Charge: No formal charge; action initiated by committee on the issue of whether University College students who attend full-time should pay full time fees.
University College students pay a reduced standard student fee. This reduced fee was calculated on the presumption that University College students are part-time and make less use of the services that are supported by these fees. For example, a full-time Camden Arts and Science student pays $456 in fees, as compared to a full-time University College Camden student paying $150 in fees. A Rutgers College full-time student pays $545 in fees, as compared to $108 for a full-time New Brunswick University College student. However, an increasing number of University College students are in fact full-time, and pay full tuition while continuing to pay lower student fees.
The Committee was concerned on the issue of equity, but a variety of questions needed to be answered before the issue could be addressed: a) Were University College students who were full-time, typically full-time for one- semester in order to finish up, or were they students who regularly took a full-time load, and were similar in this respect to other full-time students in the residential colleges? b) If so what about equity in terms of availability of services and facilities? c) There was also a question of the potential costs of providing extended hours in facilities, such as keeping health centers open additional hours, as well as Gym and other facilities.
What do student fees cover?
In order to provide additional information, the Committee met with Ed Kozak, Associate Vice President for Auxiliary Services. Mr. Kozak provides an overview of how auxiliary services are supported. Student Centers are supported by debt service or mandated fees that are included in student fees; not by State funds. Part of the fees are University-centered fees that are centrally administered; for example, the Health services fee(the health services fee is $93). There are dean-oriented fees used for programming; these vary by college. There are student level fees, where students ask to impose the fee; this could be by college and affiliate groups.
How many University College students attend full-time?
In the Fall of 1999, 45% of Camden University College students were full time, 41% of New Brunswick University College students were full-time, and 39% of Newark University College students were full time. Data was also presented that documents that the vast majority of full-time University College students tend to take multiple full-time semesters: 96% of (currently enrolled full-time UC students who are not new admits) have taken two or more full-time semesters; 87% have taken three or more semesters. Furthermore, the pattern is similar for the three campuses, Camden, New Brunswick, and Newark. Virtually all full-time UC students take at least one course during the day, and are therefore on campus during times when many of the services are available and facilities are open.
Health care is an issue of particular importance with respect to equity. Many University College students -- even full-time students -- may have their own health insurance. Thus, if full-time University College students pay full-time fees which include basic health care, they may be forced to pay for a benefit they do not need. However, the student health insurance is secondary coverage that has benefits for students who already have coverage. For example, it will reimburse participants for the deductible and coinsurance amounts on their primary insurance for covered expenses. Under the present system, University College students cannot use the student health centers, even though there are circumstances where it may be desirable to do so. It was also noted that full-time students in all the colleges are required to pay the fees even if they are covered under their parent's or their own health insurance.
The committee also considered whether including full-time University College students in the student health plan might lead to increased costs due to the demographic and age distribution effect on increased demand for health services. James Breeding, Director of the Department of Risk Management and Insurance at Rutgers reviewed this issue, and concluded that "The inclusion of the University College students will have no identifiable current or future impact on premium costs based on the current program design."
University College students currently do not normally have access to Rutgers housing. Although there were 168 University College full-time students in housing during Spring semester 2000, these students had to be told that they could not continue to have housing next term because housing is filled to capacity. The committee noted that there is a general need for more housing. Mr. Kozack discussed the idea of affiliates, where, in terms of student services and facilities, full-time UC students could be affiliated to a residential college. He also noted that as dorms are wired for RUNet and video beamed-in instruction, the opportunities and attractiveness of dorms may fulfill needs of certain full-time UC students. The committee also noted that housing is not covered for any student by the fees under discussion. The committee agreed that housing was a separate issue from that of equity in fee services.
Availability of services supported by fees
One of the major equity issues considered by the committee is whether UC students have equal access to services. Mr. Kozack noted that, in terms of extended hours of service, many departments have experimented with remaining open in the evening, particularly at key busy times. Many offices are open late at night during the first weeks of the semester. Mr. Kozack felt that big breakthroughs in extending service will be due to application of technology on the ways that services are provided. The committee agreed that there should be equity in availability and access of services. It was felt, based on the statistical patterns in the data, that most full-time University College students have access to services covered by the fees.
Conclusions and Recommendation
After reviewing the data, it was the unanimous sense of the committee that, as a matter of equity, the student fee for full-time UC students should be the same as for all other full-time students. However, there are details that need to be worked out to assure equity of services. For example, the issue was raised of UC governing associations servicing large numbers of full-time students being able to get rooms in the student centers they are helping to support, on all three campuses. There could be UC affiliates in the same way that engineering and pharmacy students are affiliated for the purpose of student services.
The committee also discussed various alternatives for implementing the
comparable full-time fee for full-time UC students. One alternative was
a phase in over a two- or three-year period for existing students, with
it starting immediately for next year's new students. It was pointed out
that, in any case, it would be several years from the time the committee
had begun reviewing the issue to the time of implementation.
Whereas, the University Senate Budget Committee has considered the issue of full-time University College students’ payment of student fees which are less than those paid by other full-time Rutgers students; and,
Whereas, the Budget Committee agreed that, in the interest of fairness and equity, all full-time students should pay the same student fees; and,
Whereas, the Budget Committee has clearly outlined its rationale and conclusions in its report to the University Senate, including recommendations, and that the report and its recommendations have been duly considered by the Senate;
Therefore, Be It Resolved, that the University Senate hereby hereby approves the Budget Committee’s report on this issue, and recommends that full-time University College students pay the same student fees as other full-time Rutgers students;
Be It Further Resolved, that the University should strive to meet the needs of accessibility of services for full-time University College students.
Hamm, Michael, Cook (F), Co-chair
Naus, Joseph, FAS-NB (F), Co-chair
Bell, Rudolph, Rutgers (F)
Bhoj, Dinesh, At Large-Camden (F)
Boucher, Thomas, Engineering (F)
Bushnell, Michael, Engineering (F)
Cizewski, Jolie, GS-NB (F)
Colaizzi, John, Pharmacy Dean (A)
Esser, Ken, Livingston (S)
Goodman, Leonard, FOM (F)
Hall, Stan, NFAS (F)
Hamilton, Robert, Graduate Student BOT Representative (S) (nonvoting senator)
Jackson, Michael, GS-NB (S)
Koehler, Robert, Alumni Federation
Laguna-Diaz, Asela, At Large-Newark (F)
McCloughan, Robert, Alumni Federation
McKeever, Kenneth, Cook (F)
O’Connor, Daniel, SCILS (F)
Penfield, Douglas, GSE (F)
Saidel, William, CCAS (F)
Silver, Deborah, GS-NB (F)
Stahley, Barbara, Douglass (S)
Swenson, James, Rutgers (F)
Szatrowski, Ted, FOM (F)
Tallau, Adeline, Libraries (F)
Tello, Anna, Rutgers (S)
Tuckman, Howard, FOM/SB-NB Dean (A)
Wasserman, Mark, FAS-NB (F)
Winterbauer, Nancy, VP for Budgeting (A) – Administrative Liaison