UWinnipeg offers free tuition to youth in foster care

Kids in foster care have another chance to make good thanks to the University of Winnipeg.

The university is offering free tuition to students who've recently been in the care of a child welfare agency.

President Lloyd Axworthy said the program might be a first in Canada.

The university expects to help 10 students each year with the Youth In Care Tuition Waiver program, beginning next September.

"We have a very deep commitment to addressing the needs of youth who are underrepresented in university classrooms, and we know that children and youth in care face multiple barriers that keep them from pursuing post-secondary learning, including financial hurdles," said Axworthy.

"Removing the tuition hurdle dissolves an important barrier, but more importantly, it says to this group of young people who have faced so many challenges that their dreams matter, that they are welcome and they belong here."

The Province of Manitoba will cover living expenses for the youth, including housing, textbooks and meal plans, up until age 21 while they are attending the U of W.