Tuition changes are coming

College updates tuition payment process for winter semester

By Alexandra Lachine  and Christian Hollis Editor-in-Chief and News Editor

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News Editor Lauren Webb, a Nursing major, is preparing to register for Winter semester in the Registration Center at McDowell. Students will see improvment in the online payment portion of WebAdvisor, updating and simplifying the process. Changes to the tuition payment policies are meant to simplify registration and reduce wait lists. (Photo by Christian Hollis, News Editor)

Winter registration is coming, beginning promptly Oct. 28 at 9 a.m. to be exact. Expect to see some changes when logging into WebAdvisor, particularly to the way tuition is paid.
Simply put, students no longer have payment deadlines but now have three business days to either pay their tuition in full or set up a Tuition Payment Plan (for a $30 fee).

“The big thing that we’re doing right now with the payment plan is an upgrade. We have been in an older version of it that is not a user or student friendly experience…all of this is happening very quickly and we don’t want students to feel off-guard,” explained Emily Bressler, Student Accounts Manager.

Thanks to the college’s partnership with Nelnet, payment plans are also being changed from the previous five payments to six payments, lowering the costs students have to pay each month, as well as granting students longer time to pay their tuition. Ultimately, this makes college more affordable and reasonable rather than paying out of pocket up front and taking longer to get back on your feet financially.

The college still accepts cash, checks, money orders, VISA, MasterCard, American Express and Discover to cover costs, and financial aid in the form of grants and scholarships is unaffected by the upgrade.

Payment plan benefits include easy online enrollment, flexible options suited for you and no interest. Students who register early for winter semester and use the payment plan are only required to place a 10 or 20 percent down payment. For the fall 2018 semester, when registration begins in March, there will be options of up to six payments, depending on the time when students register for classes.

Another major benefit to this change will be evident through reduced wait-listing. During the registration period for the fall 2017 semester, there were many students who registered early in March. With the first payment deadline in July, anyone who registered early and didn’t pay, occupied a spot in the class up until quite recently, resulting in lengthy wait lists.

Associate Dean of Enrollment Services, Catherine McCardell, explained the unnecessary stresses caused by the registration period for fall this year.

“There were a lot of people getting dropped…where they weren’t paying and they were holding seats for people that really would pay, and so that was causing problems with our scheduling,” said McCardell.

The college has been incredibly transparent in introducing this upgrade to students, promoting the change at Schooldaze and on campus in the bustling McDowell Center through informative brochures.

“We’re going to be doing another marketing campaign for fall,” said Bressler about continuing to inform students of the payment upgrade and their options.

For many students, this upgrade is helping them get the classes they want at the times they want. “It is a good idea because I know it’s really hard to get the classes that you want if you don’t register the exact day they come out, I know it’s really difficult for middle of the day classes.”said Marissa Letizio, an Elementary Education major.

Everyone knows how hectic college life can be, but figuring out and understanding the options you have to pay for college doesn’t have to be. With these changes, students will know all of their options while registering for classes and be able to have more convenient schedules and the grace of a more accommodating payment plan.