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referendum #3|special election fall 2012

Graduate Student Activities Fee Referendum

In recent years, the Student Activities Fee funding available to support the student experience has been increasingly constrained resulting in less resources to support campus programming, Student Government-recognized organizations, and campus-wide initiatives, specific and non-specific to graduate students.

Thirty percent of the fee supports programming such as Spring & Fall concerts, Spring Carnival, Scotch 'n' Soda shows, WRCT's radio programming, The Tartan, Emergency Medical Services, TEDx, a capella concerts, countless cultural organizations, as well as many special interest groups, some of which are graduate student specific. Forty-five percent supports graduate student specific programming including travel and research grants, campus projects like bike racks and campus maps, healthy initiatives support like subsidized Group Xfitness passes, and social programming, such as wine and beer tastings in addition to subsidized tickets to sport games and theatrical performances. Graduate students in their respective departments manage the remaining twenty-five percent.

There has been a dramatic shift in the makeup/composition of the graduate student body over the last several years with new programs being added, an influx of Master’s students, and an increase in accelerated Master’s students. In order to better gauge the needs of this evolving constituency, the Student Body Vice President for Finance, in consultation with the Student Government Executive Committee, is presenting this referendum to the graduate student community in order to provide a forum to express graduate student needs, so Student Government can better serve you.

The proposal recommends a 25% increase in the Student Activities Fee to the Board of Trustees, who reviews and approves fees for students. Beginning in the 2013- 2014 academic year, the Activities Fee as proposed would increase from $97 per semester to $121 per semester, enabling $231,000 of additional resources to be available to the Carnegie Mellon graduate student community.

Do you support recommending a 25% increase in the Graduate Student Activities Fee to provide additional funds for graduate student programing, Student Government-recognized organizations, and other extracurricular events and activities on campus?