By Sean Tepper
Associate News Editor
In the anticipation of an upcoming 3 to 5 per cent budget cut, Ryerson President Sheldon Levy held a community town hall meeting Wednesday afternoon to discuss the current state of Ryerson’s finances to dozens of concerned students and faculty members.
“There has been a fight of all fights on this in the university sector this year and honestly, I don’t know how this is going to come down. My guess is that it will be 3 or 5 [per cent], but we’re waiting,” he said.
The exact number of the budget cut will only be announced alongside the provincial budget, which is to be released in late March.
Levy said that the proposed 5 per cent increase in student tuition fees would account for 2 per cent of the 5 per cent budget cut and it would be up to the university to allocate their funds to fill the other 3 per cent.
“We need the money. I’m not giving any economics or anything but [the fact that] we need the money,” he said. “As we put the budget together, we have five priorities that we always had which are all based around faculty, students, research and the reputation of the university.”
Additionally, Levy said that the university will push the creation of new programs, as this may be the last year that the government would fund them.
“We think that this is the last year we’ll get full funding for growth. If we don’t get it this year the worry is that we won’t do it for many year,” he said. “So if you see us pushing a bit … it is pushing because we see the economic advantage of getting them now, not later. We are trying to get the money in areas where growth makes sense.”