Students in British Columbia have launched a province-wide campaign, titled Fairness for International Students, to mobilize post-secondary students to fight for fairness, consistency, and predictability for international students in BC.
British Columbia is highly reliant on the income from international students and charges the second highest tuition fees for international students in Canada. Yet there is no regulation on tuition fee increases for international students, which leads to unpredictability for international students and could lead to issues in the post-secondary sector and BC’s economy at large.
“As the new school year begins, students’ union directors and volunteers will be on campuses engaging students to get involved, and show their support for fair treatment of international students,” said Aran Armutlu, Chairperson for the BCFS.
Fairness for International Students will focus on educating all students and BC residents about the current unfairness facing international students in BC and to understand two main avenues to call for change: administrators and the provincial government. Students will be encouraged to sign post cards which will be sent to both their institution and to the Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, calling on both parties to make the necessary institutional and provincial policy changes needed to set a cap on international tuition fee increases.
“The beauty of this campaign, is that change can come from the government and institutions alike,” said Armutlu. “While a new international strategy is being developed by the government, institutions can start today, by changing their own international tuition fee policies to instigate the fairness on their campuses.
The campaign has two asks: a regulation of international fee increases and a new international education strategy that provides sufficient supports for international students. Success of this campaign will create fairness, consistency, and predictability for international students across the province.
More information about the Fairness for International Students campaign can be found at wearebcstudents.ca/international.