A new bill passed by the IU Student Government Congress encourages IU administration to eliminate add/drop fees for classes.
“Students should be able to pick the courses that best fit their needs and not be penalized for wanting to get the most out of their education,” Education Committee Chair and sophomore Rachel Aranyi said.
The add/drop fee is what students have to pay when they alter their schedules after already registering their classes.
IU's Student Central website lists the fee for adding or dropping classes as $8.60 for each day a student makes a schedule change starting two business days after the day they register for the term.
Aranyi said the fee for switching classes was originally created when IU did not have a computer system. At the time, students would have to call in and someone would change their schedule by hand. Therefore, the fee originally covered a service that is no longer necessary, Aranyi said.
The bill recently passed IUSG Congress and now gives the executive branch permission to run a petition collecting signatures in order to gauge student support, she said.
IUSG Speaker and third year law student Andrew Ireland said the organization is a student advocacy body for issues such as cost reduction, but it has no administrative power to put this policy into effect. IU administration must approve legislation passed by IUSG Congress for it to be implemented.
Ireland said the cost of tuition is already high.
"We want to take this barrier down," he said.
IU sophomore Kiley Gardner said the add/drop fees had always bothered her.She said she's been charged with these fees and wondered what they were going toward.
“I pay these fees myself because I pay for my own college,” Gardner said.
Ireland said the IUSG Congress Education Committee has recently proposed three separate bills dealing with cost reductions.
One of the bills covers ending tuition costs relating to internships and implementing internship credit. Ireland said IU does not dedicate any money toward internships, but schools within IU such as the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs require internship credit for most of their programs.
Ireland said most students have to take unpaid internships, which leads to financial barriers and future debt. The Education Committee also proposed and recently passed a bill to eliminate transcript fees, he said.
He said IU charges a substantial amount of money for receiving transcripts. He said this can limit the number of applications students sent to potential employers.