Anger as College appears to break Take Back Trinity deal

A number of continuing non-EU students reported being billed a 5% increase in fees

Photo by Joe McCallion for Trinity News

College has increased non-EU and postgraduate fees by 5%, appearing to breach the fee certainty agreement agreed upon by the College Board in March, which followed the Take Back Trinity protests.

College agreed to give fee certainty to postgraduate students and continuing international undergraduate students. College issued the fee certainty agreement following the success of the Take Back Trinity movement in March, when it also reversed its decision to charge a €450 flat fee for supplemental exams.

An official meeting took place this morning between the Presidents of Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) and the Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) to discuss the issue.

Speaking to Trinity News, TCDSU President Shane De Rís and GSU President Oisín Vince Coulter issued a joint statement condemning the increases: “The SU and GSU both reject any fee increases for students, EU or non-EU.”

“We fought against this last year to protect students and any attempt by college to increase fees flies in the face of the fee certainty agreement ratified by board. These increases are unacceptable and we will be challenging them,” De Rís and Vince Coulter stated.

Fees for the majority of STEM courses, including Natural Science and Mathematics, have increased from €23,520 last year to €24,695 for the 2018/2019 academic year.

Speaking to Trinity News, a Senior Fresh Computer Science student confirmed their fees for next year had increased by over €1,000 on the previous year. “I feel like this is pure deception considering Trinity promised not to increase the fees for non-EU,” the student explained. “I am not gonna [sic] lie, I feel anxious about the higher fees I would have to pay in the subsequent years.”

Two-subject moderatorship fees have increased for non-EU students, rising from €17,960 last year to €18,860 for the coming year. Non-EU students studying Business, Economics, and Social Studies (BESS), Law, or European Studies, among other Arts courses, face the same increase. Medicine students will continue to pay €45,000 per year.

Postgraduate fees have also been affected, with the annual fee for M.Sc. Management of Information Systems increasing from €4,585 to €4,814.

College had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.