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UWI unease

No decision yet if students will pay more to live on private halls

Observer writer

Saturday, August 01, 2020

STUDENTS of The University of the West Indies Mona campus, already faced with an increase in some tuition fees because of a slip in the value of the Jamaican dollar for courses priced in United States dollars, could also be asked to pay more to live on some halls this year.

The administration of the university has announced that it will keep hall fees constant for those it operates but there is no decision yet on the fees for students who live on the George Alleyne, Leslie Robinson and Irvine halls, which are operated by 138 Student Living.

According to The UWI, 138 Student Living will have to make the decision on what it will do about those fees.

But chief executive officer of 138 Student Living Cranston Ewan told the Jamaica Observer that no decision has yet been made.

“Hall fees are still a matter of ongoing discussions with The UWI, Mona. As a result, I am not in a position to comment about it at this time,” Ewan said in an e-mailed response to the Observer.

Ewan manages the private company which provides accommodation for students at The UWI. Some students of the University of Technology, Jamaica also live on the George Alleyne Hall.

For the 2019/2020 academic year, the 138 Student Living operated Irvine Hall offered single and double room occupancy. The cost for a single room on Irvine Hall was $32,296 per month, while the double occupancy was $27,810 monthly.

On the George Alleyne Hall a single room cost students J$56,295 while the double rooms cost $32, 670 monthly. The Leslie Robinson Hall offered single occupancy only at a cost of $56,295 per month.

UWI students will be allowed to move on to the halls on August 30 to begin its hybrid learning plan with a mixture of online and face-to-face classes for the new school year as part of measures to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The UWI administration is yet to confirm if the announcement that all double rooms will be converted to single-room occupancy to observe social distancing protocols will apply to 138 Student Living.