Student Fee Board Allocates Campus Rec Funding To Eliminate Fitness Center Membership Fees
The Student Fee Board split 7-5 to approve a fee allocation of $57 per student per semester to Campus Recreation, which will eliminate student membership fees for fitness centers on campus and continue to fund Campus Rec akin to previous student fee allocations.
“It would represent the highest increase in the student fee since the ’90s,” former GPSA President Kevin Horne (also an Onward State editor) said. Horne stated the goal of the increase is “admirable” but that he struggles with the notion of such a significant increase.
For comparison, the campus recreation fee was $11 this year. Current fitness memberships cost students $60 per semester or $110 per year.
Senior Director of Campus Recreation Laura Hall said if this fee allocation was not approved, Campus Rec would need to charge additional fees for areas that are currently free to students, namely the track at Rec Hall or various basketball courts on campus.
“Expenses for campus rec are getting more expensive to keep us up with national standards,” Hall said. “We’re not trying to be the the best in campus rec. We’re just trying to get ourselves up to par.”
Hall also mentioned faculty and staff are resistant to these changes in campus rec, as they will also now need to pay for access to campus rec facilities.
As for fairness, some members suggested the Board approve the full funding allocation to reduce student burden for those who don’t use certain amenities. Others, namely Horne, said it doesn’t need to be one or the other in terms of funding.
“We are balancing student need and student desire,” Horne said.
Students who pay for fitness membership by semester can look forward to a small discount next year, while those who spring for a full-year membership will see an increase.
Students who don’t already have fitness memberships will notice a somewhat steep increase in fees by the time the Board determines a finalized fee recommendation. This will likely be the largest year-to-year student fee increase in history.