Montreal

Bishop's University welcomes record number of students to deal with deficit

A record number of students moved into their dorms at Bishop's University this Labour Day weekend, giving the Sherbrooke institution a much-needed boost to its coffers.

University had $4.5M deficit last year, intentionally admitting more students to deal with shortfall

Vice-rector Miles Turnbull says Bishop's University is intentionally admitting more students to deal with its financial difficulties. (Radio-Canada)

A record number of students moved into their dorms at Bishop's University this Labour Day weekend, giving the school a much-needed boost to its coffers.

This year, 845 new students will begin classes at the Sherbrooke institution – one the largest cohorts in its history.

Of those students, 85 per cent are from outside of the region, representing about 60 different nationalities.

With tuition at about $2,300 a year for Quebecers and up to $20,000 for international students, the increased influx of students was an "intentional" way for the university to deal with its financial difficulties, said its vice-rector Miles Turnbull.

The small liberal arts university hasn't been able to balance its books in recent years, racking up a $4.5 million deficit last year. 

"We were aiming for a record in our financial recovery attempts," Turnbull said, adding that having more students "changes the bottom line figures."

In the near future, the university would like see its total student body increase from 2,300 to 2,700.

But the university doesn't believe this goal will affect the closeness between students and faculty – a key factor that influences many students's decision to attend the Eastern Townships school.

"I chose Bishop's 'cause my mom's friends went here and it had a great reputation and small classes," said incoming philosophy student Josh Hoekstra.

"It's a great time, great place, great people."

With files from Radio-Canada

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