I doubt that the majority of Canadians have glanced at the PC’s forty-four page “changebook” or the Liberals’ sixty-page party platform. This means that the average Canadian will decide who they will vote for based on issues they read about in the news, ideology, political affiliation and party leader attachment. It’s hard to navigate through all the different speeches Ontario leaders have made and follow which promises are being made by which leader.
Students and new graduates should think carefully about what the leaders are promising to help them pursue their post-secondary education and find a meaningful job after graduation.
On Thursday, October 6, Ontario will vote for a new premier. Ontario has the highest undergraduate tuition rates in the province and second highest graduate school tuition rates.
Ontario also has the lowest per-student funding in the country. Student debt in Ontario has also risen by 20% over the last decade.
Find out what the candidates are promising students and new graduates here to counter these challenges:
Dalton McGuinty – Liberal
- Cut post-secondary tuition by 30% for middle-class families (total joint income of less than $160,000 annually) which will save around $730 annually per student in college and $1,600 per student in university
- Create another 60,000 post-secondary spaces in Ontario
- Build three new undergraduate campuses to encourage students to study in Ontario
- Provide grants for low-income Ontario families
- Keep the cap on student debt to $7,300 per year of undergraduate study
- Reduce graduates’ loan repayment until they can find work and, if they cannot, loan payments may be reduced to zero
- Give an additional six-month grace period for loan repayments for graduates who work in the non-profit sector
- Triple the number of start-ups in Ontario within the next five years to increase jobs for new graduates
- Have eight “trade missions” where the premier advertises Ontario businesses around the world
Tim Hudak – PC
- Increase spending on K-12 education by $2 billion by the end of first term in office
- Reduce unnecessary bureaucracy in school boards
- Increase technology in the classroom: allow parents to view their children’s standardized test results online
- Create up to 60,000 post-secondary spaces in Ontario
- End Liberal foreign scholarship program
- End the “one-size-fits-all” funding of Ontario’s education system by evaluating the individual needs of each schools
- Redirect the $30 million the current McGuinty government gives to foreign students to Ontario students instead
Andrea Horwath – NDP
- Freeze post-secondary tuition for four years
- Eliminate interest from the provincial portion of student loans, saving students $300 million annually
Which issues do you want your future premier to address to help you pursue your undergraduate education and find a good job after graduation?
Note: A similar article was first published on TalentEgg.ca, Canada’s number one career resource for students and new graduates.