Nova Scotia

NSCC faces $5.7M budget shortfall

The Nova Scotia Community College is considering a tuition hike as it grapples with a budget freeze, but no campus closures, an official says.

The Nova Scotia Community College is considering a tuition hike as it grapples with a budget freeze, but no campus closures, an official says.

The provincial government is giving NSCC $126 million this year — the same as last year. Because of rising costs, the college faces a shortfall of $5.7 million.

Michelle Lane, NSCC vice-president of advancement, said that money accounts for wage increases and cost-of-living increases on everything the college buys.

"We're not looking at cutting a campus or closing a campus, but beyond that we have to look at all areas of our organization," she said Wednesday.

There could be cuts to staffing or programs. Lane said an increase in tuition is also possible, but students would be warned well in advance.

Hailey MacLeod said any fee hike would be a challenge for students like her.

"I know for myself I'm working at a bookstore and making just a little over minimum wage so it would be a huge challenge," she said.

This year, the base tuition for programs like tourism management, culinary arts and business administration was $2,700.

About 28,000 students attend NSCC at campuses across the province.

The college expects to have a plan in place by early May.

University tuition hike

At least one university has announced it's increasing tuition this year.

Saint Mary's University in Halifax plans to hike tuition by three per cent — the maximum allowed by the provincial government.

The NDP government is cutting funding to universities by four per cent, or about $14 million, in what's expected to be a deficit budget year.

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