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Maggie Benston Centre, #2203, 8888 University Dr, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6

GSS Newsletter – June 5, 2020


Transit Subsidy and other financial support

In light of COVID-19 pandemic, GSS has taken measures to assist and support graduate students in their time of need. Below is a summary of all the financial support students can get from GSS during the crisis. For any questions or concerns contact the director of graduate service at

Transit subsidy

Due to the cancelation of the Upass program in the summer semester, GSS will be offering a monthly Transit Subsidy to students who still need to use public transit for their academic progress and it is up and running on the website as of today! The transit subsidy would be offered on a month to month basis. The regulations would be updated each month considering the number of applications and our budget with the intention of prioritizing students in most financial needs. Currently, we’re going to categorize students based on their travel needs and will offer from $50 up to $90 monthly subsidy. Higher amount might be considered for students who would need a 3 zones pass. Apply for TS here


Emergency Grocery Cards 

EGCs are $50 Walmart or Superstore gift cards, offered each semester to students in financial need. Due to COVID-19 pandemic, we experienced a hike in requests for EGCs. We ran out of the dedicated budget mid Spring, therefore, the university had contributed $10,000 extra for the Spring semester and will be contributing another $10,000 for the Summer semester and GSS will also allocate $5,000 to this budget line from the relief fund. The following adjustments have been made to the program:

  • The max number of card limits has been lifted for the summer semester, meaning that all graduate students would be eligible to apply for an EGC regardless of the number EGCs they have received so far.
  • International students eligible for an EGC will automatically receive two $50 cards for the summer semester. 
  • Domestic students would be able to apply for one card as usual, however, Those in demonstrated financial need may apply for an additional card and additional cards will be awarded based on the decisions made by the Grants Allocation Committee.

Apply for an EGC here   


Family subsidy

    Family subsidy program is offered to assist students with dependents. In light of COVID-19, the program has been revised and the application process has been transferred online. Other than the additional $5,000 from the relief fund that would be added to this existing budget line, we also relaxed and expanded our eligibility requirements as follows:

  • In addition to students with dependent children (under age 22), students with dependent children over the age of 22 and students with no dependents but who are taking care of elderly relatives may also be considered for the award, subject to the decision of the Grants Allocation Committee. 
  • The deadline for applications has been lifted and applications would be adjudicated on a rolling basis, after the add/drop deadline.

Apply for FS here  




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