Ukrainians that fled war to receive post-secondary education support in Sask.

Ukrainians that fled war to receive post-secondary education support in Sask.

Ukrainians that arrived in Saskatchewan after fleeing the war with Russia will now pay the same tuition rates as domestic students.

Saskatchewan has announced funding to ensure Ukrainian students who fled the war won’t have to pay the much higher international student fees.

Viktoriia Knyhnystska, who is graduating high school soon, said she was relieved to hear the news.

“It’s really good news for us because we came from war, not as tourists or something like that. We are very happy to hear that,” Knyhnystska said Thursday at a government news conference announcing the change.

International students pay $25,000 to $35,000 a year, compared to $7,000 to $9,000 a year for domestic students.

A man in a blue suit can be seen speaking at a podium.
Minister of Advanced Education Gordon Wyant made the announcement Thursday about funding for Ukrainians pursuing post-secondary education in Saskatchewan. (Kirk Fraser/CBC News)

Minister of Advanced Education Gordon Wyant said the higher tuition rate was a barrier for the Ukrainians who arrived in Saskatchewan.

“We certainly want people to stay and work and live and raise a family here in Saskatchewan, and secondary education is a key part of that.” Wyant said. “We also want to provide opportunities for those who want to return to Ukraine and build their country.”

He added that some students came forward at the legislature and to city mayors to express their concerns about being considered international students.

Wyant said the province is expecting to spend $400,000 to accommodate the Ukrainian students as domestic students. The money will be going to pay the differential between the domestic tuition rate and the international rate.

Wyant said the province will work with post secondary institutions to figure out how the system will work.