On May 7th, 2021, Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) President, Vianne Timmons, made additional comments on “The Big Reset” report. She says that the recommendation to cut MUN’s budget by 30% is too radical. Timmons says MUN has been looking at raising tuition but does not want to increase it by that much.
Many of the recommendations in “The Big Reset” report for MUN and the College of the North Atlantic (CONA) are similar to last week’s Post-Secondary Education (PSE) Review Report. Both reports recommend lifting the 22-year-old tuition freeze. However, there is one significant difference: the PSE Review Report recommends that the government maintain the operating grants for both MUN and CONA, but the “The Big Reset” report recommends cutting the operating grants by 30% over six years.
“The 30% seems to be an impossible target, but we’ll work with government…”Vianne Timmons
Timmons states, “In the context of being cut the last five years, every year losing 10% of our workforce, the 30% seems to be an impossible target, but we’ll work with government, we’ll work with them to see what is reasonable.”
Currently, undergraduate tuition is $2,550 for Newfoundland and Labrador students to enroll in ten courses a year.
Timmons states regarding if MUN’s operating grant does not decrease, “I would recommend to the Board of Regents we look around $5,000 for tuition and that still will be the lowest outside of Quebec.”
“We still want to keep our tuition low in terms of the Canadian context.”Vianne Timmons
If the operating grant does get cut, Timmons states, “In our initial analysis, and its very initial, it would probably be close to three-fold. So, it would have to go up to around $7,000. That wasn’t what we want or want to consider, so you know we would like to keep programs accessible. We still want to keep our tuition low in terms of the Canadian context.”
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.