The last number of weeks have seen a a renewed examination of the full expense of being a student in Ireland. DCU sent an open letter distancing themselves from several third party accommodation services, used by DCU, which are set to drastically increase their rental costs by some 27%, to around €9,000 per year. Trinity students, successfully, protested to stop the introduction of €450 exam resit fees and now it has been revealed that DIT have themselves made a staggering €253,937 from exam repeat fees in the last two years.
Records released under the Freedom of Information Act reveal that students across all DIT campuses paid €112,787 to repeat exams in the 2015/2016 academic year. The figure jumped again the next academic year, with the college bringing in €141,150 for 2016/2017. Repeat exams for DIT students cost €100, regardless of the number of modules the student fails.
DIT raised more than either Institute of Technology Tallaght (ITT) and Institute of Technology Blanchardstown (ITB) from supplemental examinations, according to The Edition. ITB took in the second most of the three TU4D colleges, bringing in €95,900 in 2015/2016 and €91,700 in 2016/2017. ITT had the lowest amount of students repeating in the three colleges. Students in Tallaght paid €78,000 in total for repeats in 2015/2016, a figure which jumped to €88,000 in 2016/2017. NUI Maynooth made a total of €258,745 from repeating students in 2015/2016, a number which reduced slightly to €258,100 last year. DCU students paid €271,880 in repeat exam fees in 2015/2016, which rose again to €184,790 in 2016/17. UCD refused to release their figures.
Students angered by the cost of resit fees in their college should take a leaf out of a TCD's students book. After weeks of protesting, the Provost of TCD Patrick Prendergast agreed today to drop the proposed introduction of supplemental fees. Students, who had been gathered outside House 1 - where the meeting had been taking place - chanted in celebration at the news that their weeks of protesting had paid off.
— TCD Students' Union (@tcdsu) March 28, 2018
The college will create a board that will assess the possibility of at some point implementing modular billing, comprised of a committee of five people which, crucially, includes the President of the SU and GSU. Although the SU did not originally want a modular billing plan, the involvement of student representatives is a significant coup.
The College's u-turn on this decision can only be seen as a comprehensive victory for the #TakeBackTrinity movement and a sign of what can be achieved through protest and dissent.