May 22, 2012

Student Contribution Comes Out on Top in Trinity’s Fees Vote

Ronan Costello
Editor

The preferred option of the majority of Trinity students in USI’s online fees poll is the student contribution. The student contribution narrowly won the favour of Trinity voters, just beating out a student loan scheme.

Turnout in the poll increased significantly on the previous preferendum, with 1879 votes cast. Students had been logging into www.usi.ie all week to voice their preference for how third level education should be funded.

TCDSU President Ryan Bartlett released the following statement on the Trinity results:

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“First, it was great to see so many Trinity students engage in this process at a time of year when their sole focus is generally on exams. This was the highest turnout for a referendum that wasn’t attached to a sabbatical election in four years.

As for the result itself, Trinity students have recognised the strains on the current system and demonstrated their willingness to contribute to the quality of third level education. However, while it’s important to ensure that we maintain the quality of the education being provided, we also have to ensure that we have an equitable system for paying the student contribution so that it doesn’t place an unfair burden on students. To that end, we have worked all year to ensure that the contribution can be paid in two installments. This is expected to be confirmed soon by College Board.

While this means that the Trinity delegation at USI Special Congress will be voting for the student contribution as their first preference in the vote on what USI’s new position on fees should be, it’s notable that students also considered a student loan scheme. This clearly shows that many students would appreciate a mechanism for deferring payments of the student contribution.

The next step is to take these results and make a policy document with which to lobby government.”

See full list of results below:

 

Count Option

1879

Total Valid Poll

940

Quota

Round 1

341

Graduate tax

385

One hundred percent Exchequer funded

46

One hundred percent upfront fees

556

Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)

478

Student loan scheme

73

None of the above

“One hundred percent upfront fees” was eliminated.

Round 2

348

Graduate tax

388

One hundred percent Exchequer funded

573

Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)

493

Student loan scheme

76

None of the above

“None of the above” was eliminated.

Round 3

362

Graduate tax

410

One hundred percent Exchequer funded

593

Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)

506

Student loan scheme

“Graduate tax” was eliminated.

Round 4

451

One hundred percent Exchequer funded

712

Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)

699

Student loan scheme

“One hundred percent Exchequer funded” was eliminated.

Round 5

1028

Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)

805

Student loan scheme

“Student contribution / Registration fee (Currently €2,250)” has exceeded the quota and is declared the winner.

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