California State University Board of Trustees today revealed a proposal to modify the undergraduate fee structure in the hopes of opening up room for more new admissions that the Board of Trustees will review next week.
The proposal would establish new fees for students who have earned more credits than are necessary to graduate, are taking more than 18 credits per semester, or are repeating a course.
CSU officials hope the proposal will result in greater efficiency for students in attaining their undergraduate degree.
If passed, the proposal is estimated to generate $30 million annually, Assistant Vice Chancellor Robert Turnage said.
“Very little will come in fees,” Turnage said in a teleconference about the revenue today.
“Most of the revenue will come from new students with the regular full-time fees.”
Any student with more than 150 units completed, called super seniors, will be charged $372 per unit beyond that point.
There are currently 9,000 super seniors, but none are expected to be affected, as they would be given a one-year grace period to complete their degree, CSU Executive Vice Chancellor Ephraim Smith said.
Students at CSU generally need 120 units to graduate.
The second fee will be charged to students who take more than 18 units per semester.
Currently, CSU has a two-tier fee system for students, charging a set price for students taking six or fewer units, and another for students taking more than six units.
If the proposal passes, any student with 18 or more units will be charged $182 per unit.
The third fee will be charged to any student who repeats a course. Any student taking a course over will be charged an additional $91 per course.
These fees are expected to help students graduate on time, and give them a greater incentive to achieve their degree, Assistant Vice Chancellor Eric Forbes said.
“These are boundary fees,” Forbes said. “The fees will make students more aware of the classes they need to take to graduate on time.”
There has already been an outcry from campuses in the Bay Area about the potential new fees students are facing.
In San Jose State University’s Art Quad, students held a speak-out today against the new fees they may be facing.
There were picket signs throughout the area, voicing the students’ displeasure with the potential fees, San Jose State super senior Herlinda Aguirre said.
“The fees are saying, pay up or drop out,” Aguirre said.
After the passage of Proposition 30 this week, many students felt increases in fees were over, Aguirre said.
“They are taking away the chance for students to enrich their education,” Aguirre said. “Students have to focus more on money than education.”
Prop 30, which passed with 54 percent of voters in favor of it, will increase sales taxes and income taxes on people with incomes over $250,000 annually to aid education budgets.
At San Francisco State’s Malcolm X Plaza, students signed surveys and held anti-fee related activities today.
Marcela Pimentel, a 20-year-old history major at SF State, said she thought the passage of Prop 30 would fix everything.
“Prop 30 passed, but the board still wants to add more fees,” Pimentel said.
Students also wrote messages to administrators with their feelings of the new fees to tape onto the administrative building, Pimentel said.
“It’s unnecessary to charge students more fees,” Pimentel said.
“There are many more solutions.”
In addition, the Students for Quality Education is collecting surveys from students facing obstacles to their pending graduation. The survey is located at www.surveymonkey.com/s/CSUGradObstacles.
Forbes said the fees aren’t the issue here, it’s the efficiency of the students.
“The most important aspect is we are turning down 20,000 to 30,000 students each year because there is no access,” Forbes said. “We need to help and guide them to graduate on time.”