A Conversation With Dean Elliott About the Academic Excellence Fee

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by Lemuel Morrison, MBA 2012

Dean Elliott met with me on August 22nd to discuss the recently announced Academic Excellence Fee (AEF).    The issue is very contentious and caught graduate students uninformed and ill-prepared for the fall semester.  The Dean answered frank questions and offered an explanation for the timing of the AEF along with some of the reasoning.  Watch the video prepared by the Baruch College Technical Center to gain a better understanding of the AEF and form your own opinion.

 

Part 2
Part 3

Where Do We Go From Here?

Holly Blondin, MBA 2011,  made many comments on the GSA FB page and ended with “What now?, What are the Next Steps?”    We owe it to ourselves and to the institution to stay on top of this issue and influence how funds will be used.  Here are steps to take:

  • Voice your opinion and make it public.  Comment here on the Graduate Baruchian or on the GSA FB page.  It’s  important that you say something.  Silence is acquiescence.  Send your comments in confidence to me, or to anyone on the GSA;
  • Think how you want the AEF used.  This is a lot of money.  Decide what’s important to you: career counseling, academic guidance, etc;
  • Attend the discussions that the Dean has promised to conduct over the next semester; and
  • Stay informed.  Subscribe to the Graduate Baruchian and watch for GSA newsletters.  You have our commitment to follow the issue.  We need your input to provide the pressure.

In closing, no one is happy about rising costs or the way it was delivered. Voice your displeasure and turn this situation into an opportunity to improve the institution; thereby advancing your experience here and your earning potential in the long run.

We want to here from you.

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Comments
10 Responses to “A Conversation With Dean Elliott About the Academic Excellence Fee”
  1. Emily Rotella says:

    Make Your Voice Heard! The GSA discussed having students from each of the three schools (Zicklin, SPA, and Weissman) suggest the top 3 things you’d like to see this money go to at Baruch. We can wittle it down to one suggestion per school for what the Academic Excellence Fee should pay for. Then we can present our opinions to the administration. Email the GSA or me directly – emily.rotella@baruchmail.cuny.edu with your opinions and suggestions!!

  2. Emily Rotella says:

    I forgot to mention that I am so impressed with Lem Morrison!!!!

  3. Andrew says:

    The lack of a plan is the real problem. It isn’t the fee amount, or even the poor communication/timing, its the fact that I’ve already spent $750 and I don’t know where its going.

    Usually a school/organization has a plan in place for the money BEFORE they collect the fee. “We need 2 new computer labs and it will cost $10,000, and therefore we need to charge every student $25.” You don’t just select an arbitrary dollar amount and then figure out what you are going to do with it after you’ve collected.

    I have 3 semesters left which means I’m going to spend $2,250 and I honestly don’t mind paying a fee if I knew what it was going for. However since the Administration has no plan in place I’m confident that I will not see my money put to use during my time at Baruch.

    • Aleen Sevadjian says:

      This is exactly what I am upset about. To ask students to pay a significant sum of money without knowing what it’s going towards is the most frustrating aspect of this new fee. From reading the minutes Lem posted where the fee was first brought up, it almost seemed as though the administration saw an opportunity to increase revenue while still maintaining the “bargain” notion Baruch has compared to other business programs. Nevermind what it will be used for – let’s just collect the money because we can, and we’ll hammer out the details later. This not only contradicts what we’re taught in our business courses but it also borders on unconscionable.

      Where I’d like to see change is in the Graduate Academic Services Office. I work in this office as a graduate assistant and have seen first-hand how hard the advisers work while trying to assist graduate students with their academic planning. Unfortunately, having two academic advisers and an archaic paper filing system to cater to thousands of graduate students has some very obvious problems, as anyone who has ever visited the office during registration periods is well aware of. I think that the students of Zicklin would greatly benefit from having at the very least one additional adviser and that the administration should consider using a portion of the AEF towards the hiring of staff. Additionally, converting to an electronic filing system will make student records far more organized and accessible and will surely facilitate academic advising sessions. I end my tenure at Baruch in December and am positive that no changes will commence by then, but I hope that my $1,000 is not a wash and will somehow better Baruch for future students.

  4. Sally OuYang says:

    I am a marketing MS student and this is truly an outrage. The very first thing that he says this fee will help is career placement. Well, I ask anyone to log into the Zicklin GCMC and look at companies that are currently coming on campus to recruit at Baruch. It is, without exaggeration, 100% for accounting majors. No company has came on campus to recruit for marketing positions. I don’t believe as a Marketing MS student that I should be paying this fee and gaining absolutely nothing in terms of the benefits for job placement.

  5. Mike says:

    So if I’m hearing this correctly… I’m being forced to pay $1,500 / year directly out of my pocket so I can have the privilege of speaking with some random CUNY employee tell me what to do with my career? If I wanted to hear pointless advice I would talk to a piece of wood or perhaps even a rock. I wouldn’t pay $1,500 to talk with a panel of fortune 500 CEOs, why would I do so to speak with Joe Smith from CUNY????

  6. Matthew R. Miller says:

    The way the “Academic Excellence Fee” was rolled out was very underhanded. Burying the fee announcement in a random email right before the fall semester started, when students are already flooded with emails from the school, was insulting. This in addition to Zicklin sun-setting/splitting core courses in hopes of their students being forced to register for additional credits is despicable. Congratulations, I have one year left and l will never support a Baruch alumni program after I leave.

  7. Jason says:

    The way this fee was rolled out is not even worth mentioning. “Not
    fair” is sugarcoating the situation, but the fact that we have to pay
    the fee and then they will decide what to do with it, is even more
    upsetting. That only means that they did not have time even to think
    about it.
    Now since this is already been done I can only suggest the following
    things for the usage of the fee:
    The academic advisory needs more staff and quick. Last time I was
    there I have waited for more than 3 hours, and that’s after leaving
    work early. You cannot call because they never answer the phones and
    if they do they usually tell you to come and see them. I would like to
    be able to solve registration issues on the phone like every other
    place. A chat service would also be nice. We are in 2011. Also how
    about offering some on line classes? We are all very busy and
    sometimes it would be nice to have the opportunity to take online
    classes, especially with elective courses. It would be even cheaper to
    administer.
    Finally a suggestion not related to the fee. The first classes end now
    at 7:05 and the class after that starts at 7:30, who needs 25 min
    between classes. Start the 2nd class at 7:15 or 7:20 and finish 10-15
    min early.

Trackbacks
Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] Silence is acquiescence.  Make comments and let the GSA know how you want the fee used. Click here for the […]

  2. […] going on.   This I do know.  What crappy year for the CUNY Trustees.  The Kushner debacle, the Academic Excellence Fee kerfuffle and now this?  […]



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