New policy moves back drop date


Every semester, it seems more and more Missouri Southern students are dropped from classes due to financial aid mishaps.

In late October, the Bursar’s office announced a plan intended to help ease this process for students.

“The due date changed because we’re trying to be more student friendly,” Alicia Hughes, University bursar, said. “We’re trying to gear this office to be an office where students feel comfortable coming.”

Though financial aid and the Bursar’s office can seem like scary places to students, Hughes insists they’re only there to help students in need.

“We want to see everybody paid and good to go,” she said. “We don’t want to drop anyone.”

The new policy is more simple than in the past, offering just two drop dates rather than several. In the past, students could be dropped for nonpayment before classes even began.

That will no longer be the case.

“We got completely away from the first due date, which was before classes started, and we moved that due date to the second week of classes,” Hughes said.

In doing so, students have more time to ensure financial aid and payment issues are sorted out before being dropped from their classes.

Should a student still not be able to get all his or her fees paid by the due date, they will still be dropped, but may be reinstated up to a week after the initial drop date.

In order to be reinstated, a student my have 100 percent of their tuition and fees and a $15 reinstatement fee — up from $10 under the previous policy. A press release sent out on Oct. 25  incorrectly mentioned a $50 reinstatement fee. 

The switch from payment plans to a one time, in full payment is  a change from the past, where a student could pay out their tuition and fees over the course of a semester with three payments.

Because of this, some students are against the policy.

Anthony Giarratano, junior business major, said he sees the policy as unfair to certain segments of students.

“I think that the due dates for the tuition are unrealistic and a tad bit unfair to the students who are on payment plans,” he said. “The reinstatement fee should cost next to nothing. I understand the University is squeezing the juice out of each and every student it can but the University needs to have another economic pow wow.”

Hughes insisted, though, that the University and specifically the Bursar’s office is committed to helping students in the fastest way possible. She said the policy should streamline the drop and reinstatement process by allowing University employees to work faster to solve those issues.

“When we did the drop and reinstatement of one week, it’s a lot of management and a longer process,” she said. “It’s hard to manage once you get several students in that process.”

The new drop date for the upcoming spring semester is 5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 26.