New Brunswick — The provincial government is doing everything in its power to drive out recent graduates and young professionals, despite claiming for the past several years that above all else, they want them to stay to help grow the economy and combat the aging, shrinking population. With the recent tuition rebate cut, graduates have run out of reasons to stay in New Brunswick other than fear of actual big cities and reluctance to stop living off of their parents’ begrudging hospitality.
“Good riddance,” Premier Brian Gallant was caught muttering as he consoled the now-ex-girlfriend of Lerrin Matthews at the Fredericton Airport. Matthews is a University of New Brunswick graduate of 2011 who had been working at an entry-level position in a forestry management company since graduation. He had a low wage and no prospects of growth in the company, but each year Matthews convinced himself to stay just another year to claim his tuition rebate and avoid the hassle of moving.
“There were a bunch of us taking a new WestJet flight out of Fredericton to go look for work in Toronto, and Brian Gallant showed up for a press opportunity. He spoke about how sad it was to see us go, but when he shook my hand he pulled me in real close and whispered ‘One down, 40,000 to go.’ He then put his arm around Sherry and winked at me while she cried into his shoulder,” said a disgusted Matthews, referring to the former love-of-his-life who couldn’t move due to crippling student loan debt.
Gallant’s government claims to be using the money from the tuition-rebate cut to help more new students have easier access to student loans. More debt will force young people to stay in the province because they won’t be able to afford to escape after 4 years of postsecondary education.
“We are also exploring new initiatives to attract students to New Brunswick and keep them here — specifically athletic female students to, uh, raise the profile of this hot-and-wild province,” said Gallant at the airport while a raucous cheer erupted from his ministers in attendance. “Additionally, we want to attract immigrants. Latina and Asian would be nice. Students. For universities,” he specified.
“If 2 or 3 young professionals want to come to New Brunswick at the same time as a group, I’d personally give them a warm welcome,” added Gallant, before Finance Minister Roger Melanson dragged him away from the podium.
Some graduates have been organizing group action to protest the tuition-rebate cut and the loss of their girlfriends. More information can be found here.