Fee hike 'tough for students'

TINA LAW
Last updated 05:00 03/10/2012

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A fee increase will make life harder for Canterbury University students next year, says students' association president Erin Jackson.

The university council has decided to raise domestic-student fees by 4 per cent next year.

It will also increase the compulsory student services levy from $635 to $699, but for the first time it will include free gym membership worth $120 a year.

The tuition fee increase is expected to increase university revenues by $2.4 million to $62.5m.

The university is looking at ways to make and save money after facing a drop in student numbers and increased costs after the earthquakes.

In August, vice-chancellor Rod Carr said the university was haemorrhaging $100,000 each business day.

Jackson said she did not think the fee increase would deter students from studying at the university because most other universities were also increasing their fees, but it would make things harder for students already facing increased living costs.

"It's probably harder to be a student in Christchurch than it ever has been, with increased rental payments, a shortage of part-time jobs and the student loan and allowance changes," she said.

The 4 per cent increase will mean undergraduate fees for arts, social science and education students will increase by $198 to $5152.

Engineering students will face a $249 increase to $6466, and business, accountancy and law fees will increase by $210 to $5453.

In a letter to students, Carr said he was mindful of the impact of fee increases on students, but he believed the university continued to provide good value for money.

He said the university was committed to improving the student experience, with new cafes and food outlets, the new licensed events centre and full remediation of the central library, which should be completed by February.

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- The Press

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