“I support the demand of eliminating the student income contribution.  

I was very thankful that Yale extended the DSA this summer, as my original plans were canceled due to the COVID-19 situation.  The summer 2020 expansion of the DSA allowed me to take two classes so I can enter into senior year with fewer credit requirements, creating a healthier and more balanced environment for me to focus on my senior thesis and other responsibilities.  Unfortunately, I have not been able to find a job due to the pandemic and I have been reaching into my savings originally budgeted for the SIC to cover expenses.  This has caused me to consider taking out additional loans to cover my SIC and help with my family contribution.  However, once the announcement for academic year 2020/2021 was released, I realized the few options presented by the administration are even more limited due to my financial situation.  

I do not feel comfortable committing to a term or year of online classes, and that discomfort stems from many factors.  First of all, the quality of education isn’t comparable, and tuition has not been reduced to reflect that reality.  Next, due to uncertainty surrounding on-campus employment and the new tone deaf policy regarding existing employment if students decide to take a leave of absence, leaving my home and returning to campus/New Haven is not an option.  If I do not have secure employment, both to pay for my SIC and to support myself during the year, I cannot leave my home.  Thankfully, I am very lucky to have a safe and supportive home, I know many of my classmates do not.  Another reason I will most likely not enroll in remote online classes in the fall is that though my home is supportive, it is not an environment conducive to the level of focus and stress a full online course load and thesis project would entail.  My hands are tied, I am forced to take time off because I cannot meet these requirements and preserve my health and safety.

I know Yale has the resources which would allow for the elimination of the SIC; especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is added urgency.   This global phenomenon has already affected the poor/BIPOC/and other vulnerable communities disproportionately.  At Yale, these are the students who receive financial aid.  These are the students who pay the SIC.  This university has already demonstrated they are committed to assisting their students in times of crisis and financial uncertainty through expanding this summer’s DSA.  Eliminating the SIC is the next logical step.”

Elea Hewitt, she/her/hers, 2021, Branford