Posted: 11/15/23

TAMIU's Proposed Student Health Fee Increase Information Sessions Scheduled



Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) officials are encouraging students to attend information sessions to learn about a proposed change to the Student Health Fee.

A total of four information sessions are scheduled on Friday, Nov. 17, 12 p.m., at the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library Colonnade; Monday, Nov. 20, 12 p.m., Student Center Rotunda; Tuesday, Nov. 21, 12:30 p.m., online at go.tamiu.edu/F23ReferendumInfoSession; and Monday, Nov. 27, 3:30 p.m., Killam Library Colonnade.

If passed, the Student Health Fee would increase by a flat $24.35 per long semester. There will be no increase for summer semesters. If passed, the change would take effect in Fall 2024.

A referendum on the proposed increase will take place Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 8 a.m. to Thursday, Nov. 30 at 11:59 p.m.

Students can cast their votes here starting on Nov. 28: go.tamiu.edu/F23Referendum

TAMIU President Dr. Pablo Arenaz said that the proposed fee is being introduced to help maintain and enhance high quality health services to TAMIU students, and in particular, to expand mental health support services.

"The TAMIU Student Fee Advisory Committee met recently and unanimously voted to place the proposed Student Health Fee change on a referendum," Dr. Arenaz said, "The proposed increase is crucial as its goal is to help maintain and enhance the availability of mental health support services for our students."

Dr. Arenaz continued, "We are committed to providing our students with the resources and tools necessary to succeed in their academic journey. The referendum is being presented after discussions by the Student Fee Advisory Committee identified the need for a more robust support in the area of mental health services for our students."

According to the World Economic Forum, mental health and wellbeing issues on university campuses have increased exponentially, as just in the last six years, student anxiety in higher education institutions spiked from 17% to 31%.

The American Psychological Association reports that during the 2020-2021 school year, more than 60 percent of college students satisfied the criteria for having at least one mental health issue for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Also, a CNN report states that the number of college students reporting anxiety and depression has been on the rise for years and that the situation has worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Arenaz said that TAMIU is taking the lead by joining universities nationwide in addressing the need for increased mental health care services for students.

"If passed, the Student Health Referendum will fund additional student health services such as 24/7 online counseling, additional on-campus counseling and expanded disability services," he said, "We encourage students to attend the information sessions and equip themselves with the necessary details so that they can decide on how to cast their votes."

For additional information, contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at 956.326.2180, e-mail prmis@tamiu.edu or visit tamiu.edu

University information on the fee hearings is also posted on Uconnect, the University’s official student communication portal, as well as TAMIU’s Facebook and Twitter sites.