Students exercise fee waivers; funding for student groups in danger

Nov. 4, 2015, 12:35 a.m.

After 13 percent of undergraduate students waived their student activity fees for fall quarter, student groups are at risk of experiencing budget cuts if the percentage of fees waived remains above 10 percent next quarter.

All degree-seeking Stanford students are automatically charged the student activity fee to fund grant groups and allow the ASSU to allocate funds to student groups and community initiatives.

In an email sent out to the student body, ASSU Financial Manager Frederik Groce ’14 M.A. ’15 wrote a statement alerting students to the impact and significance of waiving the student activity fee.

“This message is meant not to stop individuals from waiving their fees, but to inform students about the impact of their actions,” Groce wrote. “When a fee is waived, you as a student are making a statement.”

Usually, waiver rates remain between 5 to 6 percent for undergraduates and 2 to 3 percent for graduate students. While the graduate rate remained at 2 percent, the 6 or 7 percent increase in undergraduate rates resulted in a total of 13 percent of Stanford undergraduate students who have waived their fees for fall quarter.

As a result of the ASSU’s monetary reserves, no student groups will be receiving budget cuts this quarter. However, the ASSU cannot cover the expenses for the next two quarters if the percentage of students waiving their fees remains above 10 percent. Groce warns students against viewing student activity fee waiving as a way to acquire “free money.”

“Waiving a fee means that you as a student choose not to fund organizations around campus; it also means that you do not intend to participate in any of the activities that might be put on by the groups whose fee you have waived,” he said.


Contact Andrea Villa at acvilla ‘at’

An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that a total of 15 percent of Stanford students had waived their fees for fall quarter. The Daily regrets this error.

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