With an entirely online quarter, many fees that students would normally pay have been waived. The most recent fee to be waived is the University Y fee. The fee of $180 has been refunded to students, and those without any other outstanding fines received that money as credit in their accounts. The University Y fee helps to cover the costs of the University Y Student Center.
The task of getting students a refund on the Y fee requires unanimity from student government organizations and from UW Tacoma administrators. The Associated Students of the University of Washington Tacoma and the Services and Activities Fee Committee both wrote letters urging Chancellor Mark Pagano and Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Mentha Hynes-Wilson to waive the fee for this quarter.
“The Services and Activities Fee Committee understands the difficulties and hardship that our communities are facing during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis,” said SAFC in their letter that they sent to Pagano. “We understand that for much of our population, a stable source of income has either been reduced, or halted all together. With that being said, the committee unanimously supports the decision to have the full amount of the University of Washington Tacoma YMCA fee of $180.00 refunded for the 2020 Spring Quarter.”
With the support of the student government and approval from the YMCA of Pierce and Kitsap Counties, UWT administrators then had to take the request to the University of Washington’s Board of Regents, which approves financial decisions such as tuition and fees. The regents subsequently accepted the request, and the University Y fee was then waived for students.
It should be noted that this fee is only being waived for spring quarter, and a similar process would have to go forward again in fall if circumstances remain the same.
With the refund going out, SAFC is using money in their reserves to cover the cost of the refund for all of the students.
“SAFC stepped forward early in the process and approved funds out of their reserve to cover the ongoing debt service on the building during spring 2020 so that this refund could be possible,” stated a letter signed by Pagano and Hynes-Wilson.