(MTSU) Partial tuition reimbursement for online classes from COVID-19 side effects

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On March 11th, 2020 Middle Tennessee State University made the decision to extend spring break until Monday, March 23rd and to continue class instruction remotely for the duration of the semester due to the mounting danger COVID-19 poses to our Raider community. We understand the toll this situation puts on our University, but we ask that the administration recognize and help to relieve the burden it places on the student body. While the need to transition to remote learning is of no fault to the university, it results in a level of education and services not reflective of the amount of tuition paid by all students. Some instructors are opting to use video communication platforms such as Zoom or to simply upload course material onto D2L as a supplement to textbook material or slides. This transition to remote learning is a considerable reduction in overall educational and instructional quality, which we fear will adversely affect our educational and professional outcomes moving forward.

In addition to the decrease in our level of education, many students are faced with the burden of compromised access to important facilities paid for in their tuition, such as a library with computers and internet access, paid meals at dining halls, and the health clinic. While the university is attempting to address these concerns individually, the overall issue remains that we are unable to receive the level of education and services paid for in our tuition. This issue rings especially true for students looking to graduate this May. Seniors could find themselves facing a stagnant job market due to the financial ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic. This circumstance is further exacerbated by the obligation to pay full tuition, which puts some Seniors in a compromising financial situation going forward.

With this in mind, we call upon our university to recognize the gap between what we paid for and what we are receiving. Middle Tennesse State University tuition is $8,898 in-state and $27,098 out-of-state. We are asking for a reasonable refund of between 5% to 10% of that tuition amount.

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