Tuition Doesn’t Come To Fruition

| Learning | December 12, 2015

(Every six months, I get calls to donate to my university. Given some recent scandals, including the university buying the over-paid President a million-dollar home (in a location where $250K could buy you a mansion, and with the university having a “President’s Residence” of multiple bedrooms and entertaining spaces available that they already own), I’m not inclined to donate to them, so I largely ignore the calls, since they all come from the same number. However, during their latest campaign, they seem to be desperate, and are calling me more than normal, sometimes up to three times a day. Because the calls are so persistent, I answer one.)

Caller: “Hello, we are calling you from the [University] foundation to inquire whether you would like to make a donation to your alma mater. I see that you are a [Year] graduate, and donated to our emergency financial assistance fund in [Year]. Would you be interested in donating again to that fund or the general fund this year?”

Me: “Look, I know that it’s your job to make these calls, and you are just a student trying to earn a buck, but I’d really like to be removed from your calling list. I disagree with the direction the university has taken, and feel that if I donated any money, it wouldn’t be used for the best interests of the students. Can you remove me from your calling list?”

Caller: “But, don’t you want to support needy students who are suffering sudden hardships? Funds that you donate to the emergency financial assistance fund would go for that.”

Me: “I do understand that, to an extent, but with tuition and fees increasing at a clip of 10% each year and some of the decisions the administration has made recently, I just don’t feel like my money would be going to the right place, even if it kept a needy student in school. Even in that case, a good chunk of that money would go to pay fees that have nothing to do with instruction and everything to do with over-spending on frivolous luxuries for the administration and sports. I just can’t support that, and would like to be removed from your calling list.”

Caller: “But you want to support needy students getting an education, so why don’t you just donate?”

Me: “Because that’s really not where the money would go. One more time, please remove me from your calling list.”

Caller: “…”

Me: “Are you there? Can you remove me from your calling list?”

Caller: “I suppose, but you just cost me a performance bonus!”

Me: “Go have a meeting with [University President] about that… It’s not MY fault that the university is poorly managed these days, and I can’t justify a donation under those circumstances. I’m also going to go ahead and apologize that you’re paying so much to be a student there with such poor management and extravagant spending on non-academic things. I barely escaped that; you’re bearing the brunt of it.”

Caller: “Yeah, whatever. We’ll stop calling you.” *before he actually hangs up the phone* “What a bitch!”

(They did stop calling, but I’m not sure that student understood how badly his tuition dollars were being managed…)

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