Camosun College facing $6.7M deficit due to COVID-19 pandemic
Camosun College's Interurban campus is pictured: (CTV News)
VICTORIA -- Camosun College is predicting a multimillion-dollar deficit due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Greater Victoria college is projecting a deficit of roughly $6.7 million for the upcoming fiscal year.
In June, Camosun temporarily suspended its continuing education program due to a decrease in revenue amid the pandemic.
Most of the continuing education courses did not include transferrable academic credits, such as prenatal classes, creative writing programs or traffic control courses. However, some continuing education programs, such as applied project management and leadership development, did have transferrable academic credits.
When the programs were suspended in the summer, all ongoing courses were allowed to finish. Similar temporary suspensions have occurred in the past, according to the post-secondary institution.
Camosun plans to restart continuing education programs “once the college has financially recovered from the current crisis.” However, no timeline for when that may be is available yet.
Camosun adds that no provincial funding has been made available for continuing education courses that are fully reliant on tuition to cover costs.
Meanwhile, international student enrolment has declined due to the pandemic.
For the 2020 winter semester, 1,585 international students were enrolled at Camosun. For the 2021 winter semester, that number dropped to 1,177 students.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, international student tuition made up roughly 17 per cent of the college’s total revenue, or approximately $26 million.
On Monday, Camosun started its winter 2021 semester.
“Our campus and classrooms continue to look different due to COVID-19 safety measures, with some ongoing opportunities for some face-to-face learning and working,” said the college in a statement Tuesday.
“The commitment, passion and resiliency of our faculty and staff has ensured we continue to deliver the best possible education and services to all of our students.”
Currently, roughly one third of courses offered at Camosun feature face-to-face learning “given our emphasis on applied learning,” says the college.