Pacific students pay a technology fee of around $230, per semester. According to US News, in the Fall of 2020, Pacific had about 1,758 students enrolled. If every student pays that technology fee to Pacific in their tuition, every semester, the total adds up to $404,304 and $808,608 for the year.
When I head to campus in the morning, I know I can expect to hear a phrase along the lines of “Is the WiFi working for you?” at least once that day, whether it be from a student or instructor. The amount of times I have given up on the WiFi and turned to use my own hotspot because it’s more reliable is laughable. It is a privilege I have, and I know that other students may not share the same luxury. Pacific needs to accommodate every student by making sure they are providing the quality of WiFi reception that we are all paying for.
This year I have taken the role as an editor on The Pacific Index, meaning I spend a lot of time in the Index office, located in the Walter basement. We often have to rely on the five computers in there due to the lack of WiFi connection to our own laptops. We understand that being in a basement under some residence halls might disrupt our connection every once in a while, but to know that my hotspot will give a better connection to a couple of laptops rather than Boxer Wireless, is when I start to wonder why that tech fee doesn’t guarantee that the WiFi will be reliable.
Now I’m not entirely sure how much money the school spends on tech a year, but, when a global pandemic came upon us, technology was one of the only ways that schools, in general, could continue to function somewhat normally. You would think that with such a big catastrophe that snuck upon us, institutions would take action to make sure that everyone has the same access to having a reliable connection for their assignments, classes, and meetings. So Pacific, what’s up with the WiFi? — Ashley Meza
Ashley Meza was born and raised in Portland and is a senior studying journalism. She is currently the student life section editor and hosts the Index Podcast. She holds the DACA Coordinator position at the Student Multicultural Center and enjoys making short films in her free time.