As students of a public university, which is directly tied to the success or financial demise of the state, we expect that sometimes our needs will come second.
We understand that during the current economic climate, departments around campus are probably expecting pressure for staff cuts, budget cuts and pulling back on services. Consequently the secondary goals of the higher education system will probably take a back seat to the singular purpose of graduating students from CCSU.
Many of the CCSU students are non-traditional and most are attending because, frankly, CCSU is a less expensive option for college in the area; the average student commutes, has a part time job, or two, and most save money to pay for their own education.
CCSU is a university by which students have become complacent with a lack of organization. The students simply accept that receiving student loans from the Bursar’s office takes more time than seemingly plausible, obtaining graded papers is near impossible within the time zone of a week and ResLife, who seem adamant on securing students’ housing deposits within strict deadlines are seemingly unorganized when students move into halls.
Yet CCSU has little to no reserve about doling out late fees if students miss a tuition payment by a day and that apparently should simply be acceptable. But why should students meet the demands of the university, when the university does not meet the demands and needs of the student?
A university, which is notoriously lax in providing anything to its students in a timely fashion, should not simply have the right to continue to hold numbers such as 15, 20 or even 30 percent over our heads in tuition hikes.
Firstly, in today’s economic situation, how can a university that is dominated by students who are financially strained in the best of times, expect students to keep their heads above water when ridiculous late fees are added to accounts?
Secondly, if the Bursar’s office is openly adding late fees to accounts, can students therefore start ‘punishing’ other aspects of CCSU – surely ResLife would love to be charged for the amount of hours students waste gaining the correct keys and room information on move in day.
On the other hand as student we would like to at least be informed and be prepared when, for example, the Bursar’s office cannot organize itself to create individual payment plans for students who are having a similarly difficult time keeping financially afloat.
It’s not that students won’t sympathize with a Bursar’s office that may be struggling to keep staff around to provide their usual level of service and care; it’s just that students are not aware of the situation – if there even is a situation.
When major budget cuts threaten to increase tuition or decrease the normal level of service provided to students, we need to know about it – if students are not making payments on time, the Bursar’s office would ask questions – we as students are simply asking questions in the same respect – why has the service and communication taken a turn for the worse at CCSU?
Better lines of communication between the administration, the faculty and the students need to be established, especially when each party is suffering equally under the weight of a deteriorating economy.
The school cannot expect students to stand idly by while the cost of their education continues to be pushed higher and higher with no end in sight.
Speculation does not help the self-sustaining student prepare for the economic rigors that await them in the coming months and years.
Students naturally will bite the bullet; most have little or no choice. But we do deserve the right and courtesy of knowing how much it is going to hurt.