This article is the first of a series.
Deliberations and consultations are currently being done in line with the imminent tuition fee increase for next academic year (AY). The Multi-Sectoral Committee on Student Fees (MSCSF), a consultative body, recently completed its sessions to come up with a tuition fee increase proposal. The MSCSF is composed of representatives from the administration, student body, parents’ organization, and faculty and employee associations. After the consultations, the Board of Trustees is then tasked to weigh in on the proposal of the MSCSF and ultimately decide on the percentage of tuition fee increase to be implemented for AY 2016-2017.
In line with this, we at The LaSallian aim to provide the student body with a breakdown of the tuition and miscellaneous fees paid for by students every term.
The National Service Training Program (NSTP) fee is delegated to the NSTP program of the University, which is currently comprised of Civic Welfare Training Service and Literacy Training Service. The Reserve Officers’
Training Corps was also under this umbrella in the past, but is currently facing evaluation this AY.
The NSTP fee is used by the Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA). As mandated by Republic Act 9163, 70 percent of the amount from NSTP fees paid by students are allocated to COSCA for operational costs. NSTP Team Leader and Special Projects Coordinator Carl Fernandez explains that the remaining 30 percent is utilized for administrative costs by the University, as per the aforementioned law.
Furthermore, Fernandez clarifies that the reason why students from different colleges pay varying amounts for the NSTP Fee is that it is pegged to the tuition fee per unit amount set by the University.
Social Action Fee
The Social Action Fee is also allocated to COSCA. Program Manager for Community Development and Engagement Joseph Rosal affirms that the fee is utilized for COSCA’s community engagement projects. He elaborates that the projects of COSCA are in line with one key resolve area (KRA) stipulated in the University President’s strategic direction. In particular, COSCA falls under KRA 5: Community that values talents and is socially relevant.
Rosal mentions that COSCA’s operations are generally divided into three, namely, curriculum-based (subject-based community engagement), co-curriculum-based (such as outreach programs conducted by student organizations), and internationalization. “All of this, of course, comes with a cost, and it’s taken primarily from the Social Action Fund,” highlights Rosal.
Student Services Fee
According to Dean of Student Affairs (DSA) Fritzie De Vera, the student services fee is used for the funds for the University Student Government (USG), the Council of Student Organizations (CSO), and the media publications budget. “These groups have specific budgets which they use as part of their operational funds,” she explains.
The publications are separate from student activities. University Registrar Dr. Voltaire Mistades describes, “When I was DSA, by virtue of the Campus Journalism Act, if I remember it correctly, all funds collected under the heading [of] Publication Fee, [all of that] goes to the operations of the publications.” Each of the six media organizations, The LaSallian included, submits a proposed budget to the Director of the Student Media Office (SMO). “Each unit—USG, CSO, and SMO—requests for the budget, and then the DSA summarizes the requests and allocates the budgets to the different units,” he adds.
The Achiever’s Fund is utilized by the Office of the DSA. De Vera explains that the fund is used for certain groups under the Culture and Arts Office, the Office of Sports Development, the CSO, and the La Salle Debate Society, among others. Additionally, the fund is also used to “provide loans for entrepreneurial students, which they can use to initially provide capital for their business ventures,” De Vera states.
Student Materials and Forms
The fees from Student Materials and Forms are allocated to the Office of the University Registrar. Dr. Mistades shares, “For the exam booklet [and] the answer sheet, there is a fund that we request from the General Fund of the University.”
On the other hand, for syllabi typically distributed at the start of the term, when the different academic departments go to the mimeographing office, the request placed indicates that the costs will be deducted from a central fund in the University where “all charges [of] syllabus printing are charged,” illustrates Dr. Mistades.