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Dec 05, 2016 08:39 AM EST

Ontario University Board Slams New Fees For College Applicants

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The Ontario University board has criticized the new fees for college applicants. It has been deemed as an "undue and unfair financial hardship" on students and their families.

The Toronto Sun reported that Peel District School Board Trustee Stan Cameron, admitted that he first learned about the new $50 fee implemented by the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC) from a Bolton high school guidance counselor. He also revealed that he brought the issue to the board last week and filed a motion to send a letter to OUAC in opposition of the fee.

"Not only do I wear a school board trustee hat but I also teach in post-secondary education at Centennial College," he said. "I have seen students in my classrooms who really struggle financially so I know what that looks like - to come to post-secondary education but not have a whole lot of money."

University applicants are required to pay a base fee of $156. This lets them apply for three university programs.

Initially, students who wanted to drop one university to go to another are able to do so without financial penalty. In the 2017 academic year, though, they will be required to pay $50 every time they want to switch.

In a previous story by the Toronto Sun, it was noted that the fee was supposed to be applied to students who make more than three university choices. However, it has been revealed that students were charged every time they change their university selection.
The college application process costs $95 for five program choices. This is applied within three colleges with unlimited changes and no extra charges.

"I think there's totally that assumption that if you're applying to university, you come from a family situation that is capable of paying additional money, therefore we will charge you that," Cameron added.

OUAC Executive director David Wallace told the publication that students are urged to research their choices to avoid the additional charge.

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