In response to increasing costs and demand, the Fleishman Center for Career and Professional Development is proposing an increase in the career resource fee for all students for the 2019-20 academic year.

The increase, which would raise the fee from $13 to $25, is intended to alleviate a staffing deficit, improve current programs and allow the Center to offer new services.

According to Denise Lorenzetti, director of the Center, current staffing levels have hit a saturation point as a result of significant growth in student population and program offerings. Lorenzetti wrote in an email that the decision to propose a raise was based on a data-driven approach, designing the increase to help the Center achieve its goals of ably serving the student body.

“Increasing the current fee for undergraduates by $12 per semester will allow the Fleishman Center to cover expenses so we can continue to offer our current services while also enhancing and increasing services to students,” Lorenzetti wrote. “We use a data-driven decision-making approach to ensure we serve our students to the best of our ability.”

The Center, which establishes programs to increase post-graduation full-time employment and graduate school acceptance rates, would focus on expanding the pipeline for job and internship opportunities, diversifying employer bases to connect more students with potential jobs and broadening alumni reach to assist students with professional development and networking. Additionally, the fee will allow the Center to provide and manage a central repository for student employment postings while increasing access to part-time jobs on and off campus.

Lorenzetti wrote that the raise would also continue the Center’s track record of providing resources and platforms tailored to students’ career interests, such as HireBING, uConnect, Vault, GoinGlobal and VMock.

“We are proud that we have transformed the Center from being relatively unknown in the library basement to a Center that offers students a high level of service, reflected in winning multiple awards,” Lorenzetti wrote. “When considering the ratio of career consultants to students and the large growth in programs we manage over the years, the fee is needed to cover expenses and maintain our track record of improvement.”

Sam Belkin, a junior majoring in business administration, said he believes the fee increase could contribute to student dissatisfaction regarding cost of attendance at Binghamton University, which includes 14 fees that fund multiple offices and programs on campus, such as University Athletics, Off Campus College Transport and the Student Association.

“Quite frankly, the Fleishman Center has an obligation to outline the tangible effects that more than 100 percent increase in fees would have on students,” Belkin said. “There has been a history of discontent among students for fees that seem to come out of nowhere and have little to no effect on student life.”

But others think the benefits to career development at the University could be worth the higher price tag. Joshua Korono, an undeclared freshman, said he thinks the Center’s proposal would be beneficial to students looking for expanded resources and greater connections.

“I think it’s a good move on behalf of the Fleishman Center,” Korono said. “The fee will result in an expansion of resources that will accommodate students in finding jobs and preparing for career development.”