WMU students may be eligible for partial credits for housing, meal plan and parking permits purchased by students who left early due to COVID-19. Most students have departed WMU’s campus to continue their online learning at home since the closure of residence halls and Gov. Whitmer’s stay-at-home executive order, which took into effect on March 24.
The university sent an email to students on the evening of Thursday, March 26 detailing the possible refunds. Residents who have vacated the university will be eligible for $1000 if they have a meal plan and $500 if they do not.
“Students who checked out of their residence hall between March 11 and March 24, 2020, and departed the facilities, will have a credit applied to their student account. Those vacated residents who had a meal plan during the spring 2020 semester will receive a $1,000 account credit. Residents who did not have a meal plan this semester will receive a credit of $500,” the email explains.
Further consideration was made for commuter meal plans. According to the email, students with commuter meal plans will be eligible for refunds of $60 to $500 depending on the cost of the plan.
Students with parking permits may also be eligible for refunds. Those with annual permits may receive a $30 credit on their account, while those with semester permits will receive $60 according to the email. A student petition for parking permit refunds was posted to Change.org on March 11 and had nearly 3,500 signatures by the time of this decision.
The credit will be posted to eligible students’ accounts once parking services reopens. Students can apply for the credit by emailing their name, WIN and permit number to email@example.com or by calling (269)-387-4609
The full text of the email reads:
Dear students and families,
With the beginning of distance education on March 16, closure of residence halls this past week and the governor's stay-at-home executive order for the state of Michigan that took effect on March 24, all due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of students have departed Western Michigan University's campus while continuing to pursue their academic studies remotely.
As a result of early departure from campus this spring semester, WMU students may be eligible for partial credits for housing, meal plan and parking permits purchased. The University developed the credit plans in recognition of students' prior investments for the following services and accommodations.
Students who checked out of their residence hall between March 11 and March 24, 2020, and departed the facilities, will have a credit applied to their student account. Those vacated residents who had a meal plan during the spring 2020 semester will receive a $1,000 account credit. Residents who did not have a meal plan this semester will receive a credit of $500. Additional details, including eligibility requirements and contact information, will be provided in a separate email to residents.
Commuter meal plan
Students who had a commuter meal plan and did not live in a residence hall for the spring 2020 semester also are eligible for a credit. The credit will range from $60 to $500, depending on the cost of the meal plan purchased. Look for additional details, including eligibility requirements and contact information, to be provided in a separate email to students who have purchased this meal plan.
WMU Parking Services will be offering prorated credits for the 2019-20 annual parking permit and 2020 spring semester permit. Students who continue to live and park on campus will not be eligible for the credit. Eligible students may request a credit to their account by submitting their name, WIN and WMU permit number to firstname.lastname@example.org. After WMU's campus is back to full operations, students may also make their request by calling (269) 387-4609.
The amount of the parking permit credit is based on the length of time a permit may be used, the purchase price and the closure of the residence halls (when a permit was not in use). For annual permits, which are valid from Sept. 1, 2019, through Aug. 31, 2020, the credited amount will be $30. The annual permit will remain valid after campus returns to normal operations through the end of August. For spring semester permits, valid from Jan. 1, 2020, through April 30, 2020, the credited amount for the semester permit will be $60. A requested credit will be applied to student accounts after WMU's parking office reopens
For any of the housing, meal or parking permit credits, students may receive a refund if the total credit is greater than the total amount due on their student account. The appropriate credit will be applied first to any outstanding charges, then to spring 2020 tuition, then to fees. The University will issue a payment for any credit balance that remains.
Thank you for your patience as the University worked to formulate these plans.
Vice President for Student Affairs
Jan Van Der Kley
Vice President for Business and Finance and Chief Financial Officer