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Date: April 05, 2004

Budget Maintains Program Quality and Provides for Growth

The University of Victoria board of governors today approved a budget framework for the 2004-05 fiscal year that provides for growth in student enrolment, maintains the quality of academic programs, and funds some modest improvements to programs and services. The restoration of provincial government funding and trimming of anticipated expenditures are keeping proposed tuition increases less than originally forecast.

The framework calls for a 16.6-per-cent tuition increase for domestic undergraduate students and a seven-per-cent increase for graduate students. It also includes an infusion of an additional $2 million in student financial assistance. With this package, UVic will exceed its goal to be among the top 20 per cent of Canadian universities in terms of financial aid for students.

The tuition increases in the budget framework are required because of increased operating costs, the additional costs associated with providing spaces for 372 more full-time students, and the improvements in programs and student support services.

“The budget framework reflects a balance between program quality protection and improvements, tuition increases and student financial aid,” says UVic President Dr. David Turpin. “Maintenance and enhancement of the quality of education at UVic is the key. We recognize tuition increases may create hardship for some students and have increased student financial assistance dramatically.”

The budget framework provides for a provincial operating grant of $123.8 million to UVic to fund the equivalent of spaces for 14,552 full-time undergraduate and graduate students. At the same time, the university’s financial commitments have risen $15.3 million over last year.

The university’s operating budget for 2004-05 is $224.7 million. Tuition accounts for 34 per cent of the university’s operating revenue. B.C. universities are required by law to balance their budgets.

Tuition for domestic arts and science undergraduates will rise in 2004-05 to $4,238 from $3,635 while graduate tuition will increase to $4,404 from $4,116. Tuition for international undergraduate students will increase to $12,500 from $11,000. This reflects year two of a four-year progression to move to a cost-recovery model for international undergraduate students.

The budget framework also provides for improvements such as $400,000 to UVic’s libraries for acquisitions, $687,000 for quality improvements such as new course sections, added faculty in high-demand areas and new resources for students with a disability, and $180,000 to provide technical support for upgrading information systems.

UVic’s tuition increases follow similar increases for 2004-05 at Simon Fraser University and UBC.

The additional student spaces and funding announced by the provincial government on March 26 are not part of the budget framework and any ongoing impacts will be incorporated into future budgets.

For budget highlights view the attached backgrounder.

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Media contacts:
Dr. David Turpin, President
Bruce Kilpatrick (UVic Communications) at (250) 721-7638


Backgrounders:
UVic 2004-2005 Budget - Highlights

UVic media releases and other resources for journalists are available on the World Wide Web at http://communications.uvic.ca/media

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