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Cal State Trustees To Consider Fee Hike

Prospective SDSU students take a tour on campus from a student representative.
Ana Tintocalis
Prospective SDSU students take a tour on campus from a student representative.

One week after California State University students won a small tuition refund with the passage of Proposition 30, the system’s trustees will consider a slate of new fees.

Cal State Trustees To Consider Fee Hike
California State University trustees will consider levying fees aimed at moving students through the system on a four-year timeline.

Administrators said the charges trustees will consider on Tuesday will encourage students to graduate on time. They hope that will open up space for some of the more than 20,000 qualified applicants the system is turning away each year.


The trustees will consider three new fees. Under the plan, "super seniors," or students who have accumulated the equivalent of an extra academic year of credits, would be charged an additional $372 per unit for each additional course - or the same rate currently paid by out-of-state undergraduates. Those taking more than 18 units in any given semester - or more than one additional course beyond a standard full-time schedule - would be charged $182 per unit. Finally, students retaking a class would be charged $91 per unit. A typical CSU course is 3 units.

That last fee is the one that has Scott Silviera, president of Associated Students, Inc., at California State University San Marcos, most concerned. Students are only eligible to retake courses if they get a D+ or lower. Silviera said at San Marcos about 40 percent of the students retaking courses are freshmen and sophomores.

“Students go through a lot while in college, especially freshman and sophomore students who are adapting to the college environment," he said. "And the fact that you want to charge a student $91 per semester unit, I think, is a little unfair and it hurts a lot of time and it hurts their ability to even finish and get through these classes.”

Cal State administrators said most students will never pay the fees. Instead, the charges will be an incentive for students to stick to their graduation timelines.

Silviera also serves as the vice president for university affairs for the California State Student Association and will be at Tuesday's meeting. He said he understands the need to move students through the system more efficiently to open up class seats, but he'll suggest exempting freshmen and sophomores from the course repeat fee.