Student District Council discusses increasing student activity fee

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Agriculture sophomore Kytheranialynn Fambrough-Brown, Palo Alto College Student Government Association president, shares with SGA leaders from other Alamo Colleges a poster she made to help inform students about the student service fee increase proposal Feb. 10 at the Student District Council meeting. The Student District Council meeting reviewed the posters made by PAC and Northwest Vista SGA groups to see what poster can be used to inform all Alamo Colleges students with the same information, and they discussed when they can hand the posters out. Information included in the PAC poster was what does the fee pay for, how much is the fee and what would the $2 increase do? Photo by Brianna Rodrigue

Delegates prepare flier, survey and voting opportunity for students.

By Rachel Cooper

sac-ranger@alamo.edu

Eleven delegates from Student Government Associations across the district came together Feb. 10 as the Student District Council (SDC) and proposed a chance for students to vote on a change in the student activity fee.

They also prepared a flier and survey to present to students in each of the five Alamo Colleges.

The survey is now available on OrgSync on the Student District Council’s page.

The current student activity fee is $1 per credit hour, president of both Northeast Lakeview’s SGA and SDC, Richard Wells said.

“The fee that we have right now is very minimal when you compare it to other colleges. When you look at these universities, some students pay hundreds of dollars in fees,” he said.

The proposal is the fee will either be increased to $2 per credit hour or a $15 flat rate across all campuses.

The SDC came to a consensus to allot students the option of voting on which option they prefer and the opportunity to participate in a survey.

If moved to $2 per credit hour “it would really benefit part-time students because they’ll still be paying less than if we did the flat rate, but full-time students would be paying a lot more,” Wells said.

An example is if you take 12 credit hours, you would pay $24 in fees, he said.

If the $15 flat rate is chosen, then students will pay that amount regardless of the number of credit hours they are taking.

“Each has benefits and each has detriments and it affects different areas of students differently,” Wells said.

“It’s not just full-time versus part-time. It’s also on-campus versus online students,
SGA vice president at St. Philip’s Ravi Martinez said.

SGA treasurer at this college, Christopher Scoggins, leaned toward the $2 hourly fee because on-campus students are more likely to use the activity fee and be more likely to be involved in clubs and organizations.

Palo Alto SGA President Kytheranialynn Fambrough-Brown disagreed because it depends on if the online student chose online courses because they were working or so they could have an open schedule to have more time for activities on campus as she said she has done in the past.

The flier will include what the fee goes toward for each respective campus.

Northwest Vista fliers will be going up in the restrooms, hallways and billboards next to vending machines to get the word out, SGA Vice President Salah Ismail of Northwest Vista, said.

Vice president of SGA at this college Quintin Longoria, suggested the other colleges set up laptops for surveys.

“Blanket emails and just telling people on OrgSync is really out of the way for them, and they typically don’t feel the necessity to do it,” Longoria said of the survey.

Student trustee Emmanuel Nyong said students are more likely to check Canvas email because they see the notification when they check grades.

Fambrough-Brown said both a paper and online survey should be done so that the SGA officers can put the data from the paper survey into the OrgSync survey as well.

Scoggins said full-time students are more likely to take advantage of the student activity funds.

Fambrough-Brown asked the group if they knew if the number of full-time students has increased since the fast completion incentive plan has gone into effect.

The incentive plan is if a student takes 18 credit hours for fall and spring, they get three free summer courses, and if they take 24 credit hours, they get six free.

Nyong said it will take a few semesters to see if the number has increased.

The Student District Council represents the Alamo Colleges student body at a district level, Wells said.

“With our SGAs, we can represent the students at our campus, but if there’s issues that can’t be resolved on the campus or there are issues that are happening at more than one campus, we can come together and collaborate to figure out how we can fix them at a district level.”

Students will be able to vote and participate in the survey through Feb. 24.

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