CANADA: Universities eye cuts in wake of crisis

Canadian universities could be forced to cut student aid, scholarships and funding for various programmes as early as next spring because of multimillion-dollar losses in their investment holdings, reports the Globe and Mail. The recent freefall of financial markets, coupled with a wait-and-see attitude of donors, has campus leaders across the country preparing for the worst and hoping for a quick recovery.

Some, such as the University of Waterloo, have already taken action, freezing most hiring for the next six months. Others, including the University of Victoria, have issued notices saying they may have to cut distributions from their endowment funds, which pay for scholarships and research chairs.

"We are down big time in terms of the market value of our endowment fund," said David Mitchell, vice-principal of advancement at Queen's University in Kingston. At the end of September, before the worst of the market woes, Queen's had lost more than $100-million in its endowment, which had fallen to $550.6-million from $658.2-million.
Full report on the Globe and Mail site