Top CEOs back McGill tuition hikes for business program

Quebec education minister stands firm on threat to reduce university’s operating grant


Business leaders are backing McGill in its decision to move its MBA program onto a completely self-funded model, and hike tuition to nearly $30,000, despite threats from the Quebec government to cut the university’s operating grant, the Globe and Mail reported.

In an open letter to Quebec education minister Michelle Courchesne, 45 of the province’s top CEOs write that the minister’s uncompromising position to cut funding to the program lest the school reconsider, is “encouraging mediocrity,” the Globe reported.

“We won’t build the future of Quebec by asking universities to choose between excellence and access,” the letter reads.

The controversy over the tuition hike hit in January when Le Devoir broke a story about a letter the minister sent to McGill principal Heather Munroe-Blum. In it, Courchesne expressed her disappointment in McGill’s decision to increase tuition for the MBA program to $29,500, writing the increase “contravenes the very principle of accessibility.”

Since then the minister has vowed to cut provincial funding to the program by $28,000 per student enrolled if the school refuses to abide by the province’s tuition rules. Tuition fees for Quebec students are currently less than $1,700, among the lowest in the country.

While Minister Courchesne is not backing down, and her aide Tamara Davis told the Globe that “no exception” can be made for McGill, Quebec’s powerhouse CEOs are standing up for the school. Their argument? Universities can’t be expected to exist on an equal playing field if they intend to attract and compete for talent.

The McGill Daily reported in September that McGill’s MBA students were informed of the tuition increase via e-mail by MBA director and professor Don Melville. Tuition would jump to $29,500 for September 2010 — more than a 1,663 per cent increase for Quebec residents, 531 per cent for out-of-province students, and 48 per cent for international students


Top CEOs back McGill tuition hikes for business program

  1. I’m curious to find out what the position of McGill’s Post Graduate Student Society is on this…..

  2. Let me guess: PGSS opposes the fee hike.

  3. But McGill’s MBA students association supports it.

    These dumb ass student unions should quit sticking themselves in the 70’s. We’ve all moved on from communism

  4. Mr. Aboyeji,

    Didn’t you run for an elected student union position in part on the platform of opposing fee increases at Waterloo? So did you change your mind in a month or did you recognize that students would never vote for someone in favour of market solutions and higher fees and decided to just lie to student voters?

    I remember a lot of references to how Waterloo keeps raising fees and how you’re opposed to it, but most of the website is not cached. Here’s one choice quote that I was amble to recover:
    “Now anyone who was under any illusions that the increase in fees was going to help increase education quality is smoking shit I want into.”

    Students deserve hypocrisy?

  5. This should be the case anyway: the province should not be paying for MBAs where the overwhelming benefit of the degree is attained by the student and not society. It is a subsidy for large business and the future rich. No MBA program should receive provincial funding, and schools should be able to set tuition at competitive rates, and both contribute to scholarships to ensure underprivileged students have access. Everyone is happy.

  6. Pingback: McClean’s On Campus – Top CEOs back McGill tuition hikes for business program | Free Education Montreal

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