TSG asks Temple admin to issue partial fee refunds

Students normally pay a fee to support university-wide services, some of which are not available amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Temple Student Government called on the Temple University administration to partially refund students the university’s service fee in light of classes moving online amid the COVID-19 pandemic Friday.

The demand comes after Parliament passed a similar resolution, according to the announcement.

The university services fee helps fund computer equipment and technologies, student activities, facilities, and student health and treatment services, according to the Bursar’s website. The amount varies by how many credits a student takes each semester and can cost up to $445.

“Many of these resources funded by this fee are no longer available to students for the remainder of Spring 2020,” TSG wrote in an Instagram post.

Though classes have moved online, students are still in contact with their faculty and earning credits toward graduation, wrote Ray Betzner, a spokesperson for the university, in an email to The Temple News.

“Temple is reimbursing students for the things they are no longer using: residence halls, meal plans, parking, etc,” Betzner wrote. “On the other hand, student tuition supports their education and that continues.”

Additionally, students continue to utilize the services covered by their fees, like Charles Library’s online support for students and the continuation of Student Health Services, Betzner wrote.

“Those vital services supported by student fees are ongoing at a cost greater than anticipated, and need support,” he wrote.

Temple is currently partially refunding on-campus housing, parking passes and meal plans, The Temple News reported.

Recognizing that some of the university’s services, like Tuttleman Counseling, continue to operate, TSG has asked the university to determine which portion of the services fee is not currently being used and issue refunds as such, according to the announcement.

More than 99 percent of respondents to a TSG survey on the issue said they would be interested in a partial refund of the services fee, according to the announcement. Students around the country are making similar demands of their colleges, the Wall Street Journal reported.

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