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Wait, there's a fee?

Picture of Ohio Northern University's campus. (photo/wedding spot)

Picture of Ohio Northern University's campus. (photo/wedding spot)

Ohio Northern University prides itself on being able to offer diverse opportunities for different students. Student Senate distributes budgets to many student clubs and organizations, allowing them to host many activities for the student body, including concerts, dances, and bingo nights. One thing many students may have not realized is that a student activities fee will be added to every student's billing for the next academic year.

The new fee will be in conjunction with the technology fee and college tuition. I was not aware of this fee until recently. Student Senate emailed a survey to the students for several weeks, asking how they thought the revenue should be spent to better their experience at ONU.

The fee was disclosed in the tuition increase letter the students received earlier in this academic school year. I did not know about this new fee until March. Even though it was disclosed in the letter and in the surveys, I didn't feel they effectively communicated how the money would be used or where it would go. I appreciate Student Senate for asking the students what should be done with the money, and I understand that ONU must add this fee. I simply wish I had been told. Let’s be honest. Not all students read the entire letter about the tuition increase. I would have appreciated being told the school was adding the fee on a separate email along with any other changes they added to the tuition.

I asked many of my peers on what they thought about the fee. Many expressed confusion; they did not know the fee was now included in the tuition.

“I would have liked to be told about the student fee,” sophomore Megan Kennedy said.

I wished the university had told us what was being added. I understand the letter was supposed to do that, but students don’t have the time to read the whole tuition letter. I would have liked a statement saying there were some additions in the tuition increase—like a student activity fee. I have the right to know where my money is going and what is being added to my tuition.

I appreciate ONU trying to add more events and asking the students for opinions about the fee instead of spending it as they see fit. I encourage the students to take the survey that is being sent out. This is their opportunity to have a say in where their money goes. This could include having more or fewer concerts, and whether or not a student wants his or her money to go to building renovations or something else.

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