Canadian Students Define Success as Being Happy, Rather than Owning a Big House and Expensive Car: Survey

TORONTO, Sept. 9, 2015 /CNW/ - Planning for and attaining a higher education is an exciting milestone for many Canadian students each year. While some students are motivated to obtain a higher education so they can afford material things, newly published research shows the majority of high school and post-secondary students define "success" based on their level of happiness, rather than by things like a big house or expensive car.

The StudentNation Survey commissioned by D+H, a leading global financial technology company and the administrator of the Canadian Student Loans Program, asked Canadian high school and post-secondary students questions about their interests across a variety of topics including technology, the environment, personal finance, health, careers, social media, politics and more.

When asked which of the following 12 statements are most aligned to students' definition of success, the leading answer among high school and post-secondary students was "being happy most of the time" at 65 per cent.  Having a "job or career that I love" ranked second with 63 per cent of high school students and 61 per cent of post-secondary students agreeing with this statement and "owning a large house and expensive car" ranked last with 24 per cent of high school students and 17 per cent of post-secondary students respectively.

"Having a clear understanding of how students perceive the world around them has become increasingly important to businesses, including the financial institutions and governments we serve," says Chris Whyte, Senior Vice President of Lending at D+H Canada. "Staying ahead of the evolving views and opinions of students, has helped D+H become the industry leader in student lending technology, and has helped inform how we support 1.7 million students on behalf of the Government of Canada, various provinces and  financial institutions."

Other interesting findings from the StudentNation Survey include:

On Personal Finance: Six in 10 post-secondary students do not do a budget

  • 39% of post-secondary students said they regularly do a budget to help them manage their finances, compared to only 15% of high school students
  • 29% of post-secondary students think they will be able to retire comfortably, compared to 19% of high school students
  • 26% of post-secondary students think they'll be financially better off than their parents, compared to 31% of high school students

On Health: High school students feel healthier than post-secondary students

  • 82% of high school students describe their health as "Excellent/Very Good", compared to 74% of post-secondary students
  • 37% of high school students say they eat less processed and fast food than they did 2 years ago, compared to 44% of post-secondary students
  • 41% of high school students say they know how to make a balanced meal for themselves, compared to 55% of post-secondary students

On Environment: Interest in climate change comparatively low, but goes up with age

  • Only 17% of high school students said they were particularly interested in the environment and climate change, compared to 27% of post-secondary students
  • 26% of post-secondary students said they buy from companies that are environmentally responsible, compared to 17% of high school students

On Jobs: Only three in 10 post-secondary students are interested in job hunting

  • 29% of post-secondary students are particularly interested in job hunting and careers, compared to 19% of high school students
  • 23% of post-secondary students want to start their own business in the next 5-10 years, compared to 16% of high school students
  • 30% of students said they would like to find an employer where they could spend their whole career

On Social Media: Half of students are connected "all the time"

  • 50% of post-secondary students said they are connected to social media almost "all the time," compared to 54% of high school students
  • 29% of post-secondary students said they are too open with their personal information online, compared to 23% of high school students
  • 11% of high school and post-secondary students update their social media status daily

Canadians are invited to participate in the D+H StudentNation QUIZ to test their knowledge about student choices and preferences. A ranking summary is provided online once participants complete the quiz.  To view an infographic summarizing key findings from the D+H StudentNation Survey, visit

About the D+H StudentNation Survey
The omnibus survey was conducted by youth research firm Decode, between November and December 2014 on behalf of D+H. The survey results were from 1,206 respondents who indicated they were high school and post-secondary students in Canada. This segment was a subset of a larger survey of 2,103 Canadians aged 13-34. Survey method was via online panel.

About D+H
D+H (TSX: DH) is a leading financial technology provider the world's financial institutions rely on every day to help them grow and succeed. Our lending, payments, enterprise and global transaction banking solutions are trusted by nearly 8,000 banks, specialty lenders, community banks, credit unions, governments and corporations. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, D+H has more than 5,500 employees worldwide who are passionate about partnering with clients to create forward-thinking solutions that fit their needs. With annual revenues of more than $1 billion, D+H is recognized as one of the world's top FinTech companies on IDC Financial Insights FinTech Rankings and American Banker's FinTech Forward ranking. For more information, visit

SOURCE DH Corporation

For further information: Lynnette Visaya, Senior Manager for D+H, T: (647) 725-2520 x208, C: (416) 522-1971,


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