Student population on rise

January 27, 2005, vol. 32, no. 2

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There are now 770,000 fulltime university students in Canada according to the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada. That is an increase of about 120,000 students in just three years.

The association also reported that university graduates make up 16 per cent of the population over 18 but contribute almost 33 per cent of all income taxes. Conversely, they receive only nine per cent of government transfers to individuals.

Over their lifetime, university graduates on average earn $1 million more than those without a post-secondary education.

In 2003-04, Canadian universities awarded 25 per cent more undergraduate and graduate degrees than in 1990. More than two-thirds of PhD graduates are using their knowledge outside academe: in government, the private sector and not-for-profit organizations.

In 2001, Canadian university research led to $48 million in royalties, 1105 invention disclosures, 381 new patents and 354 licences. Since 1990, universities and their affiliated institutions have spun off 611 new companies. In 2001, such spin-offs employed more than 19,000 people and accounted for close to $2.6 billion in revenues.

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