In a media release on May 6th, 2021, MUN Faculty Association (MUNFA) made it clear that it rejects the recommendation by “The Big Reset: The Report of the Premier’s Economic Recovery Team” to decrease the operating grants of Memorial University of Newfoundland and the College of the North Atlantic by 30% over the next six years.
MUNFA calls on MUN President, Dr. Vianne Timmons, and Chair of the Board of Regents, Iris Petten, who assisted with the preparation of ‘The Big Reset,’ to denounce the proposed cut to the province’s post-secondary institutions.
“Now is not the time to decimate our only public university and college.”Bill Schipper
MUNFA President Bill Schipper states, “As we recover from the global pandemic and move forward as a province, we need a strong post-secondary sector more than ever. Now is not the time to decimate our only public university and college.”
MUNFA states that since 2015, MUN had successive cuts to its operating grant. The release states that “While fiscal challenges can create political pressure to cut government spending, investment in education is widely recognized as one of the most effective economic multipliers. Education levels within a society are also linked to socioeconomic stability, equality and to improvements in public health.”
Schipper states that the Post-Secondary Education Review Report, “All Hands on Deck,” highlighted that the post-secondary education system is an investment in the province’s future.
Furthermore, he says that “’The Big Reset’ fails to acknowledge this investment and if implemented is guaranteed to force both future students and recent graduates out of Newfound and Labrador.”
“Education is widely recognized as one of the most effective economic multipliers.”MUNFA’
MUNFA closed with an emphasis on the critical message to the provincial government from “All Hands on Deck” report that government must maintain “at least the current level of support for the operating grant for Memorial University, with no further reductions.”
Matt Barter is a third-year student in the Humanities and Social Sciences Faculty at Memorial University of Newfoundland, majoring in Political Science with a minor in Sociology. He enjoys reading thought-provoking articles, walks in nature, and volunteering in the community.