Montreal

Quebec threatens to fine McGill University

Quebec Education Minister Michelle Courchesne is threatening to slash public funding for McGill University if the school goes ahead with a plan to raise tuition fees for its graduate business program.

Quebec Education Minister Michelle Courchesne is threatening to slash public funding for McGill University if the school goes ahead with a plan to raise tuition fees for its graduate business program.

The Montreal university has announced plans to increase the tuition for its masters of business administration program to $29,500, from approximately $2,000, in time for the next school year.

Courchesne said she wrote McGill principal Heather Monroe-Blum in January, warning that the university required permission from the government to change tuition fees.

The penalty would cost the school nearly $30,000 per student, the minister said.

"Why would we, why would Quebecers accept that we give the same amount of money while they are charging $30,000 to individuals," Courchesne said on Tuesday. "I don't think that's a good use of public funds."

University officials said the school can no longer afford to subsidize its MBA program.

The government's $12,000 subsidy per student does not cover the $22,000 cost of the prestigious program, they said.

Officials have pointed out that the MBA program at Harvard University costs students $110,000 a year.

But, other Quebec institutions, including the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University, the University of Laval and the University of Montreal's business school, also offer quality programs while respecting the government's regulations, Courchesne said.

With files from The Canadian Press

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