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Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

How do I pay for my graduate degree?

If you are thinking about pursuing a master’s degree but are stuck on the cost, there are a number of options that can make affording your graduate degree more attainable.

First, determine how much money you need. If you are currently working and/or will be working during your master’s degree, make sure to include your income versus your expenses for an accurate estimate.

Find out how much getting your master’s degree here would cost with our Graduate Tuition Calculator.

Once you have an idea of what your master’s degree will cost, choose an institution that will give you the best value for your tuition.

Choosing an online master’s program can also be more cost-effective and may reduce your residency or moving costs if you are able to study from home.

Did you know that TRU has some of the lowest tuition in B.C.? Our campus is also located in Kamloops, which was recently calculated as having the second lowest living wage in B.C. The cost of living here can be quite affordable, especially compared to larger urban centres.

One of the best ways to explore how you can help fund your graduate studies is to connect with your faculty to see what funding and research opportunities may be available to you.

Master of Arts in Human Rights and Social Justice
Master of Business Administration
Master of Education
Master of Environmental Economics and Management
Master of Nursing
Master of Nursing – Nurse Practitioner
Master of Science in Data Science
Master of Science in Environmental Economics and Management
Master of Science, Environmental Science

Once you’ve chosen your institution and program, start exploring your financial aid options.

  • StudentAid BC — apply for loans, grants and bursaries through this provincial government site.
  • TRU Awards guide — explore this search engine for all the scholarship, bursaries and awards that may be available to you.
  • TRU’s graduate awards — browse the four graduate awards to see which one(s) you are eligible for:
  • Graduate studies funding opportunities— if you are a current or future TRU graduate student, discover which additional funding supports you can apply for.
  • Specific faculty research funding — some graduate faculty may have their own opportunities for financial help, based on research and fellowship availability and stipend support.
  • Teaching and research assistants, co-op placements — work placements for graduate faculty are other financial aid avenues to explore. Newer programs may require additional teaching and research assistants, who are selected from current graduate students. Other programs may include a paid co-op placement option.

Another avenue to investigate is professional funding opportunities.

Employer tuition reimbursement is a good option if you are currently employed and looking to enhance your skillset and knowledge through your master’s degree. When pitching this to your employer, make sure to present a strong argument on how your master’s degree is a good investment for them as well.

There are also industry and professional association grants and scholarships to explore, which can help you get connected to organizations within your networking scope and see what educational funding may be available to you.

Getting — and affording — your master’s degree can take time, but it’s important to keep in mind how this degree will pay off in the long term.

Still wondering if the cost is worth continuing with a graduate program?

Explore these eight reasons to get your master’s degree to see if this educational investment is the right choice for you and your future.

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