The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Sophomore LHP Ryan Prager (18) celebrates getting the last strikeout during A&Ms games against Vanderbilt on Friday, April 11, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Ring Day run rule
April 12, 2024
Sophomore LHP Ryan Prager (18) celebrates getting the last strikeout during A&Ms games against Vanderbilt on Friday, April 11, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Ring Day run rule
April 12, 2024
Junior G Wade Taylor IV (4) covers his face after a missed point during Texas A&Ms game against Arkansas on Feb. 20, 2024 at Reed Arena. (Jaime Rowe/The Battalion)
When it rains, it pours
February 24, 2024
Ali Camarillo (2) waiting to see if he got the out during Texas A&Ms game against UIW on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024 at Olsen Field. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Four for four
February 20, 2024
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Dr. Weston Porter (top left) and researchers from the breast cancer lab. (Photo courtesy of Dr. Weston Porter)
New A&M research initiative provides cutting-edge cancer treatments
J.M. Wise, News Reporter • April 8, 2024

It has been 20 months since Michelle Pozzi, Ph.D, of Texas A&M’s Biochemistry and Biophysics department was diagnosed with cancer. However,...

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Sophomore LHP Ryan Prager (18) celebrates getting the last strikeout during A&Ms games against Vanderbilt on Friday, April 11, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Ring Day run rule
Neil Jhurani, Sports Writer • April 12, 2024

It was Ring Day in Aggieland when No. 3 Texas A&M faced off against No. 6 Vanderbilt on Friday night in the first game of a three-game set. The...

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Students, residents commemorates Eid Al-Fitr
Lasan Ukwatta Liyanage, Life & Arts Writer • April 11, 2024

This year's Eid Al-Fitr celebration, hosted by Texas A&M’s Muslim Student Association, or MSA, drew over 1,500 attendees on Wednesday,...

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Student housing located right outside off campus boundaries on George Bush Drive. 
Guest Commentary: An open letter to City Hall
Ben Crockett, Guest Contributor • April 11, 2024

City Council, As representatives of the Texas Aggie Classes of 2024, 2025, 2026 and 2027, we write to you today to urge a reconsideration...

Many problems with proposed fee increase

After the $9 per credit hour tuition increase that went into effect in January, students may have stifled their complaints with the hope that they had seen the end of escalating tuition bills, at least for their time at Texas A&M.
Unfortunately, it may only be the beginning.
On Jan. 27, University President Robert M. Gates announced a proposal to increase tuition in the fall by 21 percent, totaling about $300 more for a 14-hour semester.
When the motivations and reasoning behind the proposed tuition increase are examined, it seems obvious that faulty logic and ignorant blind-sightedness toward Vision 2020 are at the root of the problem.
The additional tuition funds would mostly be put toward increasing the number of faculty and encouraging diversity, but a large chunk of it will go toward scholarships, the foremost one a “Regent Scholar Program.” The program guarantees $5,000 a year for students who are first generation college students and whose parents make less than $40,000 annually, according to The Houston Chronicle.
While the scholarship does provide substantial relief for some, it cuts off others who may need scholarships just as badly, granting preference based on factors that one cannot control. Many students who come from middle class families do not qualify for need-based scholarships but still struggle to pay tuition and are now left with few options. The $2.8 million allotted to Regent Scholar students would better serve the majority by lessening the tuition burden for all.
In his Jan. 27 presentation, Gates stated that the University’s main areas of focus would be faculty, students, diversity and space. Closer examination of these admirable goals reveals the money spent on diversity initiatives could be invested in the hiring of faculty.
Diversity, in theory, is not a bad thing. It is the skewed definition that Gates and other administrators have of diversity that creates a problem for the students whose money goes to pay for the recruitment of a designated racial group. True diversity through majors, hometowns, cultures, talents and backgrounds is favorable to all. Racial diversity should be the overflow of that, not the target.
Gates attempted to soften the blow of the increase by pointing out that 70 percent of A&M students receive some form of financial aid. This fact only confirms the dramatic effect the increased tuition would have. If 70 percent of students already need financial aid to pay their tuition and bills, the escalating prices will only worsen the problem. The majority of those who receive financial aid do so in the form of student loans. The tuition increase would add more debt to be paid off, but with interest. The other large group of financial aid recipients is student workers. If administrators expect student workers to pay 21 percent more for tuition, their salaries should increase proportionately.
While it is clear that A&M does have a need to increase the number of tenured faculty members, doing so only to improve A&M’s rankings among similar colleges is frivolous. The constant comparison with other large state universities is meaningless unless Gates addresses the needs of A&M students as his utmost priority.
In his Jan. 27 presentation, Gates attempted to justify the increase by comparing tuition prices with A&M’s counterparts, but overlooked the fact that the tuition increase will cause current students to pay for improvements to the University while most of them will not directly receive any of the benefits.
Unfortunately for underclassmen, Gates is not done. Had it not been for the students on the Tuition Advisory Council requests, the increase would have been more drastic. An increase for 2005 has already been mentioned.
When Texas legislators chose to deregulate tuition this summer, they simultaneously promised not to slap students with dramatic tuition increases. Unfortunately, the situation is out of their control due to the power given to the Board of Regents, which will vote on the tuition increase March 25-26.
Should the Regents choose to implement the increase, students will not only have been lied to, but will be forced to pay for changes they didn’t request.

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