SA proposes increased grad-student activity fee

By Matt James

The Student Association Finance Committee Tuesday discussed a proposal to raise the student activity fee to $12.12 for graduate students with 12 credit hours per semester.

Graduate students were charged $6.72 for the fee this semester, which is $5.40 less than the $12.12 that law students were charged. Although still in the discussion stages, the hike would make charges for law and graduate students equal. Undergraduate students paid $17.16 for the student activity fee this semester.

SA Treasurer Diana Turowski brought the idea up for discussion because she said she could not “see how graduate and law students really benefit (from the student activity fee) any less than undergraduate students.”

Turowski stated in her proposal that she has “not been able to determine a rationale why law and graduate students differ by 55 cents a credit hour.”

Along with the fees graduate and law students pay, they pay additional fees associated with their respective colleges, Turowski said.

As a result, SA Senator Tom Link said graduate and law students “have all the benefits of the student population plus the benefits they get through their own colleges.”

“Graduate students are going to want to take advantage of the same opportunities that undergraduates are,” Link said.

If implemented, the increase would generate more than $30,600 in the SA’s general reserve funds. More than $657,600 was allocated to organizations by the SA this year. Among the organizations receiving more than $65,000 this year: Campus Activity Board, the SA, and Students’ Legal Assistance.

Also Tuesday, the Finance Committee approved supplemental funding totaling $352.70 for mistakes made in transportation budgets of the Black Choir, Alpine Racing Team, NIU Bowling Club and the Rugby Team.

The supplemental funding will go to the SA senate for appoval Sunday.