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California Universities Say Students Must Finish in Four Years or Pay Penalties

Fifth year seniors could face additional fees
(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The new message to seniors in the California State University system could soon be, “Get in, get out, or pay up!”The California State University administrators are considering a new policy that would add additional fees to students who linger for a fifth year. This is one of three proposed fees that, according to World On Campus, would generate enough money to allow an additional 18,000 new students to enroll.

The fifth-year senior fines are similar to policies adopted at schools in Wyoming, Florida, Illinois, North Carolina and Wisconsin. But in California, studies show an estimated 52 percent of students don’t graduate in four years — many because budget cuts have made it hard for them to get the classes they need for their major. Studies show many students take courses they don’t need to fill out their required number just so they can keep their financial aid!

Other students point to having to switch majors. One student had to change to computer science after being rejected by one of the Cal-State nursing programs. Others report having to change during their junior year because the major was eliminated in budget cuts.

No word as to whether such policies will venture their way to WSU or UW, but as a college grad who utilized the fifth-year senior program at Whitworth, I believe as long as a student is not deliberately delaying their graduation, they should be allowed to finish without the additional punishment of fees. Even back in 1986 college was expensive enough without additional money at the end of the road.

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