FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government is making targeted investments in post-secondary education as part of its 2017-18 budget.

“Your government knows how important creating jobs, growing the economy, and securing and enhancing health care and education are to New Brunswickers,” said Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault. “Investing in education and training represents an investment in our people, our economy and our future.”

The provincial government will provide an additional $45 million over four years to invest in the four publicly funded universities. Work continues with these universities to lay out the following:

  • Government funding commitments for the next four years.
  • Tuition predictability for New Brunswick students for the next four years.
  • Funding for pilot projects at universities in an effort to increase enrollment and pursue research and development opportunities, among other priorities.
  • An agreement for these four universities to appear annually before the legislative assembly.

The government recently announced its Tuition Relief for the Middle Class program. This program, along with the previously existing Free Tuition Program, will provide tuition relief to as many as 70 per cent of students attending publicly funded universities and colleges in New Brunswick, while mitigating some of the enrollment challenges these institutions are experiencing.

The department is also providing students with opportunities to increase their work experience in their field of study. The Student Employment Experience Development program has been revamped to make it more student focused. The department is also partnering with universities, employers and students to enhance experiential learning opportunities to help students receive more work experience in their chosen discipline through co-op placements.

In addition, through the One Job Pledge program, the government is working to retain trained young professionals through a wage incentive for employers when they hire a recent post-secondary graduate in a job related to his or her field of study.

The government is also investing more than $10 million in the Youth Employment Fund to help employers hire young New Brunswickers.