FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government and three of the province’s four publicly funded universities have reached agreements that are meant to provide stable tuition for students and predictable multi-year funding for the universities.

“Your government is committed to making post-secondary education in our province accessible and affordable for all students,” said Post-Secondary Education Minister Roger Melanson. “With these memorandums of understanding, we are continuing to make students a priority by also ensuring that tuition rates are predictable and stable for years to come. I am proud of the memorandums that have been reached and want to recognize the quality education that these institutions provide to their students. Supporting our publicly funded universities is vital to the social and economic well-being of our province, and we will continue to make students a priority.”

Agreements were reached with the University of New Brunswick, Mount Allison University and the Université de Moncton. Discussions are ongoing with St. Thomas University.

Following are some highlights of the memorandums, which cover the 2017-18 to 2020-21 academic years:

  • Increases to the universities’ operational funding will be one per cent in each of the first three years, followed by two per cent in 2020-21.
  • Tuition increases will be capped at two per cent per year for the duration of a degree in which a New Brunswick student is already enrolled in 2018-19 or earlier.
  • Universities may undertake a tuition review for which results would only be implemented in 2019-20 and apply to new students enrolled in 2019-20.
  • Funding for pilot projects aims to increase enrolment and allow for more research and development opportunities.
  • The universities agree to appear before a committee of the legislative assembly.

This announcement is in keeping with the government’s commitment to invest an additional $45 million over four years in the province’s four publicly funded universities.

The government introduced the Free Tuition Program and Tuition Relief for the Middle Class to make post-secondary education more affordable and accessible for students. More than 6,200 students have qualified for the Free Tuition Program and more than 1,400 students have qualified for Tuition Relief for the Middle Class for the 2017-18 academic year.

The 2018-19 budget for the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour is expected to increase four per cent from the 2017-18 budget.