Students can obtain financial assistance for tertiary-level education through the Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP). HELP is a special soft loan facility made available through the Ministry of Tertiary Education and Skills Training (TEST) that can help cover the following expenses:
HELP funds are awarded for recognised programmes of study at approved Tertiary Level Institutions (TLIs) that lead to the award of any of the following:
You must be a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago and enrolled in an approved tertiary-level education programme in any public or private TLI in Trinidad and Tobago or the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Please follow the links below for lists of HELP-approved public and private TLIs and programmes of study.
You must obtain and complete the HELP application form, which can be downloaded from TEST's website using the link below or picked up from the TEST office. The HELP programme is administered by participating commercial banks in Trinidad and Tobago, including First Citizens Bank, RBTT Bank, Republic Bank and Scotiabank Trinidad and Tobago. Application forms are available at all branch locations of these banks. You can use the links below to find branch locations near you.
You must take your completed HELP application form and a Letter of Acceptance from the tertiary level institution at which you are enrolled to the loans department of a participating commercial bank. You must also pay a non-refundable loan application fee of TT$400.00 when you apply.
The bank will ensure that your application is properly completed in accordance with HELP terms and conditions. The bank will also interview you to obtain additional information that the bank considers necessary for an adequate evaluation of your financial standing. You will be advised within four to six weeks of the status of your loan application.
If your loan is approved, the bank will schedule a meeting with you to work out the repayment terms and to have you sign relevant documents. The bank will work with you to determine repayment terms, which vary according to the amount that was approved and your income situation. Unemployed applicants begin repayment three months after completing their course of study. Employed applicants begin repayment immediately.
You are required to pay a loan application fee of TT$400.00, per loan, if your loan application is approved. The application fee includes a charge of TT$36.00 for a credit report.
For more information, please visit the Ministry of Tertiary Education and Skills Training website using the link below, or contact the Ministry office.
The Ministry of Tertiary Education and Skills Training
The International Waterfront Centre
Levels 16-18, Tower C
#1a Wrightson Road, Port of Spain
Fax. (868) 627-5437
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, except public holidays.