Universities could suffer a huge income deficit because of the absence of international students - Punjabi
RADIO - Red FM 106.7 The Evening Show - Calgary, 03/06/2020 - COMMENTARY, Punjabi
Summary Translation: Monica Oberoi - RBC has published a report regarding international students and people who complain about international students should listen to this report carefully. RBC has reported that due to the COVID-19 pandemic there is a lot of strain on Canada's international student sector. There is a drop of 45% in the number of international student permits issued in the month of March 2020 as compared to the number of permits issued in March 2019. What will be the immediate impact of this? The impact of this will be evident in many areas. Higher education institutes will not receive their yearly income of $6 billion. Its ripple effect will be on Canada's GDP as well. The total spending of international students in Canada is $22 billion. Canada's economy benefits from international students even after they finish their degree - 11,000 new permanent residents every year were former students. Immigration is at a standstill and the labour force without immigration is dropping. It will be very difficult for Canada to sustain its economy without introducing new workers.
Image: Producer and host Monica Oberoi, Red FM 106.7 Facebook page
WEB - Dushi.ca - Markham, 30/05/2020 - NEWS, Chinese
Image Source: Dushi.ca
Summary Translation: Like other international students, Shahbuddin faces uncertainty as universities switch to online classes. She also has financial concerns, worries about a work permit and has fears about her health. “It’s been almost two months now and I’ve been thinking about it every day and still cannot make a decision,” she said in a phone interview. Matthew Ramsey, a spokesman at the University of British Columbia, said it will primarily be offering online classes in the fall so students can participate from around the world. The university will not know enrolment numbers until September because most students who are offered and accept admission sometimes opt out for a variety of reasons, he said. Ijaz Ashraf is from Pakistan and has been accepted at Concordia University to do a master’s degree in industrial engineering. He said he will likely defer enrolment because he’s not satisfied with online classes and wants to experience campus life. David Robinson, executive director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, said his group has been working with the Canadian Federation of Students. Both groups have suggested tuition waivers or cuts funded through the government. He said there’s an added concern for students in some countries where the course material may be censored.
RADIO - Red FM 88.9 Good Morning Toronto - Brampton, 28/05/2020 - PHONE IN, Punjabi
Summary Description: Dalhousie University will be moving most of its fall courses online as physical distancing restrictions remain in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the international students' program is facing challenges due to a drop in applications. University President Deep Saini spoke with Red FM radio host on this situation. Saini said that the Halifax university closed its campus in March and moved its courses online until its fall semester amid rising COVID-19 concerns. However, Saini said that the university is considering resume in-person classes for some programs requiring experiential learning, like medicine, dentistry, physiotherapy and agriculture, but in a safe environment that abides by Nova Scotia's public health protocols. Saini further said that the university has received more applications than the past year from both domestic and international students and the offers are also being accepted. However, the students are waiting for the travel restrictions to be lifted. He also said that a large number of students come from India and China, but they are unable to travel at this time. According to Saini, the September enrollment is expected to drop, but how much will be clear in June, when the registrations start. Saini said the university is investing more than $1 million on "technology development, additional online instruction training and increased online supports for students" to make the transition easier for students and faculty. Saini also gave an update on the COVID -19 vaccine project at Dalhousie University.
By Muskan Sandhu
Image Source: http://www.mingshengbao.com/
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest”
It appears that Canada has shifted the burden of investing in knowledge, specifically in higher education, to international students. The first-world system of generating wealth by outsourcing its needs to other countries has been replicated in the Canadian education system as well. Except, in this case, wealth isn’t produced by extracting cheap labour but instead through an inverted model of providing exorbitant educational services to international students. With COVID-19 halting various forms of cross-border exchange, what exactly is at stake for the Canadian economy and education if international student enrollment falls sharply?
To put the potential outcome in perspective, various ethnic media outlets have taken to pointing out how international students contribute to Canada’s economy. Fairchild TV British Columbia, a Cantonese newscast from Vancouver, reported that according to government sources international students contributed an estimated $21.6 billion to Canada's GDP in 2018. In a Korean newspaper from Toronto, The Korea Times Daily, Universities Canada President Paul Davidson was quoted as saying that international students represent 50%, on average, of the total tuition revenue.
Furthermore, Vansky, a Chinese web daily, pointed out that: “The contribution of these international students to the Canadian economy is not only tuition, but also rent, groceries, transportation, entertainment, and more. International students provided Canada with nearly 170,000 jobs...For the Canadian government, these people are a good source of high-consumption, are highly-skilled immigrants, and can make a beneficial contribution to the economy.”
Commenting on the significance of these figures, CFC News, a Chinese newspaper from Ottawa wrote: “When the times are good, Chinese international students are considered "gold mines" for Canadian universities, but when disaster strikes, this dependency may result in the collapse of the financial systems of these universities.” Evidently, this observation is applicable in the case of not just Chinese but all international students.
A decrease in enrolment seems to be taking effect already. Vansky reported that compared to the first quarter of the year 2019, the first quarter this year has seen a decline in the number of Chinese students who received student visas by 51%. The shift to online classes is also not proving to be helpful. In an interview on OMNI News: Punjabi Edition, a news channel aired from Toronto, representatives of the organization Team We Care said that they have launched a petition for a tuition fee refund from UBC because the international student fees are very high and the students feel that they are not receiving its full value anymore. Team We Care is a group dedicated to helping international students navigate their journey in Canada - the group currently has 6,000 members.
