CSA IN THE NEWS

September 10, 2020

National Observer: How student unions are helping campus life go digital

The College Student Alliance has submitted recommendations for digital learning standards to the provincial government, said Jason Baryluk, director of advocacy and member engagement. “Students are in a very precarious situation and that kind of financial insecurity reverberates through to the rest of the institution,” he said.

September 04, 2020

Standard-Freeholder: SLC student union president lobbies for more assistance to students

The president of St. Lawrence College’s Cornwall campus student union recently called on the provincial government to provide $1,000 to full-time post-secondary students and $500 for part-time students. Tori Arnett, who is also president of the College Student Alliance, said the request comes after what she said were tough times for students. “Students are struggling right now,” said Arnett. “With the pandemic, OSAP funds are being cut, it’s ridiculous. Students need help and the government needs to understand this — they need to step up.

September 01, 2020

St. Catharines Standard: College and university students want $1,000 in tuition relief to offset the impact of COVID-19

The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance, along with the Canadian Federation of Students and the College Student Alliance are asking that part-time students also receive a rebate of $500, and that federal pandemic-related emergency benefits for students not be used to calculate provincial student loan amounts.

September 18, 2018

The Dialog: No room for compromise

Post-secondary institutions enable opportunities for thought and discussion, diversifying the academic experience outside of the classroom. However, the mandated introduction of a free speech policy in Ontario’s post-secondary system omitted those directly affected by this policy—post-secondary students. Student leaders, specifically members of on-campus student associations, must be meaningfully involved throughout the policy development process and in the subsequent conversations regarding recommendations to improve the policies.

June 04, 2018

CTV Toronto: ‘We are not apathetic’: 3.5 million voters in the Ontario election are under 25

According to the most recent census, there are over 3.5 million Ontario residents – and potential voters --between the ages of 18 and 25. This age group, once called apathetic, is now a driving force in politics. As seen in the 2015 federal elections, where 57.1 per cent of youth showed up to the polls, young people can make or break a campaign. This surge in political participation was an 18.3 percentage point increase from the 2011 federal elections.

April 13, 2018

The Dialog: Budget doesn’t improve on OSAP: student group

Budget 2018, does have language to reduce the contributions that spouses and parents of students are expected to make towards tuition. While not yet clear on details, the government said the change will allow for students from middle‐income families to more easily qualify for OSAP grants and loans. Abdullah Mushtaq, director of advocacy for the College Student Alliance (CSA), said that what was announced for OSAP in the 2018 budget, “is basically what was already said in 2016 and 2017” and that the new piece is how parental and spousal income is going to be less of a factor.

April 06, 2018

Ontario Newsroom: Ontario Supporting Success of College Students, Faculty and Staff

The College Task Force will develop a forward-looking plan that supports the delivery of high-quality career-focused postsecondary education and training through Ontario's publicly assisted colleges. College Student Alliance has two representatives on the Task Force: Abdullah Mushtaq and Aimee Calma.

March 21, 2018

The Gazette: Ontario government to invest $2.1 billion in mental health

According to Tulk, OUSA partnered with the College Student Alliance, Colleges Ontario and Council of Ontario Universities to release a joint publication outlining mental health issues and recommendations. Published last November, Tulk said a number of the recommendations were implemented in the Ontario government’s mental health investment plans. For example, Ontario will be looking into mental health transition programming for high school students going on to post-secondary education. Further, the government will ensure that students continue to have support available in university.

March 19, 2018

The Dialog: Help wanted: find your summer job

For students, finding that particular job and then actually getting it are two different challenges. Networking helps in both aspects. Some reports estimate anywhere between 60 and 80 per cent of all summer jobs are on the hidden market, meaning they’re never advertised. Turning to those around you, whether it’s friends or even past co-workers, is always a solid plan. “Keeping those connections warm, reaching out if you know someone who worked for the field that you might like, just to reach out and say “Hi” and see what’s going on,” said Aimee Calma, president of the College Student Alliance. If reaching out feels a little awkward, Calma said it’s important to reframe how you see you networking.

March 07, 2018

The Dialog: What’s in the federal budget for students?

The federal budget, which was released on Feb. 27, offers several new funding opportunities for post-secondary students, as well as measures to address gender-based violence on campus. 

January 23, 2018

CBC News: Confederation College celebrates $59K contribution to United Way

"At Confederation College it's clear we have big hearts and believe in building a positive community culture," said Jodi Alfonso, President of the Student Union. She also stated that this year's partnership between the student union and Confederation College has earned them provincial recognition from the College Student Alliance (CSA) as they were given the Landmark Award.

