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My Cap and Gown Cost $89,669

The UConn senior graduation fair is currently taking place on campus.  This is an event where graduating students can pick up commencement tickets, caps and gowns, and all other graduation necessities. 

I had no idea until this week that students have to pay a separate fee for their cap and gown.  I thought the ~$90,000 and miscellaneous fees like tuition, housing, text books, food, and unbilled hours of my time would have been enough to earn a cap and gown.  However, caps and gowns cost students $39, and that is totally unacceptable. 

It would be one thing if UConn was an institution that responsibly used funds for important things that made it a better place, but this is the same university that paid $1 million dollars for a stair case in a building that already has two other stair cases and and two elevators.  This is the same university that has the highest paid government workers in the entire state, a state which has one of the highest wealth disparities in the entire country.  This is the same university that has an increasing problem with empty beds on campus.  This is the same university that continued to pay a $200,000 salary to a professor who had been dead for months. This is the same university that is supposed to be one of the most affordable options for Connecticut high school students, and still charges those students who are bright enough to graduate in four years about $40 for their caps and gowns.

The consequences of irresponsible spending should not fall on students’ shoulders.  When the State couldn’t agree on a yearly budget, students were asked to rally, call and write lawmakers asking them to consider the UConn community in their budget making.  Please do not ask me to use my time, time that I have to spend studying and volunteering so this enormous cost is worthwhile for my future, to makeup for the financial mistakes of so many adults- and please, God, don’t ask me for an extra $40 on top of the almost $90,000 that has gone toward one of the most “affordable” options for Connecticut students to pay for something that I have certainly already paid for.  


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