Student Senate discusses increase in student activity fees – The Wayne Stater
The Student Senate is currently discussing a proposal to increase the cap on student activity fees from 12 credit hours to 15 and will host a forum for students to express their views on the motion.
The current charge, set at $ 6.25 per credit hour, is capped at 12 hours. WSC requires that students take at least 12 credit hours to be considered a full-time student. Student Senate President Blake Aspen said the proposal would move that cap to 15 credit hours.
The cap means that the charges stop at 12 credit hours. At this level, students pay a total of $ 75 for 12 credit hours. Any student who takes more credit hours, like 15 or 18, pays the same amount, $ 75, because the cap stops at 12. If successful, the charge would stop at 15 credit hours, which increases the total by $ 18.75 if students take that many credits.
Aspen explained that the amount allocated to clubs last year was $ 462,000.
“If you have 3,800 students, they pay $ 75 per semester if they take 12 credit hours,” Aspen said. “That would work out to about $ 285,000 per semester. So our proposal is to increase that to 15 credit hours – the cap, not the fees. This would equate to approximately $ 356,000 per semester, which is considerably higher than [before.]”Aspen said.
The vice president of allowances, explained Jaycee Hammer, is the large sum of money the Senate distributes among clubs.
The Student Senate has not formally proposed this motion, but it is currently under discussion.
“Yesterday I had a meeting with President Rames, and she kind of expressed some shock that we even have a cap because students who take 18 credit hours per semester really get a good deal,” he said. said Aspen. “They use the parking lots more, they use the campus facilities more, so you know it’s a little surprising.”
According to the WSC website, the number of students on campus increased by 25% between 2011 and 2021. President Rames posted a census that projects Wayne will have about 4,200 students by the end of the month, according to Aspen.
In the past, Wayne compared closely to Chadron and Peru in terms of size, but the WSC is quickly approaching the University of Nebraska at Kearney in terms of population. According to the UNK website, the college has 5,274 undergraduates and 1,628 postgraduates.
“Of all the state college systems, we have the highest student attendance, [but] our cap is the lowest. I just think our activities and numbers are increasing, so I think it would be nice to have more funding for clubs, ”said Hammer.
Hammer revealed that on Allowance Day this year, the Senate had to cut funding for a few clubs.
Last year, the Student Senate added 10 new clubs to its roster, and at the next meeting they will deliberate on inducting this year’s seventh new club. The Aristocats dance team has also recently turned to a club sport, which will then need to be funded by the Senate. With the number of students, vehicles, clubs and more around campus increasing, Hammer and Aspen see this proposal as a necessary action.
“You always get a really good deal. Most campuses don’t have a credit hour cap, so we would still have Nebraska’s lowest charge per credit hour at $ 6.25. I think Lincoln is paying $ 12 or something crazy, ”Aspen said.
According to their websites, the activity fee for students in Chadron and Peru is $ 7 per credit hour.
The Student Senate budget includes clubs, intramural, Wildcat Wheels, SkillsUSA, the Student Activities Board and more. Recently, they partially paid for the renovations of the nature trail and the tennis court.
Soon Aspen hopes to use some of that budget to address the concerns of students on campus and keep the promises he made during his campaign for his position.
“So these are the ways in which students are going to directly see the benefits,” Aspen said. “The parking lots were kind of on their own for a while, so when Jaycee and I were running we were like, ‘Okay, we have to like to do something about it’ because that’s a problem. evident on campus. ”
He recommended adding cameras to all parking lots, explaining that the task should no longer seem impossible.
If this proposal passes, the Senate hopes that it will start next year. It must first pass through the Senate, then the discussion forum of the student body and be debated by the Board of Directors, before coming into force.
The Student Senate, after pushing the motion forward within its own ranks, hopes to organize a forum to hear student opinions.
Taylor Ference, president of Campus PR and Technology for the Senate, expects the discussion to take place shortly after the midterm break.
During the forum, the Student Senate would present an overview of its proposal before giving the floor to the student body. Ference said all students who have an opinion or an interest in where their money is going should attend the meeting, whether or not they support the proposal.
“As a Student Senate, we want to do what’s right for all of our constituents,” Ference said. “So if students who are against show up, but they’re the only people showing up, we’re going to vote against. Basically we’ll go with the consensus of the audience, and if the majority doesn’t show up who wants it, then we’ll go with that, but that couldn’t be the real one. [wishes of the student body.]”
Ference will post any material regarding a forum on Student Senate social media accounts, on campus information flyers, as well as a campus-wide email to involve as many students as possible.
Students who have opinions or suggestions on Senate legislation should not only attend forums, they should also run for positions, Aspen said.
“So while we understand why there is skepticism, and maybe even a lack of confidence, it’s going to be used correctly. If the students don’t like the way this money is spent, run. Run for the Student Senate, ”Aspen said.