SGPS COVID-19 Information Hub
If you have incurred an unexpected or sudden emergency expense due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, you are likely eligible for an emergency bursary. Please consult the Bursary Guide attached here, for the documentation required to process your application.
The University acknowledges the COVID-19 situation is creating financial uncertainty, and having an impact for some students in the immediate future. The Student Awards Office will provide some supplemental assistance to help with immediate / short term needs for those that are encountering extenuating and unplanned challenges due to this global crisis.
The novel coronavirus and ensuing global health pandemic have created an unprecedented social and economic crisis. Although Queen’s is beginning to reopen, many of the services students have come to rely on are not, or they are opening at a reduced capacity. While referenda processes ensure that students vote on many of these mandatory fees, services are not running as expected.
In March, PSAC and the SPGS called for a suspension or at least a reduction in summer tuition due to students no longer having access to physical university services, including office space, facilities, classrooms, and the physical library. Many students also face additional economic hardship due to summer job loss and considerable future employment uncertainty. These requests for a suspension or reduction were met with a stern “no.” As TAs and RAs, graduate students support the larger undergraduate student body while precariously employed. These struggles have been compounded even further during the current crisis and social isolation.
Throughout the summer, the SGPS called for a refund on the Athletics and Recreation Centre fee. Despite the ARC being closed for 45% of the 2019-2020 school year, graduate and professional students were only offered a 17% refund. This means that 28% of the 2019-2020 ARC student fee was withheld due to “summer outside field access,” something available to all Kingston residents whether or not they have paid the ARC fee.
Due to this disproportionally small refund, students are worried that refunds will not be issued fairly and that many fee collecting bodies will scramble to justify keeping the full student fee. We request that fees be adjusted based on the services that will be offered, not the services wished to be provided. We request that the ARC provide refunds to the students who request it, as Queen’s has encouraged students not to return to campus this fall, and many students will be unable to do so due to health, travel, and financial restrictions.
We will also be in contact with the Queen’s University Alumni Association and other Alumni bodies, calling on them to withhold their donations to the ARC and to donate to COVID relief causes. We request that Queen’s reassess the fee slate based on what is fair for students and increase transparency around the spending of these mandatory fees.
The SGPS has heard student voices related to getting the much-needed relief they need during this crisis.
While we continue to bring this issue forward with the administration, we have been repeatedly told that the provincial government must also play a role.
For that reason, we have created a campaign to send notice to the provincial government that tuition waivers should be granted to students for this upcoming term.
Please see the link below to access the emailer campaign that you can send to the Minister of Colleges and University and your area’s local MPP.
With the recent government announcement of the proposed Canada Emergency Student Benefit, we must continue to push forward to ensure that all graduate student voices are heard.
This webpage helps you email your Member of Parliament to let them know that Graduate Students need support.
This petition is asking the Government of Canada to provide income support to cover all students and recent graduates, regardless of prior work experience and income.
Addressed to Federal Government, Provincial Governments, Canada’s Research Funding Councils, and University senior administrators, this letter outlines three key areas for action: implementing a tuition waiver for graduate students for spring/summer tuition, granting an extension on completion time for all graduate students, and extending all of Canada’s Tri-council grants and funding for graduate students.
The SGPS Executive team are signatories on this letter.
Given the dynamic nature of the COVID-19 and the fact that information can change on an hourly basis, students should keep checking Queen’s COVID-19 Information Portal for the most up-to-date information.
Given the dynamic nature of the COVID-19 and the fact that information can change on an hourly basis, students should keep checking Queen’s School of Graduate Studies COVID-19 Information Portal for the most up-to-date information.
Given the dynamic nature of the COVID-19 and the fact that information can change on an hourly basis, students should keep checking the City of Kingston’s COVID-19 Information Portal for the most up-to-date information.