Dr. Malloy Speaks on Budget Submission
Dr. David Malloy made a presentation on behalf of King's University College, to the Ontario Ministry of Finance during the 2024 budget consultations in St. Thomas, Ontario, on November 9. 2023. This was his full statement:
"Good afternoon. My name is David Malloy and I am the president of King’s University College in London. We are one of Canada’s leading Liberal Arts universities offering degree programs in the arts, social sciences, management and social work including a Master of Social Work. King’s is home to approximately 3500 full- and part-time students from across Canada. About twenty percent of our students are international, coming from 23 countries. King’s is the largest affiliate of Western University offering the broadest array of courses and the largest research enterprise.
"In a 2023 report by the Higher Education Strategy Associates, HESA, they state that Ontario lags behind all other provinces in Canada in institutional funding 'by freezing grants and allowing inflation to erode the value of the contribution.'
"Our ask is that the government enhances its investment in universities AND that this investment explicitly includes the Humanities and Social Sciences as well as STEM disciplines.
"We are at a time, not unlike the industrial revolution, when we need to invest in the education of humanities and social science students who will write the ethical playbook of technology in our lives. We need university trained minds who will diffuse public misinformation distributed by disruptive technology – the implications are wide-ranging including our hold on democracy.
"Without proper university funding Ontario faces a brain drain, a drop in GNP and negative economic impacts. Who will be the next entrepreneurs? Who will lead us through this new era of disruptive technology? We are on the cusp on the next phase of our civilization which is a market economy driven by disruptive technology including AI.
"We need the Ontario government to invest in the long-range success of driving Ontario’s economy and this means an educated workforce.
"Our province needs graduates with critical thinking, strong writing and communications skills. Funding the humanities and social sciences at the university level has to be at the heart of budget considerations otherwise Ontario falls further behind in leading the implementation of new technologies such as AI.
"If university education is properly funded then technology will not take away jobs – instead, with educated thinkers, we can have leaders in technology and we can teach others how to master it early and become the most productive leaders in the room – to guide and serve Ontario through this new evolution of productivity.
"At King’s we have students, employees and alumni who work in policy development, analytics and data science, philosophy and ethics, global commerce and we are poised to lead – but funding challenges by the Province hold us back from doing what is needed.
"At King’s, with proper funding from the Province and not reliant on our students’ tuition we can: integrate ethics, imagine wide-ranging consequences, re-imagine creative workflow, ensure a human has the final say, protect data, build a protocol that will serve Ontario and beyond. But we can’t do this without your support."