New statistics show the realities of student life in Quebec

Students are paying for a significant portion of their education

There have been some really interesting statistics on students and universities coming out of Quebec over the past few days.

On Thursday, the province’s largest student lobby group released the results of a major study (in French) on student finances. On Monday, the Conference of Rectors and Principals of Quebec Universities posted a lot of statistics, on things like enrolment and finances at every university in the province, on their website.

The Fédération étudiante universitaire du Québec study is definitely more interesting, some of the numbers posted by the Conference were hard to find but they were all available.

The scope of the FEUQ study is notable. Eight per cent of students in the province participated and it’s got some bonafides. It was sponsored by the Millenium Scholarship Foundation and Desjardins Foundation, the charitable arm of Quebec’s largest chain of credit unions. It was also carried out by a third-party market research company.

The main take-away is the importance of working, the average full-time student works 18 hours a week and that accounts, on average, for over 50 per cent of their finances. For part time students work accounts for over 80 per cent of their finances.

Parents also account for a large portion of student financing, especially for full-time students, more than any other source except for work.

The other thing that really struck me is that over 20 per cent of part-time students have children of their own and most of them say they’re struggling to maintain a balance between their family and their studies.