As a First Nations, Métis, Inuit or non-status Canadian Indigenous applicant, it can be hard to know what process to follow when considering applying to college. We hope to make this process as smooth as possible for you. Our team is available to support you through each step of your journey.

Before Applying

If you’re thinking about applying to college, let us help you prepare. Here are some important steps and resources to explore to ensure you have everything you need.

Admission Requirements

Familiarize yourself with the admission requirements of the program(s) you’re interested in applying to. In order to qualify and receive an offer of admission, you will need to ensure you meet the criteria before submitting your application. If you don’t meet the requirements you may want to consider academic upgrading. 

How We Communicate

Fanshawe offers specific support for students who self-identify as Indigenous (First Nations, Métis or Inuit). You can self-ID through our online form or as part of the Ontario Colleges application process. After self-IDing we will share email communications that remind you of important steps you may want to take as well as invitations to information sessions, events and activities that will offer further information to help you on your journey. Other areas of the college will also communicate with you throughout the application process.

Academic Upgrading

  • If you haven’t completed your high school diploma we recommend the ACE Program. Offered for free from Fanshawe, this program helps you get a feel for the college learning experience. Connect with us to understand what to expect and how to prepare. 
  • If you’re only missing a grade 12 math, English or science in order to qualify for your program, we offer courses that, if successfully completed, will make you eligible for consideration in your chosen program.

Application Timeline

View our domestic applicant timeline to know when to apply, when to start looking out for your offer and when to confirm it.


Learn more about timeframes and processes

Connect with Us!

Meet with an Indigenous Recruitment and Community Relations Advisor for guidance on your program fit. They can provide support throughout the application process. 

Connect with us!

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How to Apply

The process for applying for your college program depends on the type of program or credential you would like to study. Most program and credential applications need to be completed online (with the exception of apprenticeships).

Submitting Documents

Each applicant is responsible for obtaining and submitting documents for their application. We are unable to access files that belong to other institutions so if you are missing a document, you will need to contact the institution to request a copy. 

Official Transcripts

When applying to college or university, you must provide an official transcript. An official transcript can only be produced by the institution that delivered the course or credential. This document includes verification details directly from the institution. These transcripts are available upon request from the institution. Unofficial transcripts are versions produced from online portals, emails, scanned copies etc. These versions cannot be accepted for your application. 

Self-identifying as Indigenous

On the OCAS application, and on our website you will find an option to self-identify as Indigenous. This information is never mandatory to disclose, however, Ontario Colleges provides this information to colleges included in your application so that each team can provide specific support from their Indigenous departments. At Fanshawe, we use this information to identify you as someone who may benefit from the information, support, and events that we offer to Indigenous (FNMI) students as a way of supporting you through all of the steps of the application journey and student experience. 

Other considerations: Funding

You may qualify for post-secondary/band funding. In order to be approved for funding by your first nation, you must have completed your Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). Proof of OSSD completion is required for your college or university application and funding application. We recommend checking with your first nation community for funding requirements before submitting an application.  Learn about when to apply, how to apply and whether you may qualify. 


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After the Offer

Accepting an offer

Accepting an offer of admission tells us you plan to attend this program and that you would like us to continue reserving your seat. While we hope you will attend, please know that there is no formal commitment made at this point. We understand that financial and lifestyle factors can influence your decision beyond this point. If you change your mind - that’s okay. There are no financial or other consequences that would impact future opportunities. Learn about accepting an offer and the steps to take afterward. 


Your offer of admission includes a date by which you must accept it. If you do not accept the offer by that date, it is revoked and offered to another applicant. Still feeling unsure? Connect with our team for guidance on making this decision. 

What if I’m waiting to hear back on funding?

Connect with our Transition and Learning Advisors before your deadline has passed. They can connect you with sponsors and, in some cases, if your deadline has flexibility our team may be able to facilitate an adjusted deadline for you. If not, they can offer advice on steps you should take. Connect with our team to discuss your options. 

Am I required to attend?

You still have time to change your mind. Consider this your intent to attend in the short-term but know that there is no financial commitment at this point. Accepting an offer and then changing your mind will not be recorded or affect future opportunities at Fanshawe, but it does ensure your place in your program is held until you have made a firm decision. 

Post-admission Requirements

Don’t forget to make note of these requirements and ensure they are completed by their deadlines. 

Prepare to Pay Your Deposit

You will receive a package in the mail with an invoice (the invoice will also be sent electronically to the email used on your OCAS application). This invoice will indicate a deposit payment amount you are required to pay by the deadline in order to keep your offer of admission. At times, the duration between accepting an offer and receiving this information can extend to a couple of months. Be sure to make this payment on time. If you are struggling to secure funding for this deposit, please contact our team.

What if I’m still waiting to hear back on funding?

Don’t let the deadline pass - reach out to our team. This is one of the many reasons to self-ID as Indigenous on your college application or on our website. This allows us to provide personalized support directly to you. If you haven’t already, we encourage you to self-ID.  

Join Us

We offer several events and programs that provide students with a chance to prepare for their program, meet other students, and have fun!  


Orientation & Events

Funding Options, Tuition and Fees

Funding Options

Band Funding

If you are a Status First Nations student, you may be eligible for band funding. Each band’s post-secondary office has its own funding application. These applications are separate from college applications (and OSAP applications). 

How do I know if I qualify? 

Each First Nation has its own policies, requirements and funding priorities that can be found by contacting your band’s post-secondary office. If you are not aware of your band’s contact information, you can find it through Indigenous Services Canada

When do I apply? 

Each First Nation has their own deadline dates for funding. Please contact your First Nation band to confirm your application deadline. While subject to change, typical application deadlines are: 

  • Fall Intake: May 1
  • Winter Intake: October 1 
  • Summer Intake: March 1 

Note: Late funding applications are usually not accepted so it is important to apply prior to your band’s deadline. 

How do I apply?

Applications can be found through your band’s post-secondary office. Please be sure to review program pages specifically to ensure all fees (tuition, post-admission requirement-related costs, course materials etc.) are included. If you need assistance please contact Fanshawe’s Institute of Indigenous Learning.

Contact Us

Can I get OSAP and band funding? 

Yes, you can apply for both funding options and may qualify for both. OSAP funding is a type of loan that has to be repaid. You are not required to accept an OSAP loan just because you qualify. If you qualify for OSAP, however, you may also qualify for other scholarships, grants, bursaries or awards (money that typically does not need to be repaid) that are based on financial need, so you may want to explore this option.

For application deadlines and additional OSAP information visit the OSAP and Student Loans page.

If you are being sponsored by a third party, including an Indigenous community or Better Jobs Ontario (formerly known as Second Career) your sponsor will need to email a sponsorship letter (or signed contract) to by the deposit due date. Please ensure your student name and number are included in the letter. If received before your due date, you will not be required to make the non-refundable deposit.​​​ The sponsorship letter or signed contract will be sufficient to defer the deposit and secure your place in a program. Receipt of the sponsorship letter or signed contract by the deposit due date is important, especially for oversubscribed programs. If a sponsorship letter or signed contract is not available by the deposit due date, students will be required to make a non-refundable deposit to secure their place in the program.

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Tuition Fees

Details relating to tuition and associated program fees can be found on the individual program pages of our website.

Program Fees

Some post-admission program requirements have associated costs outside of the tuition amount included in your invoice. Review the post-admission requirements of your program to confirm if any additional costs apply to your program.

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Self-Identification Form

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