ROYTEC has just suffered a 75 percent drop in TT nationals enrolling to do foreign courses, executive director Wendy Augustus told reporters yesterday at a function at the Radisson, Port-of-Spain to celebrate ROYTEC’s approval by the Accreditation Council of TT (ACTT).
Recently, Education Minister Anthony Garcia said the Government Assistance with Tuition Expenses (GATE) subsidy will only apply to courses accredited by ACTT, which must be local courses, not those awarded by foreign universities.
ROYTEC offers its own local courses, plus courses awarded by Canada’s University of New Brunswick (UNB).
Augustus said, “Because we are accredited, our local programmes will continue to be funded by GATE but our international programmes are not.”
She named the non-GATE UNB courses as Bachelors in Business, Bachelors in Education and Masters in Education, plus a new Masters in Business Psychology that was never funded.
Asked if ROYTEC has received its State funding, she said it did.
She confirmed a dive in enrolment for UNB courses this year compared to last, saying, “We have had a 75 per cent drop in enrolment.” Students must now pay the full cost of the programme, Augustus said, blaming less enrollment for UNB courses to the withdrawal of GATE. ROYEC’s local courses are okay, she said.
Banks and credit unions are offering unsecured loans to UNB students, she said, and ROYTEC has a payment plan. She said it is still hard for some students, hence the fall off.
“I think they should be GATE-funded because they are strong programmes, they are robust and New Brunswick is a well-recognised institution and accredited in Canada.