The School of Journalism charges students program fees to provide special services and equipment required to prepare students for their professional careers. Ideally, the university would provide funds for the extra expenses, but that would not be fair to other majors, such as History or Philosophy, that do not require specialized equipment or services. Many majors at the UA don’t need the latest industry-standard software, digital cameras, or internship training, but journalism does to remain nationally competitive. We want to make sure students have the tools they need to succeed when they graduate.
All journalism majors are charged $250 per semester in program fees. In comparison, about 50 departments at the UA charge much more, with the campus average around $550 per semester and some as high as $1,500 or more (see the list). Arizona State University’s journalism program charges $500 per semester. Of the roughly $210,000 in program fees collected each year by the UA School of Journalism, 14 percent is set aside and redistributed to students who demonstrate financial need, and about 15 percent is allocated to the university’s central administration, leaving about $150,000 a year directly for student services. The school ended its course fees starting Fall 2018, so students can consistently predict what they will pay each semester.
Here is how the school spends student program fees for students each year:
|Computer lab updates, video/camera equipment and other tech supplies||$47,000|
|Salary/benefits for part-time internship coordinator||$33,000|
|Staff salary/benefits support for extracurricular activities||$20,000|
|Special page design and video assistance for courses and publications||$15,000|
|Graders and other student course assistants||$10,000|
|Student club support travel and dues (SPJ, etc.)||$3,500|
|Student special reporting project support||$3,500|
|Reading Room and Innovation Hub supplies and support||$4,000|
|School media publication expenses||$14,000|
Graduate Program Fees
Journalism grad students pay $100 per credit as a program fee. Of the total $30,000 in revenue typical each year, the school distributes about $4,500 for students who demonstrate financial need and another $4,500 is allocated to the university’s central administration. The school is left with about $17,000 to go toward coordination of the master’s program by paying for some of the salary and benefits of the graduate program coordinator, and about $4,000 is used for special programs and student activities.