What is CASA? PDF Print E-mail
Written by CASA   
Saturday, 26 April 2008 15:59
The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) is an alliance of student associations and student unions from across Canada. Through this network of student governments, CASA represents and defends the interests of post-secondary students to federal and inter-provincial levels of government.   

CASA group picture
  

A Strong Reputation

When CASA was first established in 1995, we had five member organizations. Today, CASA has grown to 23 member organizations and represents over 300,000 students nationwide. CASA will continue to grow as there is interest to become a CASA member from coast to coast.

As our membership grows stronger, so do the positive relationships CASA has with the government, key decision makers, and other Post-secondary Education Stakeholders. CASA is in constant dialogue and meets regularly with Federal Members of Parliament, Public Servants and Cabinet Ministers. We attend all relevant committee meetings and present at all appropriate committee hearings.


Effectiveness

CASA takes pride in results and considers itself to be a very effective organization. With steps forward like the 1998 "Education Budget" in which we saw the creation of the Millennium Scholarship Foundation, a bigger emphasis on Canada Study Grants, the extension of interest relief and the introduction of the Debt Reduction and Repayment program, CASA knows success is making a positive difference for students in Canada.

In 2002, CASA saw the increase in tax-exempt scholarships and the 2000 economic update announced the doubling of the education tax credit. CASA realizes that to effectively influence decision makers, one must be able to engage decision makers in open-dialogue.

In the 2007 federal budget, the Conservative Government took a positive step towards improving Canada's post-secondary system.   The budget included several initiatives for post-secondary education, including an increase of $800 million in earmarked federal funding for post-secondary education.


Policy Approach

CASA prides itself on presenting realistic policy initiatives on post-secondary education to the federal government. Our policies are focused around four broad topics: Accessibility, Affordability, Innovation and Quality. CASA believes that any academically qualified student with the desire to pursue post-secondary education should not face a barrier, financial or otherwise. CASA believes that students should not accumulate an unreasonable amount of debt in the pursuit of a post-secondary education or in continuing such an education.

CASA believes in a post-secondary education system that has sustainable research programs across all disciplines, with the benefits of such research shared across all levels of the student body. CASA believes in the collaboration between the federal and provincial governments, to ensure a properly funded and effective public post-secondary education system.

Issues that CASA works on include the Canada Student Loans Program, the Canada Student Grant Program,   Canada Study and Access Grants, the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation, access and affordability of PSE for under-represented students, Debt Reduction in Repayment, Interest Relief, interest rates on student loans, indirect research costs, graduate students, undergraduate research, the granting councils, protecting intellectual property, CST funding, tuition, public vs. private institutions, and the Pan-Canadian Accord.
Last Updated ( Friday, 08 August 2008 10:47 )