor
* For application-related questions, please email  

Sue Christensen, Child Welfare PAC Canada