Op-Ed: New fee to help students

The Hatchet article “RHA passes mandatory fee” (Nov. 15, p. 1) horribly misrepresents the action taken by the Residence Hall Association pertaining to the collection of hall dues. What the writer of this story was told by the RHA but chose to clearly misrepresent is the exploratory status of this issue. This resolution is merely a recommendation with the full support of the RHA, giving the president the mandate to explore the issue. Meetings have taken place to discuss the feasibility of collecting the fee through the University, to work out the logistics of disbursing the money and other details. To characterize this resolution as the last word on whether or not this fee will be mandatory is totally inaccurate.

Additionally, the quote from Assistant Dean Mark Levine was presented in a way that implied the RHA was imposing a fee where they had no authority. Again, this resolution is a recommendation, not a final policy decision. In fact, RHA is well aware of the various University departments we must first consult, as told by Levine in a meeting prior to the article.

Contrary to popular belief, money does not grow on trees, and if the entire freshman class, not just those students living in larger halls, is going to be adequately served, funds have to be raised and not just acquired from some mysterious University budget. Currently, the hall councils in smaller residence halls have a horrible disadvantage to the big halls. It is not fair for some students to be offered more services than others, and that is what this resolution aims to address.

Finally, to claim that The Hatchet Web poll reported on Nov. 19 has any weight on this issue is a farce. A poll derived from the answers of only 62 respondents who may or may not be on-campus residents is far from scientific. The 85 people who were actually elected to represent the people who would be affected by this fee voted in favor of it – a vote of confidence far more valuable than a self-selected response from students who come across The Hatchet Web site.

-The writer, a senior, is president of the Residence Hall Association.

The Hatchet has disabled comments on our website. Learn more.