Queen’s raising tuition for incoming undergraduate students from outside Ontario

University “confident the risk of revenue loss [for 2022-23] is within manageable limits”

Queen’s is continuing to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on its budget.
Credit: 
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Queen’s released its 2022-23 Operating Budget, which plans for the University to be in a steady financial position after drawing $43.5 million from its reserves.

Student Tuition and Fees

The COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on international student enrollment is one of the University’s greatest financial challenges, according to the Operating Budget Report (OBR).

Applications for international undergraduate student visas to study at Queen’s are down 15 per cent this year compared to last year.

The University will not raise tuition for current students and incoming students from Ontario due to the Ontario government’s ongoing tuition freeze, which keeps tuition at pre-pandemic levels.

This freeze does not apply to incoming undergraduate students from other provinces, however. Consequently, the University is increasing tuition fees for these students by five per cent.

The Ontario and non-Ontario tuition fee breakdowns are available for each faculty on the Office of the Registrar’s website.

In April, applications for first year direct-entry programmes to Queen’s were up 8.4 per cent from last year, representing a greater than the 6.2 per cent average increase for Ontario universities, according to recent data from the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC).

Applications for graduate studies are down seven per cent from the same time last year. According to the OBR, the University expects more enrollments closer to the end of the admissions cycle.

The University expects student fee revenues to increase by $19.9 million because of increased enrollment capacity brought by the new Albert Street residence building and the easing of pandemic restrictions, allowing for reopened Athletics & Recreation (A&R) activities. 

In the 2022-23 year, after investments from the Ontario Government, 20 new spaces will be created in the medical school for undergraduate students. 30 new postgraduate seats will be filled in the 2023-24 year.

University Services

The OBR said the University has “reduced flexibility” due to commitments in the 2021-22 budget cycle that require multi-year spending, such as upgrades to infrastructure.

The University intends to spend an additional $7.2 million on its services, namely student academic and wellness services, an expansion of the Queen’s National Scholars Program, and investments in data analytics programs.

The expected increase in energy costs led the University to add $1.8 million to its utilities budget compared to last year.

The University will invest $1.3 million into information technology and $500 thousand into cybersecurity, both flagged as high-priority by The Provost Advisory Committee on Budget (PACB).

Faculty Budgets

The University plans to invest an additional $10 million to support research efforts across the faculties. Faculty and school budget allocations are planned to increase by $7.5 million this year.

The Faculty of Health Sciences will see the largest budget increase of any faculty at $7 million. The Smith School of Business is budgeted as the second largest recipient of funding.

The operating budget for the Faculty of Arts and Science—the largest faculty at Queen’s—will be reduced by approximately $9 million. It is the only faculty receiving a cut.

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