All 6 local univ raise fees this year while MOE continues to subsidize foreign students

Straits Times reported today (29 Apr) that all six local universities here will be raising their tuition fees for the new academic year, which begins in August.

Tuition fees for the new intake of Singapore citizens will go up by $50 a year – or about 0.4 per cent to 0.6 per cent – for the bulk of undergraduate programmes at NUS, NTU, SMU and SUSS. At SUTD, fees for Singapore citizens will increase by $150, or 1 per cent, a year. SIT said it will also be raising fees but will release the details later.

Those who enrol at Yale-NUS College and Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music will see a higher increase of $500.

PRs and foreign students will also have to pay $50 to $350 more a year for most undergraduate programmes. MOE said the percentage fee increases for them are similar to those for Singaporeans.

These fee increases affect only the new intake this year.

To help students needing financial aid, SMU said that its total financial aid available for this new academic year will increase by about $200,000 from $6 million to $6.2 million (i.e, 3% increase).

Free tuition grant and work pass for foreign students

Meanwhile, MOE continues to offer subsidies to foreign students in their tertiary studies in Singapore.

Not only that, they would also be automatically granted a work pass to work in Singapore upon graduation so as to “help” them serve their “bond”.

MOE website said:

The Tuition Grant Scheme was introduced by the Government to help students with the costs of tertiary education in Singapore. The Tuition Grant Scheme is currently open to students enrolled for the full-time diploma or undergraduate courses in the Institutes of Higher Learning.

Singapore Citizens will be automatically awarded a Tuition Grant without the need for application. There is no bond obligation required of Singapore Citizens. For all non-Singaporean students (including Singapore Permanent Residents), in exchange for the grant received under the Tuition Grant Scheme, they are required to apply for Tuition Grant (subject to MOE’s approval) and sign a Tuition Grant Agreement in which they will be contractually obliged to work in a Singapore entity for three (3) years upon graduation.

For example, last year, the tuition grant given by MOE to foreign students ranged from $10,560 to $68,520 per year:

For those Singaporean students who were not accepted by our local universities, some parents had no choice but to sponsor them to study overseas, depleting their own retirement funds.