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VP Tagle: Unpaid council fees should not hamper enrolment

Ray Chen S. Bahinting | Editor-In-Chief

SILLIMAN UNIVERSITY (SU) Vice President for Finance and Administration (VPFA) Fe Marie Tagle pointed out in an interview last Nov. 13 that council fees cannot be made a condition for enrolment, hence, “enrolment should (proceed) regardless of student’s responsibilities in the council.”

Council fees include membership fees, fines or sanctions, etc. A memorandum from the VPFA was released on June 14, 2016 saying “nonpayment of these fees should not be made a basis for non-admission, non-promotion or non-issuance of clearance to a student.

Last Nov. 6, a Facebook from junior Economics major Dale Casocot said,“Student councils for the most part are useless and should be abolished.”Casocot narrated that
to be officially enrolled, he had to present a clearance and receipt to the college secretary to prove he had paid council fees and fines.

He said he was also made to buy six bottles of energy drink plus a pack of chocolate bars.

“The council is in open violation of established university policy and should be condemned for it,” he said.

Dean of Students Dr. Edna T. Calingacion clarified that collection of fines and other student council fees is allowed but should not hamper enrolment of a student.

She also said the fines should be “discussed and agreed upon by the general assembly of the college and not just by the officers themselves.”

However,  CBA student council governor, Jolina Sinco, said, they found it very effective to collect council fees by asking the dean’s office not to officially enrol students until they have paid the council fees. Moreover, she  clarified that out of the seven required activities of CBA, only one was organized and funded by the student council. The others were university activities that called for student participation and were not
made part of the council fee. Sinco said the energy drink and chocolate bars will be given to CBA athletes during the Intramurals.

Nonetheless, she said that they are not strict in imposing such collection scheme, especially among working students and scholars.

According to her, they accept promissory notes and payment on installment basis.

VPFA Tagle said the Administration is not aware if this practice in fact has been going on, but she said Administration has been reminding deans and student council officers against it.“We have to follow the procedure. We have been saying that it cannot be made as a condition, a step that could hamper enrolment in the university,” she said.

Tagle said violation of this policy could be subject to discipline, and any complaints regarding the matter should be done in writing. She said:The students should be brave enough to report these instances. Student can make the stand and say you cannot hold my enrolment because I haven’t paid my fees.”

Creative Way
Since council fees cannot be made a condition for enrolment, VPFA Tagle said student councils should be “creative in collecting the fees.”

Moreover, Tagle encouraged all students  to participate in college activities.

“It makes life more exciting in college to participate in these activities. And for this activity to be possible, you will have to support including giving your contributions for these activities.”

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