Students at Rutgers University are demanding that the school reduce or reimburse tuition expenses after the New Jersey-based school announced that the majority of fall 2020 semester classes will be conducted online.
What are the details?
Rutgers, according to Fox News, recently announced it would freeze tuition instead of implementing a 3% increase as previously planned. The school opted to freeze tuition at its current level due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Shreya Patel is just one Rutgers student who is calling for the university to reduce its costs, considering most of the instruction will be through remote lessons.
In a petition, Patel wrote, "They are failing to recognize that just because we have a 'world-class education' does not mean that remote learning is a substitute for in-class learning and other on-campus services. What we pay for as part of our tuition is to be taught by a professor in a class setting where we can actively engage, ask questions, and interact with our peers."
"How could the current decision made not impact tuition if we cannot utilize resources to the fullest extent?" she wrote. "If there are strains on the university's ability to pay for expenses, why should students have to pay full price?"
At the time of this writing, Patel's petition has received more than 17,000 signatures in support of reducing tuition and other fees.
A spokesperson for the school told NJ.com that the instruction — remote or otherwise — is "provided by some of the finest scholars in American higher education."
"Tuition and fees are set at the minimum amount required to provide our 70,000 students with a world-class education," the spokesperson said. “A robust Rutgers education, whether delivered in a remote, hybrid or in-person fashion, is comprehensive and is provided by some of the finest scholars in American higher education."