Student fee increases to be voted on Oct. 24


The proposed increases to the Activity and Service, Health, and Athletic fees are set to go up for approval at the Local Fee Committee’s final meeting Friday, Oct. 24.

The proposal drew student concern and debate when Student Government (SG) posted the proposed increases to its Facebook page last week in an effort to be more transparent and solicit student feedback.

Many students were particularly concerned about the proposed 62-cent increase to the Athletic fee. The fee would be used to cover the differential in student-athletes scholarships, which would pay for their full cost of attendance, as estimated by the Financial Aid Office.

Overall, the committee will look at a proposed $2.16 per credit hour increase, which would amount to an extra $32.40 per semester for a student with a 15 credit-hour course load.  The proposed increases are made to the committee by USF Health and Athletics.

The student fee increases are limited by State law to $1.82 and the Local Fee Committee can choose to approve or deny increase requests at will, said SG Senate President Pro-Tempore Abdool Aziz.

Though the next committee meeting will be its last of the semester, SG President Jean Cocco said he is willing to meet with any student who is concerned with student fee increases. 

Half of the committee consists of student representatives and the other half is
comprised of faculty appointed by President Genshaft.

The faculty representatives include the Assistant Vice President for Academic Program Administration Gretchen Koehler, Director of the USF School of Architecture and Community Design Robert MacLeod, and Associate Dean for the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences Catherine Batsche.

Megan Cross, a graduate student in childhood education, and SG Senator Corey Ulloa were appointed by Cocco to sit on the committee. Cocco also appointed himself to the committee.

“I appointed Megan Cross because she is a graduate
student and she’s highly involved in graduate student issues. They pay the fee, as well,” Cocco said. “I picked Senator Ulloa because he’s on the senate and the senate is the one who deals with the money at the end of the day, so I wanted to give the senate some representation, as well.”

If the Local Fee Committee approves the proposed increases on Oct. 24, it will go directly to Genshaft and the Board of Trustees for final approval.

The process of deliberation by administration will be complete by the end of the semester, Cocco said.

The increases will affect students enrolling in the 2015-16 semester.