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September 28, 2009 | by  | in News |
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Double or nothing: Fees go up, services levy almost double. Kia ora, poorness, kia ora.

Victoria University has agreed to increase fees by 5% and almost double its Student Services Levy for the 2010 academic year.

The decision was made during a heated and difficult meeting of the University Council last Monday.

Government-funded honours and postgraduate fees will also increase by $500.

Victoria’s Student Services Levy will also increase to $510 for domestic students and $326 for distance students, regardless of whether they are part or full-time. Students this year paid four different levies for a commutative total of $275.60.

In addition, Victoria University will be introducing a late application fee. All applications to study after 10 February for the first trimester, and 25 June for the second trimester will be charged $120. First year International students will be exempt.

University Chancellor, Emeritus Professor Tim Beaglehole, said that although the Council increased the fees with great reluctance, the changes were necessary.

“The decision for a fees increase is made with reluctance, but we need to ensure that Victoria is a successful university for both current and future students,” he said.

Professor Beaglehole noted the Student Services Levy increase would allow Victoria to continue offering students a wide range of support services.

“It is essential that we continue to provide students support services that assist them to complete their studies, to deal with health and financial issues, to help provide accommodation and to assist with the transition from study to their careers.”

Student University Council Representative and NZUSA Co-President Jordan King voiced his unhappiness with the levy rise during the meeting.

“You’re absolutely doubling it in one year. It’s unfair,” King said during the meeting.

Both King and VUWSA President Jasmine Freemantle voted against the fee and levy increase, but only King voted against the Late Application Fee.

Freemantle said that while VUWSA had always put strong arguments forward against fee increases, it supported elements of the new services levy, particularly the new flat charge.

“Part-time students have the tendency to be as heavy users, if not more so, than full time students [of student services],” she said.

But Freemantle said the decision to vote in favour of the late application fee was a way of curbing the effects of managed enrolment.

“Certainly something like a late application fee from VUWSA’s perspective is far more appropriate than simply limiting in other ways that students can attend.”

The tough economic climate has meant a number of universities have had to increase their services levy in addition to fees.

Canterbury University voted this month to increase its services levy from $80 to $600 for 2010. Massey University also announced its services levy will reach $200, almost double that of last year, and Waikato University announced a 40% increase on its $100 levy.

What you paid this year if you’re a full-time Internal Student:

$150.00 Student Services Levy
$81.60 Amenities Levy
$20.00 Technology Fee
$24.00 Student Assistance (Hardship) Levy

Grand total = $275.60

What you’ll pay next year regardless of whether you’re a full or part time student:
$510.00 Student Services Levy

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  1. Reluctance or no, your university has made a habit of raising fees by the maximum five percent literally every year since 2006. They even passed a resolution back then explicitly endorsing that as council policy (details ON MY BLOG).

    Admittedly Vice-Chancellor Walsh says it’s no longer in effect, but it’s hard to see the difference.

    Just thought I’d throw that little tidbit out there.

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