CSUN drops 1,780 for not paying fees; up from fall

OnTay Johnson

Daily Sundial

The number of students dropped from their classes this semester increased to 1,780 from 1,431 in Fall 2005 after efforts were made by CSUN administrators to increase notification to students of their payment deadlines, said a university official.

As of Dec. 22, 2005, 1,780 students were disenrolled for not paying fees owed to the university by the extended payment deadline, said John Darakjy, assistant director of Financial Services.

After the 1,780 were dropped, 1,100 of them re-enrolled; 62 percent of the students who were penalized for not paying on timereinstated themselves, Darakjy said.

The university sought to help students become aware of notifications in regards to their fee deadlines, he said.

Although most students who paid their fees after being dropped, they had a hard time getting their classes back, he said.

“It was a big surprise for students to see that they couldn’t get all their classes back after they re-enrolled, after being disenrolled they have to add those classes and they’re not always going to get the classes they want,” Darakjy said.

“We had a committee formed that put together an extensive communication grid in order to increase student awareness,” Darakjy said.

Darakjy said the committee was formed in Fall 2005 with representatives from Cash Services, Student Accounting and Admissions and Records. The committee met and decided to inundate the students with information detailing the fees owed to the university, he said.

Darakjy said the university ran a report with the names of students who hadn’t paid their fees by Dec. 1 2005. The university then sent out e-mail and paper notices two weeks, and one week before their payments were due in order to encourage students to avoid being dropped from classes, he said.

“I talked to some of the students in the line and some still said that they didn’t receive an e-mail or a letter,” Darakjy said.

The committee was formed to increase students’ awareness of fee payments and deadlines.

“We did our job well-making sure people activated their accounts, so I doubt there is a correlation between what we did and the increase in student disenrollment,” said Karla Johnson-Majedi, director of Student Services Center, EOP Satellite in Engineering and Computers Sciences.

Johnson-Majedi said it might be a possibility that since there was more awareness for students this semester, the university might have been tougher on students who hadn’t paid their fees yet.

“I don’t understand why there are more students being disenrolled, but maybe the university was more lenient in the past. But because of what the committee did they weren’t this time,” Johnson-Majedi said.

Darakjy said the committee will have to make changes and continue to find ways in which to improve the system so that students can have every opportunity to take care of there responsibilities to the university.

Darakjy said every active student was sent two pages of information detailing tuition fees, and the various types of payment methods and installment options.

Anthony Castaneda, a fourth-year undeclared major, said he believes the problem is more simple than communication.

“This is my first time using the installment plan and I think the reason students don’t pay on time is because they don’t have the money,” Castaneda said.

The CSUN installment plan allows students to enroll in classes while paying their tuition and fees throughout the semester.

Several students believe that despite the CSUN’s attempt to accommodate them, a lack of communication still exists.

“You have to be proactive about finding out deadlines, I just received my notice to pay four days ago,” said Wyatt Ferguson, a third-year psychology major.

Ferguson said many students don’t know they have a CSUN e-mail account.

“I never check my CSUN account and I don’t even know how,” Ferguson said. “I have to forward everything to a personal account.”

OnTay Johnson can be reached at ontayjohnson@yahoo.com.