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Introducing the Heritage Heroes: RESPs Making a Difference in the Lives of Grads

The rising cost of post-secondary education means that graduating without a lot of student debt can be more challenging with each passing generation. The government provides grants, but in most cases they’re simply not enough to close the savings gap.

That’s where the Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) comes in handy. An RESP is a registered account to help parents save towards the post-secondary education of their children. The money you contribute grows tax-sheltered until the plan matures. When the money is withdrawn and used toward your child’s education, it’s taxed in a student bracket, most likely at a lower rate.

RESPs have been helping the younger generation of Canadians achieve their career dreams for years. That’s why Heritage Education Funds is proud to announce a new campaign called Heritage Heroes. It’s a series of in-depth features (coast-to-coast) on recent and not-so-recent grads that have used Heritage RESPs to kick-start their careers without being buried in student debt. Be inspired by interviews, videos and stories from grads on what they’ve accomplished so far in their fields of practice/study and community, and what they hope to achieve in the future.

Meet the Heritage Heroes

If you’re a parent of a student or a student just about your embark on your exciting post-secondary journey, these videos are a must-watch. You’ll have your heart warmed by 25+ recent grads – or Heritage Heroes, as we like to call them.

Here’s a sneak peak of the stories to come…

Starting in the east coast, Sean Leonard hasn’t even graduated and he’s already making the most of his RESP. Sean is s second-year medical student at Memorial University in St. John’s Newfoundland. He’s already the recipient of several awards and scholarships. He’s currently partaking in a medical exchange program in Europe. His journey to the field of medicine has been made a lot easier with his Heritage RESP. It’s helped have a bright future ahead.

Vanessa Demello likes to keep busy. She’s a recent grad who completed a double major in Psychology and English with a minor in Women and Gender Studies at the University of Toronto. Vanessa has been making the most of her degree, working towards improving mental health services for students. She’s also a strong supporter of her community. Thanks to her Heritage RESP, she was able to make her studies her main focus, rather than being concerned about paying for her costly tuition. Vanessa was able to use her degree as a launching pad to her new career at a Software Development company in Mississauga.

And finally, travelling to the west coast, Maria Hilario is a recent grad from the Wilson School of Design in Vancouver, with a degree in Fashion Design. Maria’s Heritage RESP helped her make the most of her four years in school without worrying about student loans or tuition deadlines. She was able to land her dream job at Lululemon in Vancouver as a designer. She also has the entrepreneurial spirit, running her own clothing company called MUVMINT. Without a Heritage RESP, Maria might not be the budding entrepreneur she is today.

My Personal Story

I wish these videos had been around when I was about to embark on my post-secondary education journey. Going off to college or university for the first-time is an exciting and intimidating time. To hear how much recent grads have accomplished and their hopes and dreams for the future, it really would’ve inspired me to go the extra mile and make the most of my university education.

For more inspiring Heritage Heroes stories, click here.