Board officially removes graduation fee

The Board of Trustees unanimously voted to stop charging seniors a $100 graduation fee at the governing body’s May 13 meeting, a highly expected move after student leaders lobbied for the much-maligned fee’s removal throughout the spring.

The Class of 2012 will be the first class to have a graduation without fees. The charge is not being eaten by the University, instead GW will charge incoming freshmen a matriculation fee that will help fund their graduation costs four years later.

Freshmen, beginning with the Class of 2016, will be charged $350 to attend Colonial Inauguration. Students currently pay $250 to attend the three-day program.

The fee, instituted in 1999 by the Board of Trustees, was imposed to cover the high cost of graduating on the Ellipse. Commencement ceremonies no longer take place at that location, but spokeswoman Michelle Sherrard said in March that the fee covers “the costs associated with Commencement week celebrations and ceremonies, including diplomas, diploma covers, mailing costs and hoods for doctoral degree recipients.”

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