A representative for the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union (USSU) says that after a decade of rising tuition fees, the latest increase doesn’t stand out.
“I don’t think many students are shocked that there is an increase. I think, more or less, people are concerned either about the process or about the pattern,” USSU vice-president academic Gabe Senecal said.
Senecal called for better consultation between students and college deans about where dollars are spent. He also urged the university to develop a longer term tuition strategy that would give students a better idea of what their education will cost.
He noted that the continuous increase in tuition has roots that stretch beyond the school’s board of governors.
“The tuition was the U of S’s decision, but I think the larger picture definitely includes the amount of money the university is receiving from the province,” he said.
Senecal voiced concern both with the constant increases to tuition, and their tendency to outpace inflation.
“It ultimately hurts students whether it be during the classes they’re taking, while they’re in courses at the university or down the road when they have a pile of debt they have to pay off,” he said.
Overall, this year’s increase works out to an average of 2.5 per cent across all programs at the school. Individual programs have seen different tuition hikes. Some, like engineering, have seen no increase at all. Others, like veterinary medicine, have had tuition go up as much as five per cent.