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Colleges Collide on Student Union Fee Problem

 

   
 
   
 
A problem on the division of student union fee occurred during the two Budget Committee meetings held on April 10th and 18th due to the difference of opinion among colleges. The College of Engineering added fuel to the fire by posting slanders both online and offline. The problem still hasn’t been settled yet and this brought distrust on the college student councils among many students.

The student union fee is the optional fee of 8,000 won that comes along with the tuition. The total number of students and the fee are multiplied and given to the Student Council by the Student Service Center after several deliberations on the budget plan. For this semester, a total of 6,856 students paid up, which meant a total of 54 million won was to be given to the Student Council.

However, several problems occurred during the deliberation meetings. The first problem was that meeting regulations of Budget Committee was not properly established. This led to problems in making decisions. Because there were no specific regulations on reaching into conclusions, the Student Council had a difficulty in making a deliberation. In the first meeting held on April 10th, every agenda was unanimously passed. The trouble occurred in the second meeting held after 8 days. The arguments on dividing student union fee went on for several hours. No certain settlement could be made because each college had its own opinion. The Student Council suggested passing the agenda if two thirds of the party agreed, but the student council members of the Business College, Engineering College and College of Natural Science did not comply with the Student Council’s suggestion and left the meeting. The absence of detailed meeting regulations brought a discord among colleges.

The College of Pharmacy is the smallest in the scale of students. If the fee is divided according to the number of students, the College of Pharmacy would have trouble in operating its council. A representative of the College of Pharmacy said, “The basic fee must be guaranteed for students so that they can enjoy their school life through activities planned by our council.” The Student Council seems to have no definite solution to the problem. Park Woong-jin, the Vice President of the Student Council, said, “It seems both ways have their pros and cons. We will listen to all councils’ opinions and make a right decision.”

Some colleges criticized the inappropriate behavior and preposterous budget appropriation of the College of Engineering. During the deliberation meetings, the College of Engineering made a statement that they are going to cut the hands of those who lay a hand on ‘their’ money. For the budget plan, they listed dryer and hair curler for 1.6 million won, sports equipment for 1.1 million won and lunch fee for 4.8 million won. A student of English Language and Literature, Kim Ye-eun, responded to such news as “It could seem like a loss for the College of Engineering to divide the student union fee according to the colleges, but they have to see the problem in a bigger picture.”

The conflict still has not been resolved yet. The inconvenience of such problem will directly affect the students. Kim Tae-hyun of Food Science and Biotechnology major expressed his concern by saying, “If the Student Council does not make a solution soon, students will not pay the student union fee for the next semester. The bad cycle will continue on.”

The money that comes from each student’s pocket must be used for the welfare of students. The students will lose trust in every council if such problem occurs again. The Student Council is already losing trust due to other issues that outraged many students such as the booking bus problem for student reserve forces. What the Student Council must put first in their priority is earning the trust of students again.

 

 

 

 

Kim You-jeong  youjeong719@dongguk.edu

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