December 12, 2017

The Globe and Mail: Ten per cent of Ontario college students withdraw from semester following strike

"The withdraw numbers released today are proof this option was necessary for thousands of students. Students didn't sign up for an extended semester, or condensed courses," said Emmaline Scharbach, the communications manager for the College Student Alliance.

December 12, 2017

Toronto Star: Ten per cent of college students drop out after teachers’ strike

Ten per cent of full-time college students — or about 25,700 — have dropped out rather than return to class following a lengthy strike by their teachers. And even though “the vast majority … chose to stay and finish the semester,” post-secondary Minister Deb Matthews said for those “who did decide to withdraw, we hope you return to college.

November 29, 2017

The Cord: Student groups create collaborative report to enhance student mental health

A collaborative report, In It Together: Taking Action on Student Mental Health, was recently released as a call to the Province for greater action regarding the challenges and difficulties pertaining to mental health which continues to increase among students in Ontario.

November 28, 2017

The Globe and Mail: Ontario college strike could cost some students places in programs

College students could lose their entire academic year and not get back into the programs in which they are currently enrolled if they drop courses as a result of the five-week strike in Ontario this fall, students across the province are being told by their colleges.

November 24, 2017

Toronto Star: College students missing crucial entrance exams, apprenticeships dates because of strike, critics say

From career entrance exams to required hands-on training, Ontario college students are left struggling to catch up after a five-week strike by faculty that has forced semesters to be extended to make up for lost time.

November 23, 2017

City News: Ottawa offers options to international students after college strike

Ontario’s college students may be back in the classrooms after a record breaking five-week strike but, for some, there’s still some uncertainty over their future. An international student attending Humber College told CityNews the school’s latest email was putting her in a difficult position. Part of that email she shared, read “If you withdraw, we recommend that you leave Canada.”

November 22, 2017

The Dialog: Ontario post-secondary students need free mental health care: report

A new report is pushing the Ontario government to provide free mental health care for post-secondary students.

The In It Together report which was supported by the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA), Colleges Ontario, Council of Ontario Universities, and the College Student Alliance (CSA) makes 26 recommendations including that the province formally recognize post-secondary students as a priority group, separate from children, youth and adults.“We need to have the government recognize post-secondary students as their own population,” said Ariana Chasse, vice-president of the CSA.

November 21, 2017

Breakfast Television: College students are going back to school today

Dir. of Advocacy for the College Student Alliance, Abdullah Mushtaq has all the details about the end of the strike. Students have two weeks to decide if they to cancel their semester and get a refund.

November 20, 2017

CP24: Students who withdraw from college due to strike will get full tuition refund: province

The province has announced that full-time Ontario college students who decide to withdraw from school as a result of the five-week faculty strike will be given a full tuition refund. The announcement was made by the Ontario government on Monday morning.

November 20, 2017

CBC News: Conestoga College students to be back in class Tuesday morning

Conestoga College students will be back in the classroom Tuesday morning after the provincial government passed back-to-work legislation Sunday to end a five-week faculty strike. The government introduced the bill Friday after faculty rejected the employer's last offer by 86 per cent. 

November 20, 2017

The Globe and Mail: Back-to-work bill passes, sending Ontario college faculty back to class Tuesday

College students in Ontario will head back to class on Tuesday after the provincial government passed back-to-work legislation ending a five-week-long strike by professors. The law, which came into force on Sunday after rare weekend sittings of the legislature, marks the first time in the 50-year-history of the province's colleges that striking faculty have been forced back to work. The bill passed third reading in a 39-18 vote, supported by the Liberals and Tories and opposed by the New Democrats.

November 19, 2017

Macleans: Bill to end five-week ontario college strike passes

Ontario legislated college faculty back to work on Sunday, ending a five-week strike and paving the way for students to return to class on Tuesday. Colleges are extending their semesters so students don’t lose their terms, but trying to condense five missed weeks into roughly two extra ones will be very stressful, student advocates say.

“It’s going to be a very busy rest of the semester for students,” said Joel Willett, president of the College Student Alliance. “They have indicated to us that they are very frustrated.”

