This article is from the archives of the UB Reporter.

Hike proposed for comprehensive student fee

Increase to support technology, bus contract, improvement to Student Union

Published: March 24, 2005

Reporter Editor

The comprehensive student fee would increase by $41 a semester for full-time undergraduates—raising it to $779.25 beginning with the fall 2005 semester—under a proposal by Dennis Black, vice president for student affairs.

The fee would increase $30.50 for full-time graduate and professional students under the proposal, bringing it to $586.75 for the semester.

The proposed increase would support increased technology costs and services, increased bus-contract and parking-lot maintenance costs, enhanced athletic and recreation programming, improvements to the North Campus Student Union and a North Campus health services satellite.

Fees would continue to be prorated on a credit-hour basis for part-time students and the current waiver policy will be maintained. Individual student government mandatory activity fees would continue to be assessed in addition to the comprehensive fee.

The proposed per-semester increases includes $7 for technology, $11.50 for transportation, $8 for health services, $10.50 for intercollegiate athletics—assessed to undergraduates only—and $4 for campus life.

The proposed New York State budget for the coming year is expected to continue to reflect the economic difficulties the nation faces today, Black said. The fiscal plan recognizes an anticipated $6 billion state deficit "that will certainly impact all of us in the year ahead," he said.

Moreover, SUNY is discussing a tuition proposal for 2005-06 that would increase tuition by $500 for 2005-06, as well as set a four-year tuition rate for first-year undergraduates and currently enrolled students.

"To continue to offer the programs and services UB students need and expect, even in this challenging economic climate, increases in the comprehensive fee have been proposed at a rate equivalent to the Higher Education Price Index (a national index of annual education costs)," about 5 percent.

The fee increase for technology would provide funds to enhance the dedicated source of funding to maintain and replace the equipment in the existing technology classrooms, and to progressively increase the number of technology-enabled classrooms to meet demand. It also would assist in covering the increasing costs of electronic materials and the significant cost increase of the university's license with Microsoft.

The transportation increase would be used to address the projected 47 percent increase in the current bus contract, as well as the increased cost of maintaining campus parking lots.

The intercollegiate athletics increase would be used to support enhancements for the women's athletics programs to bring them on par with the men's programs. It also would be used to support further investment in the Division I program that is needed to be competitive with UB's peer institutions, as well as inflationary costs associated with grant-in-aids, team travel and student recruiting, administrative support focusing on student wellness issues and increased student-payroll costs within Recreation and Intramural Services.

The campus life increase would fund a glass enclosure to the front of the Student Union, which would improve temperature control to the special-events area in the lobby.

The health services increase would support a satellite medical office on the North Campus.

Black noted that the final comprehensive fee recommendations for 2005-06 will be made after student consultation before the end of the semester and exams. Students may comment via email at through April 8.

Representatives from the areas supported by student fees will answer questions posed through the comprehensive fee Web site at http:// and through a comprehensive fee listserv to be held through April 8.

In addition, an assessment of student fee interests and concerns will be conducted via the My Opinion survey that can be accessed through MyUB. The results will be shared via the comprehensive Web site.

More information on the comprehensive fees, the proposed increases and the waiver process is available at http://

Comprehensive fee adjustments, if adopted, will be reflected in student account statements distributed to all returning and new students in mid-July, Black said.

"UB desires to remain as one of the nation's best buys in higher education and will continue to be a major public university and the premier public institution in the Northeast with continued student support," he said.