Lakehead offers free tuition

Students with 95 per cent high school average won’t pay a dime


Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ont., is giving Canadian students thousands of good reasons to keep their grades up.

The school says it will offer free tuition to students from a recognized Canadian high school with a 95 per cent average.

Recruiting manager Robert Perrier says the scholarship is renewable for up to four years at the same level, provided at least an 85 per cent average is maintained in each subsequent academic year.

The school claims no other Ontario university offers such a reward over four years. Lakehead officials say they want to retain the best and brightest students both locally and across the country.

Lakehead, with more than 7,500 students and 2,000 faculty and staff, is home to the western campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine and has a satellite campus in Orillia, Ont.

-with a report from CP 

Filed under:

Lakehead offers free tuition

  1. I don’t how how inflated Lakehead’s grades may be, but an 85% average at the university level is much harder to maintain than 95% at the high school level. It’s an interesting program, but I hope students are given appropriate advice about how high the bar is really set.

    Incidentally, while I applaud programs of this nature generally (I’m not against merit-based scholarships, and for that you need criteria) some measurements are very counter productive. It’s sad when you see a student who is very successful at university by any ordinary standard having a fit over his or her A- in a course, and then arguing with the professor over it. What an incredible way to screw up what should otherwise be a positive and rewarding relationship.

    Faculty already feel they are under the gun for certain notable cut-offs and want to be very sure a student deserves to be suspended before failing them in a course if that’s going to be the outcome. It’s unfair to place a faculty member in the position of deciding if a very good student is so outstanding that he or she deserves to keep the free ride – which just about necessitates A’s across the board. And yet, students will be doing the math (can you blame them?) and confronting their instructors with that consequence. A program like this needs better and more flexible metrics.

  2. I remember when I was at the University of Ottawa, there was a incremental amount of admission scholarships (from say, around 500$ if you high school average was over 80% to 3500$ if it was over 95%, while tuition was about 4300$ a year). Just as in Lakehead, you needed 85% to keep your scholarship (no matter which one you’ve got).

    I think they still have a similar system but I don’t know if the highest level of scholarship is nearly equal to tuition fees now… in any case, I remember reading in the student newspaper that around two thirds of scholarships didn’t get renewed after the first year. Even in the highest bracket (the 95%+), I remember that more than 10% of students didn’t manage to keep a 85% average.

    This certainly plays in the university’s favor, but that means it acts more as a marketing tool than real financial aid. (Also, once you lose it after your first year, you can’t get it back, no matter how well you performed). That’s one reason where I think “access” to education should factor in completion rates and not only how many people are admitted.

  3. Although Lakehead’s program certainly sounds nice, I’m not wholly convinced that it is actually that much different from what other universities offer. Many Canadian universities have very large renewable scholarships set aside for exceptional candidates–perhaps the difference here is that the 95% bar for Lakehead is in some sense lower than what you might need at other universities, which might require equivalent grades plus evidence of leadership, community service or athletics, and there might not be as many of them to give out.

    In reality though, even if the universities don’t offer a renewable scholarship of this nature, it has been my experience that students who manage to maintain ~85% averages in university don’t have any problems with money. Most universities offer a wide range of in-course scholarships worth anywhere from $200-$3000, and people with these averages typically pick up several of these per year. A good friend on mine just recently graduated with over $5000 in surplus scholarship money because his high grades usually meant that he picked up enough money each term to cover his tuition entirely, plus a bit more now and then, even though he did not have a renewable scholarship going in.

  4. This makes no sense so Lakehead is going to allow students with a 95% average to attend University when they would probably have attended anyways. Rather the student who is an average student at 70% will either jump into the work force because he not as privileged as the so called smarter student and can’t afford schooling. DUMB and DUMBER. They should lower tuition for all students instead of profiling them for there grades and averages. We need to promote education to a wider audience in Canada not to those who have 95% averages that will attend University anyways. I can assure you that majority of those averages are mocked up and majority of students will choose higher prestige schools than Lakehead. U of T, McMaster, Wilfred Laurier, Trent etc.

Sign in to comment.