News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

January 7, 2016


Strategic Investments in Post-secondary Education Will Continue to Create Good Jobs, Promote Academic Excellence Across Manitoba: Premier Selinger

The Manitoba government is increasing funding to colleges and universities by four per cent to $710.8 million, continuing to set the standard for investments in post-secondary education and investing in the future of the province, Premier Greg Selinger announced today.

“We know that our colleges and universities provide opportunities for youth and help drive our economy,” said Premier Selinger.  “Today, we’re showing our commitment to support students and post-secondary education in our province because we know that more people with access to a better education will translate into a well-trained workforce that’s ready for the jobs of tomorrow.”

The premier added the funding announced today builds on the commitment to increase funding for universities by 2.5 per cent and a two per cent increase for colleges, while also providing additional funding for innovative programs, Indigenous education and new supports for students.  The province has more than doubled funding to universities and colleges since 1999, increasing supports by $384.7 million, or 126.5 per cent.  The province has added $27.9 million to post-secondary funding, which now totals an annual investment of $710.8 million.

“Today’s investment is great news for post-secondary institutions in Manitoba and particularly the University of Manitoba,” said David Barnard, president and vice-chancellor.  “I am delighted Premier Selinger continues to share our vision for and commitment to Indigenous education and support for the next generation of Indigenous leaders in our province.”

“This is a meaningful investment in the future of Manitoba because it’s a promise to go beyond our present trajectory, ensuring that our next generation is equipped to realize their potential,” said Dr. Annette Trimbee, president and vice-chancellor, University of Winnipeg.  “We believe in the power of education to transform and are committed to growing leaders who will continue to impact our society in many important ways.”

The premier noted that additional funding will be allocated for targeted supports across the
post-secondary system to support training for students in in-demand fields as well as allow for a more accessible and seamless post-secondary system including:

  • $844,000 to support a new joint bachelor of midwifery program at University College of the North and the University of Manitoba;
  • $208,000 to support an internationally educated engineers qualification;
  • $450,000 for Assiniboine Community College’s internationally educated licensed professional nurse program;
  • $83,000 to expand seats in Red River College’s primary care paramedic program;
  • $440,000 to support the Manitoba Transfer Credit Portal, allowing students to seamlessly transfer credits between accredited institutions; and
  • $276,000 to increase access supports for Indigenous, newcomer and marginalized students, bringing total support to $11.3 million.

“Having predictable funding is critical to the ability of colleges to offer stable programs linked to Manitoba’s labour market and economic priorities,” said Mark Frison, president, Assiniboine Community College.  “We are pleased the Province of Manitoba was able to respond to the sector’s request to advance the timetable for funding decisions similar to our kindergarten to Grade 12 colleagues.”

The premier also announced new funding to support Indigenous culture and programming at universities and colleges, as part of the province’s response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission including:

  • $1 million in capital support for the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba,
  • $350,000 to provide each college and university with funding to support Indigenous culture on campus,
  • $610,000 for the new masters of social work in Indigenous knowledge at the University of Manitoba, and $150,000 to support a Métis studies program at Brandon University.

“It was made clear by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommendations that action must be taken to address the legacy of colonization for Indigenous peoples,” said Michael Barkman, chairperson, Canadian Federation of Students – Manitoba.  “Today’s announcement helps ensure Indigenous education is made a priority for the betterment of all Manitobans.”

The announcement also included new investments for teaching excellence and funding supports for students including: 

  • $3 million to support graduate students at the University of Manitoba,
  • $80,000 to found the Premier’s Award and Chair in Post-Secondary Teaching Excellence and Innovation, and
  • $10,000 to support the Len Evans Memorial Scholarships at Brandon University. 

The province will also give universities enhanced flexibility to match funding support for more students through both the $2.25-million Manitoba Graduate Scholarship and the $4.5-million Manitoba Scholarship and Bursary Initiative, as well as provide supports to the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships program, the premier added.                                                                  

“We know that hardworking, middle-class families value education and want to be sure that when their children go to university and college they are getting an affordable, high-quality education,” said Education and Advanced Learning Minister James Allum.  “We are not following the path of other provinces that are cutting funding to universities and colleges, and taking opportunities away from youth.”

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