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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Tuition isn’t the only cost of attending the UA

Tuition isn’t the only cost of entry to the UA. Look a little closer at the fine print and an incoming freshman will notice a myriad of fees tacked onto the UA’s price of attendance.

The mandatory fees, paid each semester by every student, include the Student Services Fee and the Arizona Financial Aid Trust Fee.

The latter of the two provides state-based financial aid to students who “demonstrate a clear need for financial aid by virtue of their special circumstances,” or who are “underrepresented in the university population,” according to the Bursar’s Office website. The fee was approved through student referenda on campuses of Arizona universities and began in the fall semester of 1990.

There are fees that students can opt out of each semester, such as the Recreation Center Bond Retirement Fee, Recreation Center Program Fee, Student Media Fee and Wildcat Events Board Fee, according to the Bursar’s Office website.

To opt out, students must submit a request for exception to the respective department or office where the fee belongs.

READ: Athletics ‘hitting the pause button’ on proposed athletic fee

The fees are “generally designed to fit a need to better serve students or provide additional support,” wrote Kasey Urquidez, vice president of Enrollment Management & Student Affairs Advancement, in an email. Some fees have to be approved by the Arizona Board of Regents, depending on the fee’s cost.

“No fees are charged without a full review and close look at student benefits overall,” Urquidez wrote.

Most of the costs of the fees have not changed, according to Urquidez.

Students can use their financial aid to cover the fees, according to Rebekah Hoppel Salcedo, director of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

Some fees cover different areas within the one fee, such as the mandatory Information Technology/Library Fee. Fifty-eight percent of the fee goes to Information Technology while the rest goes to the UA library system, according to the Bursar’s Office website.

The funds from this portion of the fee go toward increasing access to resources like databases and e-books, expanding library hours, and 3D printing and 3D scanning services, according to Robyn Huff-Eibl, a team leader for Access and Information Services.

“The Library Student Fee covers a variety of services that students have requested over the years,” Huff-Eibl wrote in an email. “We engage and actively meet with the students to ensure our data and student needs are in alignment.”

Another fee that goes to different areas is the Health and Recreation Fee, which goes to both Campus Recreation and Campus Health Service.

The fee, $150 per semester paid by all students, can be refunded to students that are off campus for a semester if they submit requests for exceptions to the department of Campus Recreation. Fifty-three percent of the fee goes to Campus Health while 47 percent goes to Campus Recreation.

The fee covers the cost of access to campus recreation facilities so students do not have to pay a membership fee for the Student Recreation Center. It also funds facility maintenance, equipment and the software system, and pays for the salary of the majority of student staff for Campus Recreation, according to John Lloyd, one of the two interim associate directors for Campus Recreation.

There are some fees that only have to be paid once, like the Freshman Fee. What the Freshman Fee—a $10 fee that every student pays each semester of their freshman year—goes toward depends on a committee comprised of faculty and students that then makes recommendations to the vice president of Student Affairs, according to the Bursar’s Office website.

The fee is used to support programs and services for first-year students and their success at the university.

Follow Ava Garcia on Twitter. 

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