Student Senate Caucus in collaboration with the University of Manitoba is happy to announce the compassionate tuition credit initiative.
We know the labour dispute this past semester was acutely difficult for the student body and caused unexpected stress and anxiety. To address this, student senate caucus in collaboration with the University of Manitoba created the compassionate tuition credit initiative.
Over the past 8 weeks, Student Senate Caucus has engaged in dialogue with administration, the Office of the Registrar and Enrolment Services, and alumni to determine which approach would best support the academic, financial, and overall well-being of students at the U of M. Throughout this process, Student Senate Caucus, and UMSU, made our stance clear: we expect actions which reflect a culture of compassion where every student is considered and accommodated.
In past instances where academic scheduling has been gravely interrupted, a compassionate grading scheme has been implemented. However, while working on a compassionate grading plan for 2022, we heard current and former UM students express angst surrounding the impact of this scheme when applying to external professional programs. Simultaneously, students raised concerns about the ever-increasing cost of attending university. For both reasons, Student Senate Caucus unanimously approved the pivot from a compassionate grading scheme to a compassionate credit initiative in consultation with University administration and the Office of the Registrar and Enrolment Services on January 11th, 2022.
The Compassionate Tuition Credit Initiative
This tuition credit initiative allows for students to apply for a tuition refund if they voluntarily withdrew (VW’d) from a Fall 2021 strike-interrupted course due to their inability to complete the course in January.
This will exclusively be a tuition refund – additional fees such as the sports and recreation, student services and laboratory fees will not be refunded. When applying for the compassionate tuition refund, students will be required to provide additional information and documentation to support their application. If approved, the refund will be applied to the student’s Aurora account as a credit.
The University of Manitoba Students’ Union and the University of Manitoba recognize the financial and academic stress students experienced during and following the Fall 2021 UMFA UM Labour Dispute. Significant efforts have been undertaken to ensure that students in need of support as a result of the labour disruption receive it. For example, the UM Strike Relief Fund was established to support students who experienced financial hardship as a direct result of the strike, with over $3.2M allocated to this fund. While applications to this fund closed effective January 28th, approximately 4,000 students benefited, and additional emergency bursary funds remain accessible to eligible students through Financial Aid and Awards and the Faculty of Graduate Studies.
A link to the application and further details will be shared on Monday, February 21st, 2022.
What If I did not VW or I need to retake the course?
Students who did not receive a satisfactory grade, failed a course, or chose to voluntarily withdraw (VW) from a course are encouraged to further familiarize themselves with the Repeated Course Policy.
Students should further note that the Limited Access Policy, a rule which previously gave priority to students taking a course for the first time, has been suspended. Therefore, students who have VW’d a course or are looking to retake a course they have previously repeated, will not be subjected to limited access in that course.
Thank you to all students who provided testimonies, made inquiries, or spoke to their respective senators. Student consultation remained a critical step in our proposal development and negotiation – the approval of this proposal could not have been achieved without the support of the student body. We would also like to thank The University of Manitoba administration and the Office of the Registrar and Enrolment Services as they have been a collaborative and constructive partner on this initiative. We encourage all students to take advantage of the resources providing support for those affected by the labour disruption.
Again, thank you to all students and stakeholders who allowed and helped this initiative become a reality. For further details you can click the links below or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
Links with headings to all pertinent information sites
Repeated Course Policy – 2016_09_01.pdf (umanitoba.ca)
Limited Access Policy – 2016_09_01.pdf (umanitoba.ca)