Missouri Western’s low computer lab fees has caused some to question whether students are being given the tools needed for their education. With the advancement of technology, perhaps a budget change could be in store to effusively help students’ academic success.
College campuses across the country typically have set a $10 dollar per credit fee for their students while the price is nearly $6 dollars less at Western. Setting the fee this high allows for the Universities to be able to repair, set up and upgrade software that will be beneficial to their students. These students will have the opportunity to access the certain tools they need to be successful in their classrooms.
According to Dean and Executive Director of Western Institute Gordon Mapley, when it comes to computing fees Western is the cheapest in the MIAA. Schools such as Lindenwood and Northwest Missouri State have technology fees over four times as much as Western.
Mapley talked about his solution to helping Western improve on its technology around campus.
“A typical technology fee among sister schools is $10 per credit”, Mapley said. “If MWSU had a $10 per credit technology fee, an additional $600,000 would be generated annually. This would allow the campus to address computer technology needs, such as the aging infrastructure and equipment used for classroom presentations and to partially cover computer lab expenses that are currently charged to the general university budget.”
Instructional Technology Director Cori Criger said Western is aware of the technology changes since the 90s and are wanting to update the technology on campus.
“When you think about what was done in the 90s and what we support now there’s really not funding for a lot of things,” Criger said. “We have to do a lot of working around and making stuff work. We try to be as efficient as we possibly can be.”
Vice President of Financial Planning Cale Fessler talked about plans for the future if an event like the AC failures in Murphy last semester were to happen again.
“We had some worries relative to the potential of any damage to those labs”, Fessler said. “So we did some things to try to keep air flow moving and to reduce some of the humidity. As I recall we didn’t have permanent damage to the machines of any kind. They weren’t damaged such that we had to replace them.””