November 19, 2017

Toronto Star: College students back in class Tuesday after MPPs order end strike

After three days of delays, Liberal government and Progressive Conservative MPPs joined forces Sunday to order 12,000 striking college teachers — and their students — back to class over NDP objections. Faculty report for work Monday and 500,000 students follow Tuesday to jump-start a semester stalled five weeks ago by what became the longest college strike in Ontario history.

November 19, 2017

CTV News: Back-to-work legislation ends five-week Ontario college strike

Ontario legislated college faculty back to work on Sunday, ending a five-week strike and paving the way for students to return to class on Tuesday. Colleges are extending their semesters so students don't lose their terms, but trying to condense five missed weeks into roughly two extra ones will be very stressful, student advocates say.

"It's going to be a very busy rest of the semester for students," said Joel Willett, president of the College Student Alliance. "They have indicated to us that they are very frustrated."

November 19, 2017

The Dialog: College faculty strike ends as back to work legislation passes

Legislation to force Ontario college faculty back into their classrooms passed today, with a vote of 39-18, ending the strike that began on Oct. 16. The Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology Labour Dispute Resolution Act was introduced by the government on Nov. 16 after talks between the bargaining teams of the faculty and colleges did not produce a deal. The legislation prohibits a continuation of the strike or an employer lockout while the two sides go through binding arbitration.

November 17, 2017

Renfrew Today: College Student Alliance Weighs In on Strike After NDP Blocks Back To Work Legislation

College students won’t be back in classrooms as soon as they may have hoped. After the College Employer Council imposed a forced vote on the latest contract offer, 86 per cent of voters rejected the contract, and 95 per cent of those registered, came out to cast a ballot. President of the College Student Alliance, Joel Willett, says stories keep piling in about students who won’t be returning after the break, or students facing roadblocks due to the strike.

November 16, 2017

CTV Your Morning: Students frustrated over Ontario college strike

The president of a student-led advocacy group, College Student Alliance, tells us why the strike is striking a nerve with students.

November 14, 2017

CP24: Striking Ontario college teachers begin voting on contract offer today

Striking Ontario college teachers will begin voting today on a contract offer that, if accepted, could send about 500,000 students back to the classroom as early as next Tuesday.

November 11, 2017

Sudbury Star: Colleges ordered to set fund for students

Matthews said she has met with student leaders from the College Student Alliance for advice. "I'm looking for the best ideas about how to make sure this reinvestment directly benefits students who have faced hardship."

November 10, 2017

The Dialog: Government orders colleges to create hardship fund for students

This announcement comes a day after a meeting with the College Student Alliance (CSA), who represents approximately 97,000 college students in Ontario at 13 different student associations. “We understand that this isn’t going to be a solution that will fix all the problems that this strike has caused and we are still encouraging the college employer council and OPSEU to get back to the table, agree to binding arbitration, and get a deal done this weekend,” said CSA.

November 10, 2017

CP24: Fund to be set up for students facing ‘financial hardship’ during college strike

On Thursday, president of the College Student Alliance Joel Willet told CP24 that students are becoming increasingly anxious about how they will complete this semester. “Everybody did say we are expecting to be out three weeks roughly and then we should expect a settlement, but as this continues to drag on with only really one major issue on the table, it’s become just overwhelming for students,” Willet said.

November 10, 2017

Ottawa Citizen: Money that colleges save during the faculty strike will go to students hurt by dispute, says Ontario minister

Ontario colleges will have to put all the money they are saving during the faculty strike into a fund to help students who are being hurt by it, says Deb Matthews, the minister for Advanced Education and Skills Development.

November 10, 2017

Nugget.ca: 'Students have been in the middle of this strike for too long and it's just not fair'

Ontario colleges are being required to establish a dedicated fund with all savings from the strike to support students who have experienced financial hardships as a result of the job action, Deb Matthews, minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development, announced today.

November 09, 2017

CP24 Breakfast: Student strike causing 'anxiety,' students say

Centennial College Student Association Inc. Board member Lovey and CSA President Joel Willett speak with CP24 Breakfast about how the ongoing faculty strike is negatively impacting students in Ontario.

November 01, 2017

National Post: Talks to resume Thursday in Ontario college strike, minister says: 'Students should be back in the classroom'

Several hundred students gathered at the Ontario legislature Wednesday to urge the parties to get back to the table. But Joel Willett, president of the College Student Alliance, which organized the demonstration, said their message shifted when they discovered talks will resume.

 

“Now the pressure is on to get a deal done before the middle of next week,” he said. “If they don’t have a deal in place by the middle of next week then we would … demand that an arbitrator be brought in to make a deal happen.”

