New Brunswick students offered low tuition at U of Maine Presque Isle

Their ‘Good Neighbor’ grant allows students from six western New Brunswick high schools to save up to $12,000 during their four years at the school.

The university is offering students from 6 high schools at par tuition for the fall and winter terms

David McTimoney is the superintendent of the Anglophone West School District. (CBC)

The University of Maine Presque Isle are making an effort to attract more Canadian students by allowing them to pay tuition at par.

Their 'Good Neighbor' grant allows students from six western New Brunswick high schools to save up to $12,000 during their four years at the school.

"Where we are the closest university we are trying to bring back more Canadian students," said president, Linda Schott. "They have faded away partially because of changes in the New Brunswick government and because the change in the dollar."

The cost for Canadian students to attend UMPI is $330 per credit hour, or $9,900 for a full-time course load.

The grant could save a Canadian student $3,069 from their annual tuition bill.

"Starting this May they will pay tuition at par. We will look at the currency rate in July for the fall semester and in December for the winter semester and set the rate that they will pay."

"We only had four students from these high schools last year. We are hoping to at least double that."

Schott said the grant isn't meant to poach students from New Brunswick universities such as UNB or St. Thomas, but to give students more options for affordable education.

"We certainly realize there are fine universities in New Brunswick and we do know we are the closest university. Some of these students cannot afford to move to Fredericton and attend school at UNB."

She said many students would be able to commute to the University of Maine therefore reducing their college expenses.

Schott said that Anglophone School District West, including its superintendent, has already signed onto the idea.

"David McTimoney was here and several principals and guidance counsellors. I think everyone agreed it was a good partnership… we see it as serving a particular region and not as something that's going to be a dire threat to schools in Fredericton."

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