As the seasonal cycle of gift shopping begins, international students might be in for a present that they want the least. Thursday, December 1, 2022, word of the tragedy taking place at Emily Carr University of Art + Design spread around British Columbia like wildfire; a 30% increase in tuition for incoming students seems to be the end of the very Canadian dream most international students walk into the country with.

#Fairness For International Students is crucial now more than ever; however, how long would it take for the decision makers to understand?

Students of Emily Carr University standing up against the predatory tuition hike

 A statement from an international student highlighted by CBC in their news report hit too close to heart for many others, “Treating international students, post-secondary students, as cash cows essentially is not the way,” according to Kashish Hukku Jani. The scene is shifting both inside and outside Emily Carr, as students come together to voice the frustration and financial exploitation experienced by them over the years.

While some are devasted about that much alone, others are questioning why this is happening after international students were allowed to work more than 20 hours per week.

“The biggest concern for us is how we aren’t able to focus much on our studies because we are worrying so much about other things, like how much money we need for groceries, how much we need for rent”

Are international students the designated cash cows for educational institutions in British Columbia or Canada as a whole? Is there more to what is happening in Emily Carr?

Issues have already been voiced regarding the absence of a cap on international students’ tuition fees; colleges, universities, and other educational institutions have the freedom to increase the tuition of international students by any margin, whether it be 5% or 50% at any given point in time. This is not the case for domestic students, as they have a cap of 2% on their tuition increases annually.

Recently, there have been rumors about potential amendments being discussed to correct this issue specific to international students. Based on educated assumptions, there might be a correlation between this possible development and what happened at Emily Carr, deciding to raise the tuition by a hefty margin before they are no longer able to do it legally. The question, now, is if this is the destiny of other educational institutions around British Columbia?