Published April 10, 2015
Do you work with a student organization in need of classroom tech, but on a tight budget? Good news…classroom technology fees have been waived for student clubs on a trial basis for the rest of Spring 2015 semester.
To improve the student experience, UBIT is working hard to eliminate barriers. In a recent focus group for the three-year Wi-Fi Boost project, Minahil Khan, a UB Council Student Representative and past SA Senator, shared that classroom tech fees were making it difficult for clubs to rent spaces.
"When clubs want to rent a room, there isn’t always one available in the Student Union," Minahil said. "Other times, students are looking specifically for a lecture hall, and any time they rent outside the Student Union, there’s a $50 classroom technology fee."
The problem: some clubs only have an annual operating budget of $200. This means that often, student clubs couldn’t afford the right room for their needs. "Clubs were really discouraged once they’d learn they couldn’t afford rooms, so they weren’t using them," Minahil said.
"UBIT has eliminated classroom technology charges for student group usage for the remainder of the Spring 2015 semester," said J. Brice Bible, UB Vice President and Chief Information Officer. "The rooms are still to be schedule as previously with technology access granted via the CIT Help Desk. After the academic year, we will reevaluate to ensure the process is viable and running effectively for the students."
"I commend [VPCIO J. Brice Bible] on the amount of student feedback he has incorporated into UBIT’s initiatives," Minahil told UBIT News. "I think it’s a great investment on UBIT’s part. Undergrad clubs really need the lecture hall space, and this could give UBIT a better idea of who is using their services and for what purposes."
There’s also an advantage in accomplishing something that
many would say can’t be done: student government and
University administration working together on a compromise that
"It’s nice for UB students to know that we had a concern that was listened to, and now there’s a positive change as a result," Minahil said. "I think that’s a really powerful experience. Hopefully it takes away a little bit of student apathy."