Media Advisory - Students available for comment on Ontario Throne Speech

TORONTO, March 8 /CNW/ - In addition to discussing how to improve Ontario's economy, it is anticipated that the Speech from the Throne will include the government's intention to recruit more international students to the province.

International students help to diversify the experience of all students at colleges and universities, but have become relied upon to cover operating costs as a result of under funding within the sector. Students will comment on the need to reform policies to ensure international students are treated fairly if recruited to study in the province.

THE FACTS

    
    FEES: While Ontario students pay average fees of $5,951 for undergraduate
    and $8,642 for graduate students, international students can pay between
    $14,000 to $38,000 per year, with no guarantee from year to year of the
    amount their fees may increase.

    GRADUATE STUDENTS: The Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) is one of the
    few provincial forms of financial assistance for graduate students. Only
    60 of the 2,000 graduate students who receive an OGS are international
    students.

    STUDENT JOBS: The Ontario Work Study Programme provides a major source of
    on-campus job opportunities for students. International students are
    excluded from this programme.

    HEALTH COVERAGE: International students pay more than $800 a year for
    OHIP-equivalent private health insurance. Students with two or more
    dependants are required to pay over $3,000. In some cases, international
    students have been denied emergency hospital coverage for not paying
    their costs upfront.

    THE ECONOMY: Ontario has the highest international student population in
    Canada at 35,000, and they alone contributed $2.1 billion to Ontario's
    economy in 2008, according to the Conference Board of Canada.
    

The Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario unites more than 300,000 college and university students studying at public post-secondary institutions across the province.

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students - Ontario

For further information: For further information: Hamid Osman, Ontario National Executive Representative, (647) 448-2823; Joel Duff, Ontario Organiser, (416) 925-3825


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