To the MSVU community,

At its meeting held last night (May 2, 2024), the Mount Saint Vincent University Board of Governors approved the University’s 2024/2025 operating budget.

The budget prioritizes student-focused investments, with a small shortfall anticipated (of about $200,000) largely due to a challenging fiscal context. We will work to mitigate that anticipated shortfall through efficient resource management throughout the year, the same as the university did in 2023/2024.

Guiding principles

As in years past, this year’s budget planning process prioritized transparency and accountability, alignment with strategic priorities, long-term sustainability, and student-focused investment.


The process to develop our new budget began last year with the submission of faculty hiring requests for 2024/2025 (subsequently reviewed by the Senate Committee on Academic Policy and Planning), and it continued with the submission of budget requests by members of Management Forum. Our process in 2024 was shortened due to the labour disruption, however key milestones were met and the draft budget was presented a few times to the University Budget Advisory Committee (members include students, faculty and staff), as well as to Senate.


This was a challenging budget to develop. At the same time as we received $4 million worth of investment requests, we were faced with a number of contextual complexities, including:

  • The new one-year bilateral agreement with the Province of Nova Scotia provides for a 2% increase to the university’s operating grant conditional on providing a strategic alignment proposal to government. The agreement also requires that the University develop a plan that would, if implemented, reduce administrative expenses by 5% through shared inter-university administrative initiatives for subsequent fiscal years.
  • Rising costs: like the cost of living, the cost of operating our institution is rising and at a rate that outpaces the 2% increase in our government grant.
  • New limits on international student study permits: this year’s international student enrolment projections were established at the same number as last year as it is difficult to predict what the actual impacts of the Federal government’s unexpected policy change will be.

Investments highlights

The strategic investments in our new budget are focused on improving the student experience and are aligned with MSVU’s commitment to access and impact. These include:

  • Additional funding for the MSVU Writing Centre through which tutors help students with their written work;
  • Additional funding to enable the Mount Mentors to help students throughout the summer with the transition to MSVU, including a new position supporting graduate students;
  • A new student recruitment position in support of prospective Indigenous and African Nova Scotian students in particular;
  • Essential investment in cyber security;
  • Modest growth in the budget for the post-care tuition waiver program;
  • Pay rate increases for markers and teaching assistants; and
  • Faculty renewal: replacement of 11 full-time faculty positions and four term positions.


The university takes a fiscally prudent approach to help ensure that our tuition remains among the lowest in the Province. A decision to increase tuition is never taken lightly by the Board.

For the 2024/25 academic year, tuition will increase by 2% for domestic undergraduate and graduate students. For an undergraduate student, this amounts to an average increase of $17.85 per half unit of credit, which is typically one course.

The Province’s new bilateral agreement requires a minimum of a 9% increase in new undergraduate international student total tuition. This increase will be applied for all new international students (graduate and undergraduate). Returning international students will see a total increase of 3% for 2024/2025. Expectations are that returning students will see a higher increase in 2025/26 to bring their fees in line with new international students for the coming year.

As always, please be in touch if you have any questions.



Isabelle Nault
Vice-President, Administration
Mount Saint Vincent University