SFU raises tuition for domestic and international students
This year, the University will not be receiving any increase in grants from the Provincial Government — in fact, it is expecting funding cuts over the next two years. This poses a problem for basic university functions, such as scheduled salary raises for faculty and deferred maintenance costs.
To combat this issue, SFU will be raising tuition for both domestic and international students alike. Although domestic students only need to fear a two per cent increase in tuition every year, the same protection does not apply to international students.
Therefore, international students can expect a tuition raise of eight per cent over the next three years, combined with the general two per cent raise. Therefore, by 2016 international students will be paying 30 per cent more for tuition than they do currently, while domestic students’ tuition will have increased by six per cent.
Professors want a union
According to the SFSS board of directors, SFU professors are discussing the possible formation of a union. Talks began at the SFUFA General Meeting in March 2013, where members passed a motion to explore the potential for unionization.
In British Columbia, faculty are unionized at all public higher education institutions except SFU, UVic and UNBC. However, UVic and UNBC have indicated that they are actively considering unionization. SFU professors’ decision on unionization will be made at the Fall General meeting, which is set for Nov 6.
Food Certificate Update
Since its launch on Oct 1, the new Food Bank program has been used 20 times. Although board members are happy with their decision to switch from a traditional model to a food certificate program, Food Bank working group member and SFSS external relations officer Chardaye Bueckert said they “need more hands and brains on deck” to ramp up promotion. Bueckert also expressed the Working Group’s desire to create a ‘shelf of reciprocity’ where students would be free to drop off donations or take away food items in a public and open environment. Similar models have been employed at many Canadian universities, finding them a successful alternative to the food bank while providing immediate access to food items.