CANADA TAKES STOCK
reveal growing pains around domestic
and international integration and
students overly reliant on part-time work
ISSUE #25 | THE PIE REVIEW | 33
“Reports in national newspapers
A central tenet to the new strategy is also focused on ensur-ing
more Canadians study abroad, so reciprocal study links
are built up. Universities Canada and Colleges and Institutes
Canada have been tasked with administering the CAN$95
million earmarked for education and work abroad. Randall
Martin, executive director of British Columbia Council for
International Education, describes this as a “once-in-a ca-reer
infusion of funds to support outbound mobility”.
The strategy aims to send 11,000 Canadian students
abroad over the next five years. Currently, less than three per
cent of Canadian students study abroad and the majority
who do go to the UK, France and the US. Half of the fun-ding
is for students from underrepresented backgrounds.
In anticipation of the new push for outbound mobility,
Memorial University has hired a new staff member who
will focus on increasing participation for underrepresented
student groups. The international office is collaborating with
their Aborginal Resource Office and their disability centre to
make sure students receive the support they need.
“For the first time, we’re bringing those units into
conversations about study abroad and starting to talk to
them about what their concerns would be, recognising that
our role is more sort of writing the funding proposals and
helping with the logistics. They know what those students
need,” Knutson says.
Finances remain the number one barrier preventing
Canadian students from going abroad. Durham College in
Ontario launched a bursary program funded by revenue
from international tuition designed to help alleviate these
financial challenges in 2016-2017.
Building more institutional links abroad is also within the
scope of the new strategy. According to Martin, institutions
in British Columbia are focused on southeast Asia and Latin
America. BCCIE serves as the national secretariat for Uni-versity
Mobility in Asia and the Pacific, a consortium of
600 colleges and universities around the Pacific Rim.
“We’re trying to push this on a national level to get more
institutions to join,” Martin says. “We’re trying to actually
access some of the funding from the strategy to help send
our students to a greater diversity of countries and to attract
students from a greater diversity of countries.”
Growing number of public-private partnerships
One of the ways HEIs in some provinces are diversifying is
also through the development of public-private partnerships,
although these have existed for a while.
The appeal of living in metropolitan
centres with access to global cuisine
(such as Chinatown, Vancouver) is
clear, but Canada wants to build up
PHOTO: TOURISM VANCOUVER/NELSON MOUELLIC