Students offered a spot at the University of Calgary might soon have to pay to hold on to it.

The U of C is looking at bringing in a $400 admission deposit fee to cut down the number of students who accept admission but then bail at the last minute.

Other post-secondary institutions

  • Mount Royal University currently charges a $200 admissions deposit.
  • SAIT students, meanwhile, pay a $250 deposit for admission that is applied to their tuition balance for the first semester.

"We do see people who commit by accepting their offer, but not actually registering in classes — or in some cases registering in classes and then not coming because they've actually committed somewhere else where they've paid a deposit,” said associate registrar Scott Robinson.

If the non-refundable deposit fee goes ahead, it would not take effect until at least the fall 2016. Deposits will go toward tuition once students commit to staying at the U of C.  

Hana Kadri, vice president academic of the U of C Students’ Union, said she welcomes the idea.

"It will give students an opportunity to decide which institution they're going to earlier on. So it will give them an opportunity to plan earlier on in the summer,” she said.

“On the flip side, it will also help wait-listed students — you know, give them a chance to know earlier on in their decision-making process whether or not the U of C has become an option."

But third-year student Arthur Lu doesn’t like the idea.

"I think it would be pretty unfair, and I would be unhappy with it in case I do change my mind about going to the U of C,” he said. 

With files from CBC's Rachel Maclean