The provincial budget will enable Memorial University of Newfoundland
to continue to operate in a steady and progressive manner
in the opinion of Dr. Axel Meisen, Memorial's president.
“This budget, like the recent Speech from the Throne,
recognizes that Memorial is of strategic importance for the
province and that the university is critical to our future
social and economic development,” said Dr. Meisen. “We
welcome the ongoing support of the provincial government.”
Under the provincial budget, announced March 30 in St. John's,
Memorial will be expected to decrease expenditures in 2004-05
by $2 million.
“We will have to achieve additional efficiencies throughout
our operations in order to obtain those savings,” said
Dr. Meisen. “However, we understand that, given the
position of the government's finances, Memorial must do its
share. We will now review the budget in detail and develop
our plan of action.”
According to Dr. Meisen, the budget enables Memorial to continue
to provide a high quality university education at an affordable
“We will be able to build on our past academic successes
and continue to grow research activities and community initiatives.
There is an extra $1 million for teaching equipment and another
$3 million for deferred maintenance.”
Dr. Meisen also welcomed the announcement to conduct a “White
Paper” study of postsecondary education in the province.
“We share the government's desire to address affordability
and accessibility of postsecondary education, particularly
university education, and we look forward to providing input
into the study.”
Dr. Meisen indicated that there were a number of other initiatives
outlined in the budget where he could see Memorial having
an interest or playing a role. These included new aquaculture
initiatives, specialized tourism development, the new Rural
Secretariat, the Public Service Program Renewal, the provincial
energy plan and new cultural initiatives.
Dr. Meisen said that the university is looking forward to
working with the government in many ways on solutions to the
province's fiscal situation. “Some of the brightest
minds in the province are here at Memorial,” the president
said. “Bringing this intellectual power to bear on the
financial problem will yield new and creative solutions.”