By Jen Smith
The government is still reviewing Alberta’s post-secondary education system, yet the end of the review is quickly drawing closer. Minister of Advanced Education, Dave Hancock, came to campus last week to listen to students and to answer their questions. It’s not too late to tell Minister Hancock where you think post-secondary education should be heading; email him right now at email@example.com.
Over the last two weeks the SU has engaged in tuition consultation with the university. Given the government’s one-year tuition rebate, the increase in tuition that students are required to pay next year looks like it could be in excess of 13 per cent–yikes! While Hancock has recognized the potential for this ‘double bump,’ he has yet to offer any concrete initiatives that address it. University administration has expressed that by not raising tuition to the maximum, the government will think that the university already has enough money, when really it doesn’t.
On top of addressing the level of tuition itself, this year the SU is also lobbying administration to implement a new tuition policy, to inform all students of why tuition is increased (if it is increased) and where the money will go, and for continued ‘quality money.’ We must also lobby the public and the government however, as it is very important that we have a strong tuition campaign, especially in a year when the province is reviewing its own tuition policy.
The current situation is unacceptable; there is a viable alternative to the current state of affairs. The student movement in Alberta must become more active. Debate ideas with your friends and family, talk to your SU elected officials, volunteer with the SU, call your MLA and MP, write a letter to the editor, call in to a radio show, participate in a media stunt: be heard! Together, we are capable of influencing the government and university administration to make the significant changes needed to Alberta’s post-secondary education system.