Photo by Kyle West

Both the men's volleyball team and women's basketball team took the weekend by storm with two victories each, while the men's basketball and women's volleyball teams won one out of their two games. Here are the stars of the weekend.

Sarah Gates

The second-year is no stranger to the Pita Pit Athlete of the Week award, most recently winning the weekend honour on Nov. 15, 2018, when she scored a career-high of 24 points. This weekend, she poured in 19 points for the Marauders in both of the team’s wins. Gates who was called to the 2018 Ontario University Athletics All-Rookie team, shot 50 per cent from the field and 40 per cent from the three, as well as collecting four rebounds in the win over Wilfrid Laurier University. Against the University of Guelph, she hit three of eight shots from three, and gave the team four steals and four rebounds.


Right side @MattColeP from @MACMVB and @macwbball guard Sarah Gates are the @PitaPitCanada Athletes of the Week. @mcmasteru #GoMacGo


— McMaster Marauders (@McMasterSports) January 14, 2019


Matt Passalent

After sitting out due to injury, Passalent hit the court for the first time of the regular season and did not miss a beat, being recognized as the Pita Pit Athlete of the Week for his efforts. Facing two U Sports top-10 opponents this weekend, the Marauders took home two victories and Passalent was a big part of both. The fourth-year had 10 kills, two aces and a block assist for 12.5 points Saturday against University of Windsor, and 15 kills and 18.5 points against Western University, which bumped them up to #4 in the national rankings.


There are 4️⃣ @mcmasteru teams ranked in this week's @usportsca Top 10s, with @MACMVB and men's wrestling both moving up two spots!


— McMaster Marauders (@McMasterSports) January 15, 2019


David McCulloch

In the Marauders’ second victory of the New Year, coming against the Guelph Gryphons, McCulloch contributed 23 points shooting 64 per cent from the field. The 97-80 road win seemed like just the fire the Marauders needed to bring it home and win again. Unfortunately, the Laurier Golden Hawks had other plans. Despite the fifth-year guard being the second highest leading scorer of the game with 15 points, the Golden Hawks came for revenge and defeated the Marauders 87-73 at home.


Jessie Narin

Narin led the Marauders offensively in both games against Windsor and Western this weekend. With 17 kills and 23 points, including five aces and a solo block, she helped Mac defeat Western on Saturday night in the fifth set. Narin, a right side, also led offensively the night before in the loss to Windsor, with 14 kills, three aces and a block assist for a team- and match-high 17.5 points.

This weekend McMaster basketball will face the Lakehead University Timberwolves in back-to-back home games this weekend, with the women playing at 6:00 p.m. and the men at 8:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Both volleyball teams will then take over Burridge on Sunday, as the women and men host the Brock University Badgers this Sunday at 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. respectively.


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Every year, Canadian postsecondary students are eligible for tuition, education and textbook credits that cost billions of dollars in funding. But, as it turns out, students from low-income households are least likely to benefit from the credits during school despite needing the money the most.

A recent study, conducted through the C.D. Howe Institute, found that tax credits “disproportionately” benefit students from well-off families in a given tax year. Most students from lower-income households benefit from the non-refundable credits only after they finish school and start earning enough taxable income.

Christine Neill, an associate professor of economics at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ont., authored the study. She found that the tax credit savings amount to about $2,000 per year for the average Canadian undergraduate student.

“For youth from relatively high income families, a couple thousand dollars per year may not change their decision to go to university or college, but it might change those from low-income families. The problem is, they tend to get the money later,” Neill said.

In 2012, households with family incomes below $30,000 used only 7 per cent of education credits transferred to parents in 2012, but made up about half of tax filers.

Households with an income above $80,000 used about 42 per cent of education credits transferred to parents but made up just 10 per cent of tax filers.

Neill recommended that simply making the credits refundable would vastly improve the program. Students not earning enough taxable income would then get a cheque in the mail for what they couldn’t claim on their taxes, instead of having to carry the credits forward.

The same recommendation has been made in the past by the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) and the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA).

According to Neill’s study, undergraduate students in British Columbia save the least from the tax credits, followed by students in Ontario and Newfoundland. Students in Alberta save the most out of all the provinces, but by a small margin.

A 2010 study found that college students save a larger proportion of their tuition from the credits than university students. However, college students end up with a smaller dollar value from the credits because their tuition is, on average, lower.

Last year, the federal government spent $1.6 billion on tuition, education and textbook tax credits — more than the $0.7 billion it spent on the Canada Student Loan Program.

Tuition and education credits were first introduced in 1961, and the option to “carry forward” unclaimed amounts was introduced in 1997.

“Before the carry-forward was introduced, kids from low income families may never have been able to claim the credits — after 1997, the program became more expensive but it became better,” Neill said.

In 2006, a textbook credit was added, raising questions from the academic community on the efficacy of the program.

Whether to stimulate enrolment in postsecondary education or to distribute wealth to students from lower-income families, the purpose of the tax credits hasn’t been clearly articulated.

Neill argues that the credits currently fail on both efficiency and equity principles. She also made a point that the credits aren’t well-advertised on university and college web pages that display tuition fee information.

“One major issue is that many people don’t know about [the credits], and they don’t know before going through postsecondary education,” Neill said. “If you don’t know something exists, how would it affect your behaviour?”

Infographic by Ben Barrett-Forrest / Multimedia Editor

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