I could not afford to live on campus for my senior year. I know there are others who have had the same problem or are worse off. However, Oswego State does not make it easy for off-campus students. They expect students to pay more, despite some of them being forced to move off campus because they have already spent a great majority of their money and can no longer afford all the fees the university has forced on them.
Even if a student should attempt to be exempt from these fees, there is a very tiny chance that will happen. When I tried to, I was told that my family’s medical expenses should not hinder what I can and cannot afford or that I could take out more loans.
Especially, the athletic fee. The rest of the students have to pay for athletes to use the facilities? And students have to pay for games they do not go to? That is ridiculous. I go to hockey games and that is it. I do not even go to all of them. I would rather pay individually than pay the full athletic fee. Why should I pay to go to games I do not end up attending, especially if I have to live off campus because of all the ridiculous fees? If the school is going to force us to pay, they should offer the gym for free, since we pay for the athletes to use a gym for free.
Speaking of the gym membership, for those who live on campus, the rate is $105 for a year. For commuters, it is $115, as long as you stayed on campus for more than four semesters. Sure, $10 is not much, but little things like that add up.
Presidential scholarships, which are given, according to the Oswego State website, for “academic excellence” are cut in half because a student is not giving the university all of their money to live on campus anymore. You can find this in microscopic print on Oswego State’s website. A student who cannot afford to stay on campus must be punished further. So much for being rewarded for being a good student.
I know they do not have to give us a scholarship, that it is a kindness. But how is it fair to modify it because a student has to move off campus? What if the student relies on that scholarship to help with tuition costs?
As I wrote about in a previous article, commuter parking is an absolute nightmare. A commuter pays the same amount for parking in limited parking lots for a year as someone who lives on campus. That is $100 to get kicked off campus by midnight. God forbid you want to be in the library passed midnight or have to work late.
Living off campus is great though.
There is more independence and better learning experiences. Instead of paying roughly $10,000 a semester to share a room with one or two people, a bathroom with a floor of people and a kitchen with an entire building, a student can pay half that for a full year. They can have their own room, a bathroom they do not need to share, except with a couple close friends, and a kitchen they can use whenever they want. There is no waiting hours for a washing machine or dryer. It is pretty great.
Living off campus gives students the opportunity to learn skills they will need when they leave college. Like paying rent, cable and keeping up a house. It is pretty great being able to rely on nobody but yourself. Also, some landlords allow more than just fish for pets.
I am writing this hoping administration will take notice of what they are doing to some of their students. There are a lot of fees that are not totally necessary to force on students and should be looked over to make sure students are not going bankrupt by living on campus or by paying these absurd fees.