Possible Changes to Student Activity Fees

Student Senate is in the process of dealing with a student proposal that would allocate part of the student activity fees to the HPER Center to better the campus’s health and wellness. This has struck controversy in the minds of some students who don’t frequent or utilize the HPER Center. Should non-athletes and those who don’t workout in the HPER have to pay into this avenue of their student fees? There are mixed feelings across campus as this proposition has begun to gain the attention of students. In regard to athlete opinion, a Wittenberg Cheerleader, Micaela Pohlabel, ’19, stated her stance on the proposition by pointing out that “even though I am directly involved with Witt athletics, I think there are still benefits that the whole campus community gains from updates and programs at the HPER Center, which could also be improved with more funding from our fees.”

Gary Williams, Wittenberg athletic and recreational director, summed up this issue well, according to Student Senate President, Zach Lough, ’17, “Gary sums up this issue perfectly in his argument that athletics is not really proposing this.”

According to Lough, the proposal is to allocate a certain amount of money per year to recreational fitness on campus from the student activity fee. This would not be an added fee to students, but an internal reallocation of funds on Student Senate’s part. Since this wouldn’t be an added fee, there are also non-athlete students who are in favor of this proposition as well. Derek Williams, ’18, stated that “I haven’t heard much about the issues, but from my understanding there shouldn’t be anything wrong with student’s fees contributing to the overall wellness and athletics of the campus.”

Student Senate would not follow through with reallocating money internally from the student activity fee unless it is certain that students overall would benefit from this fee, and that all students have the chance to access the programs and equipment that would be offered from it. Miranda Swaney, ’18, commented on the issue by saying, “as a student who doesn’t play a sport, I utilize the workout equipment in the HPER and think the allocation of fees including wellness and fitness would be beneficial. However, I can see where students who don’t utilize the HPER at all would feel that this allocation is perhaps not fair or necessary.”

At this moment, Student Senate needs to determine with certainty that students overall would benefit and be in favor of this proposal. Lough also stated that, “it is my hope that Student Senate will allow me to appoint a task force to research this cause more.” There’s more to come in the following weeks about this proposal, but for now the campus opinion on this issue ranges from against, in favor, to indifferent.

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