Drastic change needed for University’s billing

By on January 29, 2004

Over the last decade, Quinnipiac University has risen into the national spotlight through its expansion both on campus and in the community. The athletic programs have risen from division III to division I and in some cases, teams have advanced to the NCAA tournament.

With this added growth, Quinnipiac has been able to upgrade the campus facilities, construct spectacular buildings like the Arthur Bernhard Library and Mountainview and hire prestigious professors to head the many schools on this campus. The price tag on these improvements has caused the University to increase the tuition of the school every year.

The yearly tuition for the average full-time student taking 15 credits and living on campus is over $30,000. With such a large tuition cost, a student whose family is in the middle or lower class has been forced out and their spots have been filled with students who drive BMW’s and Mercedes.

The fact that these students are now the majority on this campus instead of the minority hurts the students from lower income families.Over winter break, Quinnipiac sent two papers to a student’s residence – the student’s class schedule and outstanding tuition bill for the spring semester.

A pink copy had to be sent back to the school by Jan. 2 to keep a student’s spot in his/her classes and show how they will pay their bill. If the pink sheet was late, a $75 fee was to be charged to the account.

What exactly is this fee used for? As if it is not enough of a penalty to have a hold put on your account, an unnecessary fee is charged. To penalize that amount of money is over the top especially for college students who do not have mommy and daddy footing the bill.

This is where students from lower class families get hurt. The school assumes that everyone who attends Quinnipiac can pay their hefty fines; this assumption is far from the truth. Students who live in both the Hill and the Complex have to buy food, as they do not have a meal plan, along with books, clothes and other living expenses.

No one expects college, especially Quinnipiac, to be cheap, but the fact that students who come here spend so much money to attend already, adding unnecessary fines and charges is ridiculous and a complete showing of greed.

Along with the return of the pink sheet at the beginning of each semester, students are required to pay one-third of their tuition balance so they can attend classes and be able to add and drop classes as they please.

In the past, students, like me, who could not pay the balance of their tuition in the beginning of the semester, could sign a promissory note which stated that the tuition balance would be paid in full by the time of registration for the following semester had occurred. If the outstanding balance was not paid, a hold would be placed on the account, and that student could not register for classes.

Quinnipiac is doing something different this year. They are not allowing students with tuition balances to sign promissory notes unless they have been approved by the powers that be.

This limits the options of these students to live with the hold on their account until their loan comes in to the university, pay the balance with a credit card or scrape up some money which will leave a financial burden on the student. It is understandable that the University wants its money but is this really the best course of action? Why should students who cannot afford to pay the remaining tuition in full be penalized?

The university will get its money by the end of the year; they will not be short in anyway, so why create havoc amongst some of the student population?As if students do not have enogh to worry about with the beginning of classes, some students must now worry about paying their tuition or they will not be able to go to class or make the necessary changes to their respective schedule.

Quinnipiac is built around values. In the University’s mission statement, it says that two of the school’s commitments are “excellence in education [and] sensitivity to students.”

How does this situation promote either of these? By not letting its students add and drop and go to class, Quinnipiac is not promoting excellence in education, it is promoting the fact that they want their money.

This situation also does not show any type of sensitivity towards the student population and those students’ financial situations.

Students who have not or cannot pay their tuition balance must go back and forth from Financial Aid and the Bursar’s office, waiting in excessively long lines just to be told there is a hold on their account.

In this way the University no longer caters to the needs of its students whose families are not in the same classes as that of lawyers, doctors or real-estate agents.

So bring back the promissory note to help your students get through the semester. By taking it away the University insures that they get their money, but at what cost of its students?


About Matt Lefebvre