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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


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Nothing But The Facts

The Minnesota State Student Association has unleashed a poster campaign that has covered the campus with startling facts about university spending.

by Matt Johnston

Issue date: 1/23/07 Section: Campus News


The Minnesota State Student Association wants MSU students to be knowledgeable on current and future changes with tuition and student fees, all the way down to parking lots being paid or free.

At the beginning of the 2007 Spring semester, MSSA plastered a variety of ten different posters around campus to help create awareness of issues that will affect students.

The posters feature questions like, "Did you know tuition increased 67 percent in the last 6 years?" ... "Did you know residence hall rates increase up to $300 per year?" and "Did you know the free lot might change to a $40 permit lot next fall?" just to name a few.

"I would hope that this poster campaign will help students be informed that they can make a difference through MSSA," said MSSA President Gabe Afolayan. "We want to represent students the best we can."

The idea came from Afolayan and MSSA Vice President Chris Frederick.

"We wanted to inform students who and what the student government does and help students get more involved," Frederick said. "Now that students are informed they can tell us what they want us to do about it."

This campaign is also a tool for the student senate to get back in touch with the student body constituency, which Afolayan notes has been lacking in recent years.

"It's high-time that students know where their money goes," Afolayan said. "Since we recommend where the fees go, we want students to tell us what they want."

Response to the posters has been mixed, but mostly positive. The MSSA office has received numerous positive reactions such as students appreciating the information or that they simply didn't know what was truly going on with student fees.

Sandie Knutson, a senior at MSU said, "I don't really pay much attention I guess." Knutson found only one of the numerous posters surprising.

Dr. Gina Wenger, an art professor on campus said, "I think it's fabulous. Their questions bring up issues that directly effect MSU students, which brings up open dialogue."

The reason the MSSA has embarked on this campaign now is because the student senate faces a busy schedule this spring with budget recommendations. Issues like resident hall rates, student fees, student union, tuition and tech fees are all on the current agenda.

"We want to strike while the iron is hot," Afolayan said.

One way students can get involved is by calling (507) 389-2611 or stopping into the MSSA offices in CSU 280 to voice their opinions. Another way to get involved is to fill out the tuition and fee survey that will be handed out some time next week.

Matt Johnston is a Reporter staff writer