Open letter to Colleen Wirth, director of student services, Yukon College:
I am a student in the Renewable Resources program at the college. I will finish my diploma this spring, and will not be returning to the college this fall. I am quite pleased about that, considering the 20 per cent tuition raise you have just implemented. Considering that tuition fees have already been raised twice in the last couple years this additional increase is ludicrous, especially when considering the reason behind it. The logic that the increased fees will bring more students to the college is a complete fallacy. One of the reasons I chose Yukon College in the first place was because of the low tuition rates. The high cost of living in Whitehorse, together with the challenge of finding a decent place to rent, already makes being a student here challenging. Increasing the cost of attending college here will only cause students to seek education elsewhere.
Furthermore, the quality of the classes here does not warrant higher fees. Within the Renewable Resources program I have been quite frustrated with poor-quality instructors. There have indeed been gifted instructors as well, but unfortunately they do not seem to be the norm. Costs should not be increased until you can ensure that all of the college’s instructors are of high quality. I was willing to put up with the frustrations of badly-taught classes because it was more financially viable for me to attend these classes rather than attend a different institution.
The lack of sufficient study areas at the college is another drawback of this institution. The new computer lab in the library is a distracting place to work, when there are computers available at all. The rest of the computer labs in the college are often busy with classes.
Finally, the fact that students coming to Whitehorse from out of the territory are prevented from applying for STEP jobs is another reason students will not seek education at Yukon College. Raising tuition fees may extinguish the last reason people will seek to study at Yukon College at all.