NYS Exposed: SUNY's mandatory fees

May 09, 2018 06:31 AM

Tonight there are thousands of high school seniors on a waiting list, waiting to get that call from the college they want. And there are just as many parents wondering, how are we going to pay for it? 

For a month, News10NBC has been investigating what some colleges are going to charge you. 

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Tuition is one thing. But look at your college bill. There are all kinds of fees you have to pay and those charges are not covered by tuition assistance. That money comes is straight out of your pocket.  

And at SUNY, those fees are mandatory. SUNY says they pay for things that are considered outside of the college's main education mission, things like sports. The average total fees at SUNY are $1,704.

The total amount of fees at the College at Brockport is $1,458.

Dave Mihalyov, Chief Communications Office, College at Brockport: We receive approximately $9 million less per year from New York State than we did a decade ago. So we have to make that money up in other ways. 

Most of the SUNY fees are used or could be used by every student, things like the health fee, transportation fee or student activity fee. 
But News10NBC found one SUNY fee that every student has to pay but only a select few get to use and the fee is hundreds of dollars every year. 
Brean: What could that pay for you?

Marisa Groom, College at Brockport Sophmore: My credit card bill.

Brean: Rent?

Groom: Yeah.

Brean: Or food?

Groom: Yes.

"Uh, the books I need," said Taylor VanOrden, a junior at the College at Brockport.

So I contacted all the SUNY schools in the Rochester area. I even went to the SUNY Board of Trustees meeting last week in Morrisville where some of the trustees voiced the same concern. 
Marc Cohen, President SUNY Student Assembly: 
I don't believe there's enough transparency as to where these fees are going.

In my investigation on News10NBC at 11p.m., I'll break down this unique fee and how much is coming out of your pocket. Plus, I press the SUNY Chief Financial Officer on why they have a mandatory fee that every student pays, but only a select few use.


Daniella Genovese

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