Future licensed practical nurses go into debt while waiting for their $20,000 scholarship

We have not received anything since the first payment of $5,000 in May.laments Mrs. Paquette.

I have to pay $1200 a month in rent and I am a single motheradds.

To balance her budget, she used up her savings, worked every other weekend as a welfare recipient and went into debt through a bank loan.

The Vocational Training Center has provided us with a number of food assistance organizations, but most students are not eligible because they earned about $58,000 last year as participants with all overtime worked.says Ms. Paquette.

According to her, 5 out of 21 students from her cohort in Montérégie would leave for financial reasons.

a delay of months

In December 2021, the health and education ministers unveiled a $48 million program aimed at training 2,000 nursing assistants.

In exchange for a $20,000 stipend, each student agreed to complete her degree and work in the network for two years. Otherwise, the scholarship had to be reimbursed.

The training will start in January 2022 and will take place over a period of 14 months instead of the usual 22supported Minister of Health Christian Dubé and Minister of Education Jean-François Roberge.

Outgoing Minister of Education Jean-François Roberge.

Photo: The Canadian Press/Paul Chiasson

Thanks to the accelerated implementation of the training, the network will benefit from the contribution of 2,000 additional nursing assistants in March 2023the Order of Nurses and Nursing Assistants of Quebec (OIIAQ) rejoiced.

However, as student Leonie Depatie, Ms. Paquette’s colleague, explains, we learned that our training ended in October 2023, about four months later.

We have no news or CISSS Montérégie-Centre or the government to try to condense the course as planned or to offer us an additional amount for the next months of study. »

Quote from Leonie Depatie, student in the nursing assistant program

Several students with whom we communicated regret the situation.

on theOIIAQwe say to that cohorts affected by accelerated program implementation […] they are not all deployed at the same time, which is likely to lead to delays compared to next March.

For example, in Bas-Saint-Laurent, the cohorts started later than in Montérégie, because the situation in the health facilities was too fragile to prepare for the lack of staff.

There are over 28,000 licensed practical nurses in Quebec.

It is hoped that the cohorts participating in this government initiative will be able to undergo training in an optimal way to improve the current sequence.OIIAQ writes to us by email.

ABOUT CISSS from Montérégie-Centre, we answered at the end of the day on Friday that a payment is scheduled for Thursday, September 22 […]. To reassure our students, we will contact them to let them know the payment date.

At the start of training, students received a letter stating that the $20,000 scholarship would cover four installments. Months were mentioned, but not datesadds spokesperson Martine Lesage.

For 102 scholarships offered at CISSS75 candidates are in training in three cohorts and 16 have left.

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