The Fang bitten by financial crunch

The university’s handbook/code of conduct, FANG, will only be available online beginning with the 2009-2010 edition.            

This is the second step in FAMU’s goal to become a paperless university, according to Henry Kirby, associate vice president of the Division of Student Affairs and dean of students.

The first attempt was the addition of direct depositing from the financial aid office.           

The current state of the economy was a driving force in the speed of the change,” Kirby said.        

“We just don’t have the money to (publish in paper and the students are savvy enough now to get it online.”

Students like Rico Moody, 19, said using online services is convenient.

“That’ll be good,” said Moody, a general studies student from Atlanta. “It’ll keep everybody posted because a lot of us are on the Internet.”

When printing in paper, the university gets enough copies to provide each student with one. This brings the cost of production to around $25,000-30,000 per year.   

“Many students either don’t take it, or they discard it and most (nowadays) don’t even read it.”   

Some students said they only picked up a FANG when it was necessary.

“Truthfully, I never paid much attention to it,” said Regina Calhoun, 22, a senior health care management student from Jacksonville. “People won’t look at it until it’s needed for (a) specific purpose.”   

Kirby said that the university is switching online to also provide easy access to students and to prevent the university from more financial strain.            

“It’s cost effective to go that way,” Kirby said.       

There are four Web sites with access to the FANG online: Student’s personal profile on the school site, the A-Z database, the student life Web page and the Division of Student Affairs’ Web page.

Though skeptic, some students said they support FAMU’s online transition, as well as the paperless movement. “It would be good for the economy,” Calhoun said. “And it may be really good if it’s all user- friendly.”