November 01, 2017

CP24: Colleges, faculty resume bargaining amid strike

Watch as CSA's Director of Advocacy, Abdullah Mushtaq, speak with CP24 Live at Noon about CSA's #StudentsFirst Rally.

November 01, 2017

Breakfast Television Toronto: Student rally planned at Queen’s Park today

Abdullah Mushtaq, director of advocacy for the College Student Alliance, joins Melanie to talk about the student rally planned today where students will show their concerns about the current college strike.

October 30, 2017

MSN: Students worry as Ontario college strike hits third week

College students are now worried about the possibility of losing their semester as a strike by their teachers enters its third week. With the job action dragging on, they are also worried that in order to save the school year, it could instead be extended — adding to their expenses and interfering with job plans.

October 30, 2017

Inside Toronto: Striking Centennial College staff say full-time status a key issue

Saying students “are feeling increasingly helpless and frustrated,” the College Student Alliance plans a rally at Queen’s Park, on Wednesday, Nov. 1 to demand both sides make a deal “immediately.”

October 30, 2017

Bayshore Broadcasting: College faculty strike enters week three

In a written statement,  the president of the College Student Alliance says though a college semester has never been lost because of a faculty strike,  students are increasingly concerned about this becoming a reality.

October 30, 2017

610 CKTB: College students plan rally as faculty strike drags on

As the college teacher's strike enters week three with no end in sight, a group representing students will rally this week at Queen's Park. The College Student Alliance have a rally planned for Wednesday afternoon outside the legislature to put pressure on the province to kickstart contract talks.

October 29, 2017

Toronto Star: Students worry as Ontario college strike hits third week

College students are now worried about the possibility of losing their semester as a strike by their teachers enters its third week. With the job action dragging on, they are also worried that in order to save the school year, it could instead be extended — adding to their expenses and interfering with job plans. A protest and rally are planned for Wednesday at Queen’s Park.

October 26, 2017

The Record: College faculty strike barrels toward third week

The College Student Alliance, which represents student unions at 16 colleges, can see that too. It's planning a rally at Queen's Park next Wednesday at 1 p.m. Conestoga Students Inc. is posting sign-up lists for the rally and will provide buses to take frustrated students into Toronto to take part. Conestoga has 14,000 full-time students and 32,000 in continuing education. There could be a lot of interest in attending the rally.

October 26, 2017

Inside Toronto: Striking Centennial College staff say full-time status a key issue

To Ontario college students, the strike by unionized faculty threatens their immediate future. To many college faculty, life is a hamster wheel of multiple contracts, as they pursue full-time status offered to them less and less.“Even 10 years ago, it was a very different story,” Ryan Mercer said on Monday, as picketers watched entrances to Centennial College’s Progress Campus in Scarborough.  

October 26, 2017

New Hamburg Independent: College faculty strike barrels toward third week

The College Student Alliance, which represents student unions at 16 colleges, can see that too. It's planning a rally at Queen's Park next Wednesday at 1 p.m. Conestoga Students Inc. is posting sign-up lists for the rally and will provide buses to take frustrated students into Toronto to take part. Conestoga has 14,000 full-time students and 32,000 in continuing education. There could be a lot of interest in attending the rally.

October 25, 2017

INQUINTE.CA: Student rally planned for Queen’s Park

Students at Conestoga College plan to rally at Queen’s Park next Wednesday. The College Student Alliance is organizing the event on Nov. 1 and is asking students from Ontario’s other colleges to join them.

October 24, 2017

570 News: Week 2 of faculty strike: Conestoga students planning rally

Students at Conestoga College plan to rally at Queen’s Park next Wednesday. The Conestoga [Students Inc. and} College Student Alliance [are] organizing the event on November 1st and are asking students from Ontario’s other colleges to join them.

October 21, 2017

Peterborough Examiner: Ontario community college teachers strike frustrates students at Fleming College in Peterborough

The College Student Alliance (CSA) has stepped in demanding both sides get back to the table. The alliance advocates on behalf on Ontario college students in partnership with student leaders. Joel Willett, president of CSA, said students want to know that conversations are happening and that the parties aren't going to just walk away if they don't like a proposal put forward.

October 17, 2017

Global News: Fleming College president says students shouldn’t be anxious about faculty strike

The lack of available counsellors is a cause for concern for the president of Fleming’s student council. “Students have now lost the opportunity to have one-on-one counselling when they need it, especially when they’re in crisis,” said Joel Willett.

