TCDSU launch petition against proposed increases to masters’ fees

TCDSU have said the proposed increases “threatens to make education further inaccessible”

Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) has launched a petition against proposed increases to masters’ degree fees saying that the extra cost increases inaccessibility of these courses. 

Trinity has proposed a 2.3% increase to masters’ fees along with a 10% increase for certain masters’ programmes and non-EU courses for the 2025/2026 academic year.

The increase would affect tuition costs for masters College wide including programmes in Tangent, the faculty of health sciences, the faculty of arts, faculty humanities and social sciences and the faculty science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

A petition launched by TCDSU opposing the proposed increases has garnered over 450 signatures as of April 27. 

“This is opposed by students, as it threatens to make education further inaccessible”, said the petition. 

“Not only are we treated like cash cows, but we lack crucial student services – and this proposed increase is just further insult to injury.”

It continued: “If these proposals go ahead, it will make education further a luxury product, rather than a public good for all”. 

“These courses already cost anywhere between €7,000 to €36,000 per year and represent a financial burden for students, and are way above the maximum SUSI tuition fee grant. Education is a right and not a luxury and everyone should be able to avail of it”.

In a statement on the petition TCDSU President László Molnárfi said: “Trinity’s attempts to increase course fees will hurt the most vulnerable amongst us and further make it hard for people from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds to access education.”

He went on to say how “students should not have to bear the brunt of government underfunding” and how College should “work and collaborate with students on innovative solutions to the crisis”. 

TCDSU Communications and Marketing Officer Aiesha Wong, said: “I understand Trinity’s need to ensure the college’s financial stability in light of inflation, however, I question why they have immediately resorted to burdening students with this funding responsibility when there are alternative -completely viable- options to consider, such as increasing the price of Book of Kells admission.” 

“Trinity is one of the few colleges in the country that relies on an internationally renowned tourist attraction for funding, alongside student fees.”

“How is it that other universities in Ireland are able to get by without such a lucrative source of additional income?”

She concluded saying: “This raises questions about whether Trinity is truly prioritising the best interests of its students, or if one of Ireland’s top universities is simply prioritising tourists, with education being an afterthought.” 

A memorandum seen by Trinity News from the Financial Operation Managers to the Financial Committee said “schools will have the opportunity through the derogation process to reconsider individual course fees based on an assessment of demand, capacity and quality as appropriate”. 

The final proposal will be brought to the board on May 22 following the input and agreement of the Finance Committee. 

This proposal comes after a year of numerous protests by TCDSU against rent hikes by College, most notably of which was the Book of Kells blockade which protested against the 2% fee increase in Trinity accommodation, the maximum legal limit in the Dublin rent pressure zone.

Aoibhinn Clancy

Aoibhínn Clancy is the Deputy News Editor of Trinity News and is currently in her Junior Sophister Year studying History and Political Science.