By Mark Brown
Student leaders and representatives of programs affected by deregulation will have the chance to voice their concerns to Western's administration today much earlier than they were able to last year.
Tuition for medicine, dentistry and the honours business administration program, the deregulated programs and student aid will be the two main issues addressed at today's meeting. Unlike the undergraduate programs at Western, tuition in the deregulated programs has not been set for next year.
"This is a very important issue to get down before we start the budgeting process," said Greg Moran, VP-academic. The administration consulted with students last year, but students were upset this consultation process occurred so late, Moran added.
The administration will use the feedback when work begins on the budget for next year, he said. Moran added although the budget comes out in March or April, he hopes to announce the decision before the budget is released.
Herbert Brill, VP-external junior for the Medical Students' Council, said he will be asking the administration to freeze tuition for medicine until the full effects of deregulation can be assessed.
Brill said he will show students entering into Western's medical program are from a higher socio-economic background.
Dental students will also be providing the administration with data outlining how much the program is costing them, said Manisha Jindal, Western's dental student society president. Currently dental students are paying between $100,000 and $150,000 for a four-year degree.
"We are looking for solutions today, not two or three years down the line for students currently enrolled in the program."
Stacey Sheehy, president of the HBA association, said one of the questions she wants to ask is how the administration plan to attract students to the HBA program, which is twice as expensive as some other Ontario universities.
Ian Armour, president of the University Students' Council, said he will also attend today's meeting to support the student. "Our job is to be a support group and provide facts."