October 17, 2017

The Record: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

Faculty members — including full-time professors, instructors who teach anywhere from seven to 12 hours a week, counsellors and librarians — walked off the job first thing Monday, after the bargaining team for the province’s 24 public colleges rejected the union’s final offer.

October 17, 2017

570 News: The Mike Farwell Show

Students seeking tuition rebate due to college strike - Aimee Calma, Conestoga Students Inc. President & Director for College Student Alliance speaks.

October 17, 2017

Cambridge Times: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

For students, the job action has already been “absolutely confusing … what the strike means to students varies from one campus to another and depends on the program, said Joel Willett, president of the College Student Alliance.

October 17, 2017

Our Windsor: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

Ontario colleges are bracing for a “fairly protracted strike” after 12,000 faculty hit the picket lines Monday despite last-ditch proposals that still saw the two sides far apart on key issues. 

October 17, 2017

Brampton Guardian: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

​Ontario colleges are bracing for a “fairly protracted strike” after 12,000 faculty hit the picket lines Monday despite last-ditch proposals that still saw the two sides far apart on key issues. 

October 17, 2017

UMSL Spaces: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

Ontario colleges are bracing for a “fairly protracted strike” after 12,000 faculty hit the picket lines Monday despite last-ditch proposals that still saw the two sides far apart on key issues. 

October 17, 2017

Guelph Mercury: Ontario colleges prepare for a long strike

For students, the job action has already been “absolutely confusing … what the strike means to students varies from one campus to another and depends on the program, said Joel Willett, president of the College Student Alliance. 

October 16, 2017

Northern Life: Student group frustrated by college faculty strike

A student group says it's “frustrated” by the strike by faculty members at Ontario's 24 community colleges.

The 12,000 faculty members, represented by the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU), went on strike at midnight Monday after a deal could not be reached with the College Employers Council (CEC).

October 16, 2017

Newstalk 610 CKTB: Niagara College On Strike-College Student Alliance President

Listen as Larry gets the inside on student reaction to the strike.

October 16, 2017

CP24: Students on the outside of strike, Mushtaq says

Watch as CSA's Director of Advocacy, Abdullah Mushtaq, speak with CP24 Live at Noon about the college faculty strike.

October 16, 2017

Toronto Star: Ontario colleges preparing for a long strike

At Queen’s Park, the post-secondary minister and opposition MPPs were urging the two sides to get back to the table so that about 300,000 students can get back to class.

October 16, 2017

Sault Star: College faculty take to the picket lines

In a press release the College Student Alliance said students across the province are frustrated that an agreement has not been reached between the union and College Employers Council. 

October 16, 2017

Inside Brockville: College faculty on picket line at St. Lawrence College Monday morning

In an Oct. 15 release from the College Student Alliance, president Joel Willett commented, “Lost class time, especially a lost semester, can result in delayed graduation. Whether a student is in their first semester or their last, they’re going to feel the severity of this strike.”

October 16, 2017

Blackburn News: What Happens To Students If The College Strike Drags On?

College Student Alliance President Joel Willett has no clear answers, and with no guideline to recoup the semester should the labour dispute drag on, he admits many students could be left in the lurch.

October 16, 2017

Bay Today: College students at risk in faculty strike

Members of the College Student Alliance (CSA) and students across Ontario are frustrated a collective agreement has not been reached between the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) and the College Employers Council (CEC), resulting in full-time college faculty striking as of 12:01 a.m. Monday, Oct. 16. 

October 16, 2017

The Dialog: Day one of the Ontario college faculty strike

“Lost class time, especially a lost semester, can result in delayed graduation,” said Joel Willett, the president of the CSA in a statement. “Whether a student is in their first semester or their last, they’re going to feel the severity of this strike.”

October 16, 2017

Timmins Today: College students at risk in faculty strike says College Student Alliance

Members of the College Student Alliance (CSA) and students across Ontario are frustrated a collective agreement has not been reached between the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) and the College Employers Council (CEC), resulting in full-time college faculty striking as of 12:01 a.m. Monday, Oct. 16.

October 13, 2017

The Globe and Mail: Locked in labour dispute, Ontario colleges, union risk Monday instructor strike

Hundreds of thousands of college students across Ontario could be shut out of their classrooms Monday morning if their schools and the union representing instructors do not hammer out a deal this weekend to avoid a strike.

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