Similarly, CFC News opined: “International students don't want to be paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to be sitting at home looking at their professor on a computer screen. In addition, as racism increases, more and more Chinese international students and parents are starting to consider suspending their schooling, or even preparing to find alternative paths instead of going overseas.”
All hope, however, does not seem to be lost for universities. The Toronto Spanish newspaper El Centro News referred to the IDP Connect poll to state that most aspiring international students say the COVID-19 pandemic is not stopping them from pursuing post-secondary education abroad. Regardless, uncertainty remains the mantra of the pandemic for everything, including higher education.
WEB - Dushi.ca - Markham, 24/05/2020 - NEWS, Chinese
Image Source: Dushi.ca
Summary Translation: With women bearing the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic, federal officials are trying to figure out how recovery efforts can help get women back to work, earning more money and securing more stable jobs. Jennifer Robson, a social policy expert from Carleton University, says temporary layoffs and reduced hours could quickly turn into permanent layoffs if businesses are ready to reopen but parents who don't have child care can't go back. Social Development Minister Ahmed Hussen has been leading an internal effort to determine how federal spending on child care can be better targeted. Experts and stakeholders have told him Ottawa can help provinces and territories address the patchwork of child-care options across the country.
TV - PTC North America - Toronto, 22/05/2020 - NEWS, Punjabi
Image Source: PTC North America Face Book
Summary Translation: The Ontario government has announced that it is moving forward with research projects to fight COVID-19, including clinical trials investigating vaccines and treatments. Ontario Premier Doug Ford said, "We've received proposals from every corner of this province and today I am proud to announce that we are moving forward with 15 of the most promising proposals as part of the first phase." Ford provided examples of some of the “ground-breaking” research, which includes vaccine development at the University of Guelph and a proposal by St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton on a new rapid testing method that would enable 6,000 tests per lab a day. He also mentioned a study out of McMaster University that looks at recovered COVID-19 patients and investigates if antibodies remain and continue to fight the virus, as well as a food security project by Western University to study how food retail businesses are impacted by adapting to COVID-19.
WEB - Goniec - Toronto, 24/05/2020 - NEWS, Polish
Image Source: Goniec website
Translation Summary: Katarzyna Nowosielska - As businesses have suffered a lot in recent months, Canadians should prepare for the possibility of having a new rate added to their bill: a COVID-19 supplement. Jonathan Alward of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) says that his group members will have to be passing on some of the additional costs (cost of personal protective equipment, sanitizer products, the extra staff hours it takes to make sure businesses are following all the protocols) to consumers. Alward emphasizes that businesses do not want to transfer costs to customers, but at this point they often find themselves in such a desperate situation that they have no other choice. University of Toronto marketing expert David Soberman emphasizes the importance of transparency – the customer must know upfront that COVID-19 fees will be applied to the bill, and they should be aware of what the actual amount will be before deciding on the service or purchase.
WEB - Torontovka.com - Toronto, 19/05/2020 - NEWS, 1 page web, Russian
Image Source: Torontovka.com
Summary Translation: no byline - LuxMea, a multidisciplinary design studio with offices in Toronto and Boston, is working with Health Canada and testing their products at the University of Toronto so they can distribute them to frontline healthcare workers. LuxMea has an idea for a face mask that goes beyond the usual cotton or polyester varieties. They have raised over $100,000 to begin the mass production of masks made by 3D printers. What sets these masks apart is that they will be made using AI (artificial intelligence) technology so that they are individually tailored to each wearer. Each mask will be lightweight, flexible and glasses-friendly to prevent fog — a common issue with many cotton masks. They will also come with replaceable filters, making them reusable, durable and washable. The way personalization will work is that measurements for each individual customer will be taken online to generate the desired fit. The masks with then be 3D-printed by LuxMea's partner Shapeways, the largest 3D printing manufacturer in the world, and delivered directly to the customer's home.
Industry insiders believe Canadian colleges and universities face budget shortfalls next semester - Chinese
WEB - Chinese Readers - Vancouver, 08/05/2020 - COMMENTARY, Chinese
Image Source: http://www.creaders.net/
Summary Description: RCI - The financial issue is more serious for colleges and universities that recruit more international students, and as a result, colleges and universities may have to reduce staffing. Universities Canada president Paul Davidson pointed out that foreign students not only pay tuition fees, but they also drive the Canadian economy through rent, transportation, etc. Davidson said that all Canadian universities want to get back to normal as soon as possible, but too many factors are out of their control. The industry is putting pressure on the federal and provincial governments and asking the two levels of government to help them get through the difficulties arising from the novel coronavirus outbreak. One internet user, aoyun2012niand, suggested layoffs. This internet user says the management of American and Canadian universities is too chaotic; there are more hands than needed; tuition fees increase every year.
RADIO - CIAO 530 AM - Toronto, 13/05/2020 - TALK SHOW, Punjabi
Summary Translation: Host Gurdeep Sekhon talked about the impact of COVID-19 on immigration in Canada. Current affairs expert Amrit Grewal said that Australia’s policy to reduce visa issuance is benefitting Canada. Canada had planned to bring more than one million new immigrants to Canada in the next three years, which was good news. At the moment, we can question the need for new immigrants when the unemployment rate is high in Canada. However, the current situation is temporary. The economic situation will improve and immigration will be back on track. There are many jobs that depend on immigrants. International students play a significant role in contributing to the Canadian job market and economy.