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Hundreds of students escaped the stark reality of being deregistered by the university in the
academic year of 2020 and particularly semester one, after earnest advocacy by the guild
council.
Like any other academic year with financial constraints, 2020 was no different and could be
the worse, with the intervention of the novel coronavirus creating mayhem. Students were not
only targeted by everyday university struggles but many other which presented themselves
such as untimely relocation. Students faced even more mounting challenges as parents' and
guardians' finances grew unstable and the university saw some 300 applications for leave of
absence (LOA).
In general, if one is unable to cover their tuition or any other fees for the academic year, they
will have to face the consequences of being deregistered or their account being put on hold,
which deprives them of accessing the university’s systems.
However, Guild president Sujae Boswell and his team lobbied for a change, to have students
cover at least 65% of their fees instead of facing deregistration and it was successful. The
president took to his social medium on the 25 th of November saying, “The UWI Mona admin
has agreed to our position that students who have paid at least 50% of their semester fees
should be allowed clearance for exams once they enter into a payment arrangement by
December 7, 2020. Make the best use of this facility. #YourGuildWorking4You”.
The tuition payment plan for students has also been reduced and the time for payment
extended. Students were allowed to register once 15% of tuition was paid and the full
miscellaneous.
It should be further noted that other students were granted temporary clearance, in the event
that their scholarships weren’t awarded in a timely fashion. Among these students are the
Trinidad and Tobago Association students who receive benefits through Government
Assisted Tuition Expenses (GATE) among other international students.
Additionally, Student Loan Bureau (SLB) recipients who were complying and met the SLB
document submission status were also exempt.
Students were eternally grateful for this mediation. The advocacy was for semester one and
can only be served for such a period. Therefore, it will take a continuous renewal of this
activism to help students who are facing financial challenges.
Vice president Deveraine Rowe says he’s not sure if the same approach will be taken for the
current semester and it all depends on what the university is proposing but the guild council is
hopeful that no student will be deregistered.

 

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