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Free printing gone after less than a year

Photo by Amanda Goldstein
Photo by Amanda Goldstein

Queens College will no longer provide free printing for students at the Rosenthal Library, according to a recent announcement by Vice President for Student Affairs Adam Rockman.

Starting last April, students were able to print for free at the Library, while other buildings still charged a fee for students. Before that program, students were allocated $15 on their Q-Cards to print on campus, after evaluating their professors online.

Free printing was pushed for by Students for Change in conjunction with the Office for Converging Technologies to implement the program. At the time, former Student Association President Matthew Louie and his administration believed this would help students, yet warned not to abuse the privilege.

However, Rockman noted in an email announcement the “abuse of unrestrictive student printing” and lack of access to computers as reasons for the discontinuation of the policy.

According to a report on Aug. 20, a student printed 13,685 pages in the library. This caused concern for the Student Tech Fee Committee who looked into methods to limit such excessive printing.

Acting Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Elizabeth Hendrey and AVP/CIO Office of Information Technology Claudia Colbert both said alternatives were considered by the committee before agreeing on $10 for each student.

Alternatives were investigated, such as limiting each student to a number of free pages per day, week, month or semester. Print management systems do this by providing dollar amount allocations per day, week, month or semester and setting a per page cost. This provides a designated number of free prints to each student anywhere on campus, not unlimited free printing to some, and no use by students who do not or cannot go to the Library to print,” Hendrey and Colbert said.

Students will now have $10, yet Hendrey and Colbert highlighted students can print more pages than before since the cost of printing was cut from $.10 to $.05. In addition, based on the remaining $80,000 for free printing, it was decided to split the money up between all the students.

The sub-committee members felt that a $0.05 per page cost was better than a $0.10 per page cost for students who went over their allocation, and needed to pay for additional printing. It is worth noting that in 2013 the per page B&W charge was $0.10 per page. Students can print 50 more pages this semester than they could in Spring 2013,” Hendrey and Colbert said.

Anthony Patti, a junior, believed this would eventually occur considering the abuse of printing on campus.

I think it was a reasonable decision to add a limit to printing. People were sometimes abusing the free printing,” Patti said.

QC students, along with Student Government officials, comprise part of the Tech Fee Sub-Committee for Student Printing. It will meet after mid-terms deciding what students will receive in the future.

Shamari Stewart, a senior, was one of the students who benefited from the policy, but was disappointed by the changes.

It’s a shame that we’ll be losing free printing here at QC. It was really convenient for me to use,” Stewart said.

Brandon Jordan

Brandon is a senior majoring in Political Science and Economics with a minor in Business And Liberal Arts. He covers labor and activism at CUNY. He also likes to cook, bake, run and make puns, sometimes not in that order. You can follow him on Twitter @BrandonJ_R and email him at brandon[at]theknightnews.com.

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