International News Desk – At Home and Abroad

At Home: Tuition Hikes on the Table for Post-Secondary Students
With the recent downturn in Alberta’s economic fortunes due to what many consider an over-reliance on a single commodity, Alberta is seeking new ways to attain a balanced provincial budget, so as to echo and amplify the business cycle rather than counter-act it. Premier Jim Prentice has repeatedly suggested that the primary way he is looking to balance the budget is by cutting what Alberta spends on public sector workers, and possibly by applying additional regressive taxation and fee systems to Albertans.

Post-secondary institutions are not exempted from these ideas, as the Minister of Innovation and Advanced Education has stated in the Globe and Mail that no decisions have been made on broader changes to post-secondary funding, with adjusting tuition being specifically singled out as “one technique that institutions have to maintain their competitiveness,” this is in stark contrast to issues of royalty hikes, carbon taxes, or increases to corporate taxation, upon which the broader decisions have been made?they won’t happen.

Around the Globe: Singapore Curtailing Trade in International Education
The Law Society of Singapore has taken the step of removing eight law schools from the UK from its list of approved institutions, and so will no longer recognize students coming from those institutions for admission to the Singapore bar. The Law Society was up front in declaring in a report from the University World News that the move came ’due to law graduates outnumbering training contracts available and the change was “only logical”’. There are typically around 500 training contracts available and local universities usually graduate around 400 students each year. The schools affected include Exeter, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Southampton, and the School of Oriental and African Studies (or SOAS) in the University of London.

There remains eleven British universities on the accepted list, and the two universities in Canada recognized by the Singapore Law Society will not be affected by this move, nor will the ten Australian, four American, or two in New Zealand.