ASWSU passes payment plan resolutions for first-gen students

Two new resolutions pass in hope of benefiting first-generation students

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Oluwanifemi Shola-Dare, ASWSU Senator, shows concern for first-generation students who are unable to pay for tuition, as WSU does not have a payment plan option for these students during the ASWSU meeting on Wednesday evening, at the CUB. Lack of payment plans often result in late fees starting at 3 percent for these students.

ASWSU senators approved two resolutions regarding a tuition payment plan and open-source textbooks Wednesday at the senate meeting. 

ASWSU Senator Oluwanifemi Shola-Dare authored a resolution to create a tuition payment plan for students at WSU.

About 40 percent of students at WSU are first-generation, according to the resolution. First-generation students often have more unmet financial needs in comparison to other students who are not first-generation.

Institutions like Pennsylvania State University and Cornell University allow students to pay in installments, according to the resolution. WSU students, on the other hand, can accrue fees over time if they have not paid for their tuition and fees in full.

Shola-Dare said she could resonate with the resolution because she is an international student herself.

“I’ll probably take it upon myself to reach out to the Division of Student Affairs and [Student] Financial Services to see how we can get this up and move forward,” she said.

ASWSU Senator Donavyn Velez-Fucal co-authored a resolution to draft a bill that would allow open-source textbooks for 100-level UCORE courses.

“It’s just cheaper to access and use for students”

Donavyn Velez-Fucal

Textbook costs have increased over time, according to the resolution, which causes a financial worry for students. This is because they have to pay for tuition as well as room and board.

Velez-Fucal said this worry was brought to their attention by a student who also helped draft the legislation.

“It’s just cheaper to access and use for students,” he said. “That way, first-year students and just students in general that are taking classes don’t have to pay $100, $200, $300 for a textbook.”

The senate also approved funding for a Chinese New Year Festival hosted by the Chinese Students and Scholars Association at WSU.

Zhuocheng Huang, president of the CSSA at WSU, said they wanted to bring the feeling of home closer for those who are not able to return as often.

Sparkle Watts, vice president of Black Student Union, said a tribute to Kobe Bryant is in the works.

“The message that we’re trying to get across is just kind of the impact that black communities feel when we lose those idols,” Watts said. “We idolize these people so much that we forget that bad things can happen to them.”