By: Atticus Greyson
Despite what they say, Marymount University does not consider its students when making choices. My experience at Marymount has been consistently riddled with hardships and inconveniences caused by the school. I treasure the relationships I have developed with peers and faculty, the closeness I have achieved within my departments. But, I am struggling to feel proud of my school when so many things go wrong.
In the beginning of my academic career at MU, I paid $15,495 for tuition alone. Now, I pay $17,200. That’s over a thousand dollar difference for an education that has
transitioned to about half online and half in-person. Tuition increases are natural with economic shifts and a growing cost of living in Arlington. However, it’s hard to
sit by when the quality of life for students goes down drastically despite the increased cost.
The 1950 Grill has a reduced menu. There are only four meal-swipe options for students, none of them vegetarian friendly. Eat, the Ballston campus restaurant, is the same way. What used to be a broad range of cuisine and rotating menu has dwindled down to just four or so options, all non-vegetarian. I feel unwelcome when I pay
so much for this school and am limited to the dining hall and their very specific and sometimes limited hours. This is not just a problem for me as a vegetarian, but also for my roommate, who cannot eat gluten. Foods are not labeled with their allergen warnings here, so she does not know what she can and cannot eat with certainty.
When I moved into my dorm apartment for the academic year, I had no dressers. No TV. No wifi. No chair in the living room. It took weeks of inputting requests to finally receive all of the things that were promised within our contract. This was due to the sheer number of problems within the building. There were too many maintenance requests, too many people in the building, and not enough staff to handle and address the problems. Students like me don’t even see the benefits from increased tuition! There have been budget cuts all across campus. Almost every club and activity I have heard about has experienced some sort of budget cut, severely limiting the things that can be done on campus. The offices, like the one I work in, must now tighten up hours as student workers.
There is a problem at Marymount University.
I cannot eat at the campus restaurants. I barely make it to Ballston because of the limited shuttle schedule and space. I struggle to find offices that are constantly moving without warning. I almost did not receive federal aid for the year because I was never told of the true credit requirements. I had my internship application withdrawn on the day of its deadline because I was not told that my resume and cover letters had to be approved. The problem lies not in these individual errors, but that the school doesn’t care about how the students are affected by them.
If they did care, wouldn’t they be trying to fix them?
There is no one to blame for these problems at Marymount. Part of me wishes there was, that there would be someone for me to send all of my complaints to, someone to get mad at. But there is no one to blame for the way that Marymount has changed. These changes have simply… happened. I am disappointed. I want to call this school my home. I want to be proud of what is soon to be my alma mater. But I can’t. I can’t feel proud of a school that does not care for the wellbeing of its students.