SA passes bill against doctoral fee increases

The Student Association Senate approved a resolution Tuesday which urges University administrators not to charge extra fees to graduate and doctoral students who are writing dissertations after they complete required course work.

The resolution recommends University administrators waive the additional cost of one credit hour per semester for graduate students in the dissertation or thesis stage. The resolution also advises the University to waive the fee on new master’s degree candidates until the second semester of continued enrollment, and until the fifth semester for doctoral students.

The Senate’s decision comes after the University announced earlier this semester it would increase the fee to $714.50 per semester from $35, riling graduate students.

In other business Tuesday, the Senate unanimously passed a bill to fund 33 registered student organizations.

Several additional finance bills also were on the docket but were not discussed. The bills will be discussed at the Senate’s next meeting Sept. 30.

SA President Carrie Potter said she is most concerned with the finance bill regarding special event funds for student groups. She said she fears groups will not know which money is allocated as special events funds and which money is allocated for regular expenses.

“It is essential that we make every effort possible to explain the new process to groups, help them get their money correctly and fairly and help them spend their money responsibly,” she said.

The Senate appointed six new senators Tuesday. Three uncontested Senate vacancies were filled by students who previously were nominated to fill these spots. The new senators, Ashley Cooke, Xingcheng Hua and Garrett J. Day Jr. were unanimously approved to fill graduate seats.

Three contested seats also were filled at the meeting. David Burt, a student in the School of Business and Public Management, filled the undergraduate at-large seat. Senior Jonathan Skrmetti was chosen to fill the vacant Columbian School of Arts and Sciences seat and Shelley Mountjoy will fill the vacant School of Engineering and Applied Science seat.

Additionally, Ed Meinert was confirmed by the Senate to be the SA’s director of tuition action.

“I feel honored to represent the student body and encourage all students to get involved and approach me with any questions or concerns they might have,” Burt said at the meeting.

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