Several programs at the University of La Verne have been hurting – along with the pocketbooks of many students here – thanks to major budget cuts to the federal Work-Study program. And there is no relief in sight for either the understaffed departments or the overtaxed students.
In the 2004-2005 school year there were approximately 507 student workers. The next year, the number was cut to about 300 student workers.
It is hard, as it is, trying to find a job that works around your school schedule. Having Work-Study allows students to make money managing and supervising certain facilities while taking the maximum number of units at school. It was a win-win situation for both students and universities.
Now with the cuts, students have to look somewhere else to help pay for their education, and some have to take the minimum required units to accommodate their less flexible off-campus work schedules.
We understand that the University has no power over this and that the cuts are consistent with other campuses.
But because of these cuts, there are not enough Work-Study students to keep certain campus facilities open for long hours, a further inconvenience for busy students.
What is the point of having a state-of-the-art library, computer lab or weight room, if the facilities’ hours are so limited that a majority of students don’t get to use them?
Do we have to find someplace else to do our research, exercise or other activities just because they cannot keep the facility opened during regular hours due to the lack of student workers?
The University is spending millions of dollars to renovate and improve the fitness center. The new weight room, which just opened yesterday, looks fantastic.
Yet with the decrease in Work-Study students, the equipment will go unused by many students.
The federal government needs to loosen up its purse strings – or, more specifically, invest in the future by giving our schools the money they need to hire us students for important on-campus positions.
Why should the students be at the bad end of the deal?
The government should think about that before they start cutting.
Instead of tax cuts to the rich and however many trillions toward fighting the war in Iraq, federal lawmakers really need to put some of that money back into education and restore Work-Study to its previous level.