Students Host High Profile Panel For Forum On Ontario Universities

Monday, September 20, 2004

  • CSA Academics Commissioner, Jenn Watt

    CSA Academics Commissioner, Jenn Watt

Written by cannon/CSA

It isn’t easy being a student these days; rising tuition fees, ballooning student debt, and dramatic cuts to government funding all represent serious threats to Ontario’s public post secondary education system. Recently, the federal Liberals announced a review of the provinces post secondary education system led by former Premier Bob Rae. On September 21st, the University of Guelph’s Central Student Association (CSA) will be holding an open forum to discuss the fate of Ontario’s universities. The forum will include a high profile panel including University of Guelph President Alastair Summerlee, Rae review member Leslie Church, CSA Academic Commissioner Jenn Watt and University of Guelph professors Carol Dauda and William Frisbee. The forum will be held in the Bullring and is open to the general public. It will begin at 6:30pm and will be free of charge.

“There’s no doubt that our education system is in trouble as a result of mismanagement at the hands of the provincial government. The McGuinty Liberals have promised change but students have yet to see any improvement in the classroom or on the campus” stated Central Student Association External Commissioner Ryan White “we need to reexamine our public education system and find out what problems exist and how we can fix them before it’s too late.”

“The University system is at a critical juncture. Paradoxically the system is both the worst funded in Canada, has some of the highest tuition levels yet many Ontario Universities rank highly in national rankings” said forum participant and Guelph President Alastair Summerlee. Summerlee added “imagine the lead position Ontario universities could take in providing affordable, high-quality education that would be internationally recognized if the system were funded better. The Rae Panel provides a unique opportunity to make a difference in the funding and therefore the quality of education in the province.”

White added, “students need to make our voices heard, we need to advocate for a more accessible, higher quality education system. Education is a right and we demand that the provincial government ensure that Ontario’s universities provide an education that is of a high quality and accessible to all people.”

The CSA provides services, support and advocacy for the more than 16,000 undergraduate students that attend the University of Guelph.

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