Student Life Reform: Financial Aid Could Get Big Lift

    UCSD’s pool of money for financial aid could get substantially larger if the UC Office of the President accepts the recommendation of a campus committee, which suggested an expansion of a university policy that funnels fees into student aid.

    Currently, the return-to-aid policy reserves 25 percent of every student’s quarterly registration and education fees for UCOP, which redistributes the money to the campus’ financial aid pool. The Student Regulations Review Committee recommended an expansion of the policy to include compulsory fees, which amounts to $400 per student.

    Return-to-aid allows needy students to receive some sort of reimbursement of their fees, according to Denis Shmidt, the A.S. Council representative to SRRC.

    “Lately, several UC campuses have assessed themselves fees in the hundreds of dollars per quarter,” he said. “Since these fees are not covered by financial aid or any other need-based aid services, they can become prohibitive to current or future students.”

    The lack of money at the state level pushed the committee to suggest other ways to support student financial aid.

    “When it’s understood that there are no other monies in the system — not through Pell Grants and Cal Grants, which have been historically weak — we recognized using return-to-aid in a different manner is a fair policy to put in place,” Valladolid said.

    SRRC specified to which compulsory fees to attach the return-to-aid mechanism: the Price Center expansion and RIMAC Arena fees, as well as activity fee charges for college councils, the Graduate Student Association and the A.S. Council.

    “I believe that most college-based fees are so small that there is no undue burden on the students and having a return-to-aid component on a miniscule fee would only increase the workload of the college’s business office and prevent college councils and organizations from serving the students by putting on programs and events,” Shmidt said.

    UCSD’s recommendations are consistent with all other undergraduate UC campuses, which also apply the policy to their fees, according to Clint Haden, UCOP’s director of undergraduate and graduate campus life.

    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $2505
    $5000
    Contributed
    Our Goal

    Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $2505
    $5000
    Contributed
    Our Goal