WINNIPEG – The Canadian Union of Public Employees is deeply concerned with the proposed continuing fee increase for graduate and post-graduate students at the University of Manitoba.
This week, the University proposed a nearly 350 per cent increase to graduate student continuing fees, which they claim will be allocated towards student supports. Continuing fees for graduate students will increase from $703 to $3,000 by September 2016.
“Many graduate students finance their degrees by working part time on campus as teaching assistants, graders, instructors or as researchers” explained Ana Vialard Hart, President of CUPE 3909 at the University of Manitoba, “this fee increase will undermine their work dollar-for-dollar”.
The University has attempted to massively increase continuing fees at least four times over the past decade, each time being shut down due to student outrage against the fees.
“By asking us to accept this massive fee increase, the University is essentially asking 60 per cent of our membership to work for free” said Vialard Hart, “Our members work, but will end up giving that money right back to their employer through these fees”.
CUPE will be sending a letter to Minister of Education James Allum expressing opposition to the proposed increase.
CUPE 3909 represents more than 2,000 members at the University of Manitoba who work as grader-markers, teaching assistants, sessional instructors and librarians.