Budget cut imposes strict enforcement of 900-page student limit

Andy Hsiao Chung, Staff Writer

Due to a concern over possible budget cuts, over the summer faculty members were informed via e-mail to cut back on the amount of printed materials distributed in class.

“The limit is set by the main campus, (in the computer services divisory). It has been 900 sheets per semester for as long as I’ve remembered, which has been 22 years,” said Eckenrod.

The summer e-mail alleviated some professors’ concerns that asking students to print the materials on their own would create a financial burden, saying they should be aware that students had already been charged for paper as part of their tuition.

“Printing comes out of student’s technology fee…and it varies every year,” Eckenrod said.

“When a certain building doesn’t have wireless, the student technology fee pays for it. When there aren’t enough printing allocations it is also students’ technology fee that pays for printing.

“And when there aren’t opened computer labs, fees also pay for opened computer labs…so your student technology fee pays for a multitude of things across the university.

“And since these things change all the time, I couldn’t say what percentage of the money goes toward printing since Pitt-Oakland figures that out. We don’t control that, and we don’t set the technology fee, nor do we decide how it gets split up.”

Eckenrod also said that computer lab printers, either in Owen Library or Blackington Hall, are not to be a substitute for textbook purchases. He claimed there was a problem with three students who had printed out 700 pages of documents and claimed they were required to do so by their professor.

“Originally the students told the Information Technology Department staff that their instructors told them to print these out,” Eckenrod said. “Now it turns out the instructor didn’t really tell them to print them out. The instructor said that the documents are out there, and you need to be familiar with them.

“So these students took upon themselves and printed out these 700 pages.

“They weren’t told to print them out.

“Students’ allocation for printing is 900 sheets, so you do need to be careful as you go along on what you print.”

When students exceed 90 percent of the printing limit, the system sends out an e-mail to make students more aware through the rest of the semester. Eckenod said he also welcomes students who exceed to print limit to talk to him, and he could grant an allocation increase for a valid reason after meeting with instructors.