Students misplace blame for tuition hikes and lack of food options

Vinson Pressley, Staff Writer


FIU is my home. I love everything about it: the people, the diversity, and the opportunities. But it isn’t perfect. I know my tuition keeps getting higher and my financial aid keeps getting lower: I haven’t been able to be the “big balla” and “shot caller” I used to be.


I know that the Biscayne Bay Campus, the campus I have a profound connection with, could use a couple more restaurants. Although these complaints are sometimes perceived as the plight of being an FIU student, blaming the wrong people will not get issues resolved, something I was once guilty of.


I would get my financial aid report and realize I was going to get back less money and would fight back the urge to kick down the door of the financial aid office and demand what happened? But then I’d be thankful for the blessing to even attend college.


However, I did blame financial aid for the increase and that’s not accurate: it’s not FIU’s financial aid office, SGA or even Mark B. Rosenberg who ultimately decides to increase our

tuition, it is the Florida Board of Governors.


According to, they’re the ones who decided to increase FIU’s annual tuition by 15 percent in 2012.


I know if I want my voice heard about tuition hikes, it’s probably best to address the

people who make the final decisions and write letters and emails to the good folks in

Tallahassee and express my sentiment.


Another common complaint is that BBC does not have enough food options or variety but there’s a reason for this and ironically, in a way it’s our fault.


Come to BBC during the evening hours or on a Thursday or Friday and it is a ghost town; I hate to say it but it is like being in a desert on a horse with no name-empty.


What does this mean? No demand!


If more restaurants are added to BBC, even though only a handful of students will visit the cafeteria for half the week, it would not be profitable and viable to survive.


According to Lorvin Ramirez, assistant food service director, Grille Works used to stay open until 8 p.m. but during the last two hours of the shift, he said only three to five customers would eat there.


Ramirez pointed out that currently, they wouldn’t have the volume of students necessary to open and sustain a new restaurant at BBC.

But the situation isn’t hopeless.


Ramirez encouraged that students can come to dining services or directly to him and make suggestions on what they want to see on the menu and if possible, they will make it happen.

Ramirez said that recently a student suggested quinoa and it made it to the menu. So although we may not have more restaurants, at least I can pitch some ideas and maybe even get it on the menu, create a demand and things will start happening.