The move to online courses for the spring 2020 semester has cost the University of Virginia about $300,000, according to Wes Hester, the university’s director of media relations and deputy spokesperson. This money has gone towards increasing storage space and obtaining licenses for the online platforms for virtual instruction — Zoom and Panopto. The increase in spending also provides faculty and staff laptops so they can teach remotely.
Additionally, with most students now living at home, the university has issued roughly $18 million in refunds to students for unused housing and dining costs. The university directly funded $12 million of those refunds, while Aramark — the company that provides most of the university’s dining services — absorbed the remaining $6 million. However, the University decided not to refund tuition for this semester.
“Students are continuing in their classes and earning full credit for the semester’s work,” Hester told The Cavalier Daily. “Tuition and fees continue to pay for the faculty’s delivery of instruction, as well as all the associated costs with educational delivery.”
This story has been updated.