Call to action: Freeze tuition for the 2020/2021 academic school year for NSCAD University

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NSCAD University’s Board of Governors are looking to raise tuition during a global pandemic despite pleas from students to freeze tuition for the 2020/2021 academic school year. 

    The stress of the pandemic has highly affected everyone's ability to work and function just in daily life. with the increasing unemployment and the cost of living, many are struggling financially. NSCAD is now adding further stress to students by adding another significant increase in tuition. 

  Students and families alike have been struggling to find and maintain employment during a global pandemic and economic recession. Where the summer semester would normally have been spent working and saving, students have not been afforded this opportunity while businesses and industries close for social distancing. Heavy reliance on the CERB and CESB have been how many of us have been able to provide a basic income to cover necessary expenses, yet these emergency funds will not last forever.

One student shares their experience with working to afford NSCAD University’s already high tuition,

 "As an international student at NSCAD, an increase in tuition would strongly affect me and my family, who is already in great economic pressure to help me complete my studies abroad in hopes that it will provide me better life opportunities.

Mexico is currently in a great economic crisis and our currency's worth decreases more and more every month. I had to withdraw from this past Winter semester because my parents couldn't afford it. I planned to work during said semester so I could pay for my classes but because of Covid have been unemployed since.

With all that said, and increase in tuition will most likely mean the end of my time at NSCAD and in Canada.

I find an increase in tuition completely inconsiderate and unjustifiable given the current social and economic crisis that the world is in." 

How this is effecting NSCAD students: 

- Students have lost the opportunity to work at summer full-time jobs which helps to fund their school year 

- Tuition has raised significantly over the past 5 years (over 50%), now has the highest tuition of any arts university in the country

- Students across the country are being adversely affected by COVID-19, and have been forced to rely on the CERB and CESB to cover basic expenses.

Parent Statement -- “It will be a domino effect with students not being able to stay on campus at all, regrettably, drop out to survive. We have expected the NSCAD community to continue to treat her like family, as my daughter has always put it.  This will be the worse divorce ever if NSCAD parts with the best interests of its students and teachers during this time of the pandemic, with their lack of work and lack of studio programming.”

We need NSCAD university and the Board of Governors to acknowledge: 

- Students understand they are unable to attend in-person classes and are not asking the university to reopen prematurely as that is detrimental to their safety.

- Morally, we fear that a tuition hike would make higher education inaccessible to underprivileged communities and would disproportionately impact Black, Indigenous, and Students of Colour.

- CERB/CESB is temporary and is currently being used to cover basic living expenses. Students are relying on this completely for their income and cannot afford another unforeseen hardship like a tuition hike.

A domestic student says, 

"We are in the middle of global pandemic. Online classes will not be the same or worth nearly as much. The costs of these classes should be LESS, if changed at all. FREEZE TUITION NOW.”

   NSCAD students are calling on the Board of Governors to freeze tuition for the 2020/2021 academic school year, and commit to a plan to lower tuition over upcoming years. 


For further reading, please see SUNSCAD’s official statement: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WX4Agw9Zcv7cAKuzUFQNgZPW3U0zXQUTTA_HqKrQ9XA/edit?usp=sharing

 

We ask that you please publicly declare your support by signing this petition and stand in solidarity with NSCAD students.

 

In solidarity with a tuition freeze at NSCAD University,


The Student Union of NSCAD University