The Shippensburg University Council of Trustees unanimously approved new summer fees at Friday afternoon’s trustee meeting inside the Old Main Chapel.
According to Barbara G. Lyman, SU provost and senior vice president of Academic Affairs, the proposal for new summer fees focused on providing relief within the areas of concern with internships and K-12 Educator’s Institute.
Lyman first explained that the change in fees for summer internships deals with those who are located off campus.
Because of the off-campus locations, students began to complain that some of the fees were not applicable to them as they were unable to take advantage of the resources they were paying for including: student union fee, student activity fee, comprehensive health fee and student recreation fee.
Therefore, the trustees approved the motion to eliminate these four fees for those students who participate in an off-campus internship.
According to Lyman, this reduction in summer fees will eliminate $70 worth of fees which equates to a total savings of $210 per three-credit off-campus internship.
“We do not want students to be discouraged from taking internships because of fees they see as high or unfair,” Lyman said.
In addition to off-campus internships, the approved proposal also provides relief from summer fees for PCDE’s one-to-two-week intensive on-campus K–12 Educator Classes.
According to Lyman, these one-to-two week intensive classes are designed for full-time K–12 teachers seeking extra professional development.
The proposal explains that prior to the university’s use of Banner, teachers participating in these programs were required to pay for tuition (which the school districts cover) and the educational services fee and technology tuition Fee.
However, following the use of Banner for the summer of 2012, the teachers enrolled in the courses began to express their unhappiness with the additional fees they were facing of which they would not be taking advantage, such as the student union fee and the comprehensive health fee.
Lyman explained that following the unanimous approval, teachers participating in the PCDE K–12 courses will once again be exempt from paying the student union fee and the comprehensive health fee.
This alteration saves teachers $35 per credit or $105 per three-credit course.
According to the proposal, SU’s competitors have the ability to provide students with an invoice with the tuition and all fees in one lump sum allowing the school districts to pay for all of it.
Therefore, the removal of the summer fees was not only for practical matters, but it was also for competitive purposes.
In addition to the approval of the alterations to the summer fees, SU President William Ruud announced that Gov. Tom Corbett will give his budget address next Tuesday, Feb. 6, at which time the university will learn of any funding from the state.
Following Ruud, Deborah Jacobs, an APSCUF representative, spoke to inform the trustees about the current state of the faculty contract talks as well as the potential of a strike.
According to Jacobs, healthcare seems to be the main problem with regard to the terms of the agreement. However, she said, “We expect to complete the semester as we always have.”
Finally, the Council of Trustees approved Ruud’s performance evaluation. The evaluation will now be forwarded to the Board of Governors where it will be used for future contract extensions. Ruud’s contract expires June 30, 2015.
The next trustee meeting is set for March 15.