Marine Institute to continue credit card payments for student fees
Monday, July 22, 2013

Memorial University expects to save about $550,000 by eliminating fees paid to credit card companies while still allowing students the flexibility of paying their student account fees with Visa or MasterCard should they so choose.

Moneris, Memorial’s clearing house for credit card payments, will charge a 1.95 per cent convenience fee to those who use a credit card to make payments on student accounts.

Memorial University including Marine Institute students still have several payment options at no cost or low cost including online or telephone banking, payment by mail using cheque, money order, bank draft or wire transfer of funds, or payment in person by cash, cheque or debit card.

International students who do not have a Canadian bank account for online or telephone banking can use wire transfers, international money orders or bank-certified cheques for payment of student accounts.

The new fee came into effect on July 1, 2013. The fees-payment deadline has also been extended for the fall and winter semesters for this year only to coincide with the last day to add courses to allow students extra time to adjust to the change. The deadline for fees payment for the fall semester is Sept. 18, 2013, and for the winter semester January 17, 2014.

Memorial’s Board of Regents decided in 2012 to eliminate the use of credit cards for payment of tuition and other student account charges as part of its effort to find administrative savings with minimal impact on academic programming and student activities. Service charges associated with credit card payments have increased significantly during the past number of years.

A committee made up of academic and administrative units and student groups on the St. John’s campus, Marine Institute and Grenfell Campus was formed to examine the effect this policy would have on those paying fees and to address concerns about this policy change.

Subsequent discussions with Moneris resulted in the option to charge a fee for use of credit cards known as a convenience fee. The committee unanimously recommended the proposal from Moneris and the Board approved this proposal at its May 9, 2013 meeting.

This fee may change at the discretion of Moneris; Memorial does not set this rate.

Memorial University including the Marine Institute will continue to accept credit cards without the payee incurring a convenience fee, for other payments such as application fees, residence application fees and residence deposits, parking fees, purchases at university bookstores, purchases at the MI Cafeteria, the Computer Purchasing Centre and donations.

Some 30 universities across the country have discontinued the use of credit cards to pay fees, including Dalhousie University, McGill, the University of Toronto and the University of British Columbia.