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Students plan protest demanding CSU trustees eliminate new 'success fees'

A CSU spokesman says the chancellor has given the final approval for “success fees” at nine Cal State campuses.
A CSU spokesman says the chancellor has given the final approval for “success fees” at nine Cal State campuses. Anibal Ortiz

Students at several California State University campuses are crying foul as their campuses go about implementing “success fees” as high as $630 per semester, over and above student tuition and other fees.

“We’re asking the trustees to basically not to support any student success fees and to roll back any current ones,” said Cal State Dominguez Hills student Robert DeWitz.

His campus is considering a $560 yearly “success fee” for students.

Administrators began approving the fees in 2011, in the middle of huge state cuts to education funding that forced many campuses to cut programs. At the same time, administrators raised student tuition at California’s public universities. Last year Governor Jerry Brown proposed a tuition freeze as he campaigned for a statewide tax increase to fund public education.

“Our budget was cut several hundred million dollars in several years during the recession. Our campuses were trying to keep the doors open,” said CSU spokesman Mike Uhlenkamp.

RELATEDTuition is frozen, but CSU Fullerton students face new campus fees

The chancellor, he said, has given the final approval to “success fees” at Cal State campuses including those in Long Beach, Los Angeles, Northridge, Fullerton, Pomona, and San Bernardino.

The CSU Chancellor's Office said these are the "success fees" approved so far:

  • CSU East Bay $240
  • CSU Long Beach $267
  • CSU Los Angeles $244
  • CSU Northridge $212
  • CSU Fullerton $181
  • Cal Poly Pomona $222
  • CSU San Bernardino $162
  • San Jose State $630
  • Cal Poly San Luis Obispo $200
  • San Diego State $50

“I believe that they undermine Governor Jerry Brown’s promise of a four year freeze,” DeWitz said of the student fees.

He said dozens of students plan to protest the fees at the CSU trustees meeting on Wednesday in Long Beach. They’re modeling their actions on the efforts of students at Sonoma State University, where administrators withdrew a proposed  $500 yearly fee after student protests and online petitions.

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