By Ryan Hoefle
A rise in student fees has left some students questioning the rational behind the fiscal decisions of the University. Last Tuesday, UO administration instituted an increase of more than $300 to student fees to help fund renovations scheduled for the EMU and the Student Rec Center that will start in the upcoming fall term.
The friction caused by administered fees from Johnson Hall and the students who pay them becomes more apparent with each yearly increase in tuition. UO students could potentially be dealt a 6% increase in tuition in addition to the new fees in the next academic year. The latest rise in fees would go towards restoration projects to be completed after some fee-paying students have already graduated, causing some to oppose the proposed increase.
“I think it is bullshit that I have to pay for something that I get absolutely no benefit from. It is like paying for a sandwich but you only get a promise that the bread is in the oven,” says William Moser, a junior at the UO. This is the chief complaint of those opposed to the fee and Moser suggests that the cost of renovations should be prorated so that the students most likely to use the refurbished facilities would pay for the brunt of the project.
While some argue that they should not be the ones paying for the new additions on campus that they will not be able to utilize, there are those who are in support for the newly added fee. Those in favor claim that they would benefit the university as a whole because the new facilities would act as their legacy that would increase the quality of life for future students on campus.
“Since I work at the rec, it’s an advantage for my working community and I think it will open up opportunities for the 25,000 students here” says Aaron Smirnoff, sophomore business major that is one of the many students that benefit from the campus facilities the university offers. Others find it easier to support such a transparent move by administration.
“I guess it’s nice to have had facts as to where our money is going to increase and that we will actually be benefiting from the costs,” says Meredith Smith a UO graduate student that has had some concerns over the practices of the administration’s treatment of similar financial situations in the past.
While there is still the issue of finding replacements for these amenities while they are being updated, it is looking more and more like students can come to expect walking by construction equipment on their way to class and can anticipate a yet another pair of modernized facilities to be included on the University of Oregon campus.