Fredericton — New Brunswick universities have unwittingly marketed themselves toward a new demographic by bullying the Liberal government into giving free tuition to students of low-income families. Because there’s no age limit on the new policy, UNB, STU, Mount A and Université de Moncton are seeing applications flood in from hundreds of senior citizens wanting to take advantage of this great deal.
“When I grew up during World War II, I never thought I’d have the chance to attend school,” said Gertrude Simmons of Moncton. “Now thanks to the Liberal government and that adorable Brian Gallant, I’m getting the opportunity I didn’t dare dream of — a university education! None of my siblings made it past the tenth grade, and I’ll have a B.A., which I’m told is practically a guarantee of a good job.”
“I’ve got nothing but time on my hands, and I don’t want to be a greeter at Walmart anymore,” said Bernie Malcolm, 87, “so I’m going to go back to school to make something of myself. I’ll make Mom proud yet, God rest her soul.”
This fall, students will be sitting in Criminology or Botany class alongside their parents — or even grandparents.
“It’s going to be super weird going to school with Grandpa… like now he’s not just dropping me off, but coming to class with me,” said second-year UNB student Vanessa Bubar. “What does he need a degree for? I get that it’s free, and that’s nice for him, but if he tries to go to the Social Club for Buckets, I’m pretending I don’t know him.”
A Manatee reporter spoke with several members of the university administrations across the province, who all seemed happy that people are applying for university, period.
“It doesn’t matter how old these people are. In fact, the older the better,” said STU recruiter Tom Jardine. “Think about it — if some geezer kicks the bucket the day they finish their degree, we get all the money from the government for their time spent at STU, but we’re not on the hook for finding another non-existent job post-graduation. It’s going to make us look great.”