Interim President Castell V. Bryant extended the registration deadline to Tuesday Sept. 6 due to long lines in the financial aid office during the first week of classes.
Bryant and members of the Student Government Association (SGA) personally visited the financial aid office on Aug. 30 because the line extended out of the front door of Foote Hilyer and moved approximately three feet every hour.
SGA Vice President Phillip Agnew said some members of SGA went to financial aid Monday and tried to help the situation by redirecting students whose issues could be resolved by other departments. Agnew said SGA President Ramon Alexander called him Tuesday in urgency to go to financial aid to assist students.
Agnew said while he was at the financial aid office, Alexander was at the president’s office convincing Bryant to step in to get the financial aid line down.
“I (decided to go down to Foote Hilyer) because I had a concern that the real reason many of the students were in the line was not going to be communicated,” Bryant said in an interview with The Famuan.
“Many students had outstanding balances. Last April we started contacting them because they owed the university and we had lenders to help them. Lenders came from April 11-13 and very few students came.” Bryant said.
As Bryant entered the office around 12:30 p.m. while passing some restless students who had been in line since 6 a.m., she was greeted with applause.
Bryant spent nearly seven minutes in the financial aid office. As she left students stretched their hands in her direction yelling, “Don’t go, don’t go.”
Bryant stood still and announced, “We solved the problem and at 1 p.m. you can go to the Grand Ballroom.”
After Bryant left, Agnew announced that financial aid would open seven computers in the Grand Ballroom and there would be financial aid advisors on sight to assist students there.
Carla Stanley, 21, a senior physical therapy major from Palm Beach, who stood in line for seven hours was not excited by the announcement. “I had to miss a day at work and two classes,” Stanley said.
Stanley said the extension gives the financial aid department more time to correct problems they didn’t handle.
“Without financial aid I can’t receive any books,” Stanley said.
McClea Predelus, 19, a sophomore business administration major from Miami, said he applied for a loan in May to clear up his past due balance and financial aid hasn’t processed his paperwork.
“I can’t register for classes, and now all my classes are closed,” Predelus said.
Agnew said while he was at financial aid he noticed that some students were worried about receiving a fee for paying for classes late. Agnew said students shouldn’t worry about the late fee if their reason for registering late is the university’s fault.
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