Activity Fee FAQs
Please note: Due to the ongoing global pandemic and the fact that many courses will be taught remotely this winter, The Graduate School will not charge a Winter Quarter activity fee for full-time students and will not activate any U-Passes for the Winter Quarter unless you choose to opt in.
If you are a full-time student and plan to use your U-Pass transit card during the Winter Quarter, please complete this opt-in form. We will activate your U-Pass, and a Winter Quarter activity fee of $125 will be applied to your student account. Please note, the Winter Quarter begins on Monday, January 3 and ends on Monday, March 28.
If you already have a U-Pass, your Winter Quarter U-Pass benefits will be activated on Monday, January 11 (or on the next business day after you opt in). If you do not already have a U-Pass, one will need to be issued. Please ensure that your photo has been submitted to the Wildcard Office and that your current address is up to date in CAESAR, then fill in the opt-in form. You will then be provided the option to have your U-Pass card mailed to you or to pick up your card by appointment at The Graduate School's Evanston office located in the Rebecca Crown Center. If you choose to pick up your card, appointments will be available after the Winter Quarter Wildcat Wellness period ends on Monday, January 17.
All TGS eligible students will retain access to TGS Legal Services, which is also covered by the quarterly activity fee.
Read the full message from TGS Associate Director, Student Life, Lauren-Ashley Buchanan, PhD.
What is the activity fee?
What does the activity fee cover?
The activity fee helps offset the cost of services that are requested by graduate students and funded by The Graduate School (TGS). This includes:
Who is charged the activity fee?
Students enrolled full-time (at least three units) in The Graduate School (TGS) are charged the activity fee. The activity fee is not covered by a TGS student's funding package, and students are responsible for paying the fee.Students enrolled in the Online Master of Arts in Counseling Program through The Family Institute, TGS 512 (continuous registration), TGS 514, or a co-op internship are not charged for the activity fee and are not eligible for the services it provides during the quarter(s) in which they are enrolled in any of these categories.
How much is the activity fee?
I am taking a leave of absence. Will I be charged the activity fee?
Medical Leave of Absence: Students taking a medical leave of absence are not charged the activity fee during the quarter(s) they are on leave.
Family Leave of Absence: If a student takes a family leave of absence and receive funding, they will be charged the activity fee. If the student does not receive funding during their family leave of absence, they are not charged the student activity fee.
Parental Accommodation: A student receiving parental accommodation is charged the activity fee during the quarter(s) they receive accommodation.
General Leave of Absence: Students taking a general leave of absence are not charged the activity fee during the quarter(s) they are on leave.
How do I pay my activity fee?
Why can't the activity fee be automatically deducted from stipend payments?
What happens if I forgot to pay my activity fee on time?
How are late fees accrued?
A late fee is applied to all student accounts with an outstanding balance of $500 or more. A $200 late fee is applied every quarter with no cap until the balance is paid. Upon request, one late fee may be waived by contacting Student Finance.
Can I opt out of the activity fee?
Activity Fee Waiver
What is an activity fee waiver?
How do I qualify for an activity fee waiver?
TGS students who are enrolled full-time (at least three units) in eligible courses and are studying abroad or living outside of the Chicago area for the duration of an academic quarter(s) are eligible to request that their activity fee be waived for that quarter(s). However, an activity fee waiver form must be submitted before the start of the quarter or within three weeks of the first day of the quarter for the fee to be waived for the current quarter. All waiver requests require program approval and TGS will contact students if the waiver is approved. Once the activity fee is waived and a credit is applied to a student’s account for that quarter, students will not be eligible for the services it provides that quarter, including U-Pass.
What quarters can I apply for an activity fee waiver?
TGS students may apply for an activity fee waiver for the current quarter up to three weeks after the first day of the quarter begins. This time frame enables TGS to remove these students from the active U-Pass list supplied to Ventra, our U-Pass provider, and not pay for unused transit cards. At the time of the request, a waiver may be submitted for the current quarter, plus one or more of the next three consecutive quarters with program approval. This enables TGS to apply a credit to the student’s account at the same time the activity fee is charged, minimizing out-of-pocket expenses and potential late fees.