New $30 Charge for Computer Services

Jaden Vander Berg- Staff Writer

Another year has begun and students, along with their electronic devices, have come pouring onto campus.  For over half of the student body, this isn’t their first year at Dordt.  Since computer services has been in operation, they have offered free computer and technology repairs; however, as of July 1, 2016, they will be charging a $30 evaluation fee for all student computer repairs.

This announcement has caused campus-wide outrage, with students now debating if they will still be using the service.

Sophomore Haley Wilting used computer services multiple times last year for issues with both her computer and her phone.  She said it was nice to know there was some place that could help her out with minor problems.  But with the addition of a fee, Wilting said she will no longer bring her laptop in.

“Thirty dollars is a lot of money, especially as a college student.  The money could go towards one of my nursing textbooks, instead of having [computer services] look at little issues,” Wilting said.

In his three years of working for computer services as a student workstudy, senior David Te Krony said most students bring their laptops in due to viruses.  On a busy week, they see around 10 laptops; on slower weeks, 3 or 4 come through the offices.

One proactive way that students can protect their computers and avoid taking them in, Te Krony says, is to “Avoid clicking on ads when online – that’s where a lot of viruses come from.  Make sure what you download is what you intended to.”

However, not every student has an issue with the extra fee. Senior Dylan Lundburg used computer services for the first time this year in order to improve the speed of his laptop. They removed some viruses and gave advice on installing a larger RAM to improve his speed.  Lundburg said the whole process was very quick and with in a few days he was emailed. He also mentioned that he had an extremely pleasant experience and will go there again if he ever needs anything – regardless of price.

“It’s quicker than lightning,” Lundberg says. “I have eight Random Access Memories [RAM] now and it’s great.”

Computer services is responsible for more than just fixing slow laptops and broken screens. They manage all of the computer labs and software, wireless internet throughout the campus, and maintain DCC and Canvas. Brian Van Donselaar, director of computer services, says that they never consciously decided to start repairing student computers; it was something that just happened naturally.  Over the years, repairs became more expensive and they began to spend tuition dollars to fix the computers.

“We decided to start charging for computer repair, and we use those funds to help us run that whole repair program,” said Van Donselaar.

Computer services is in the process of expanding the number of help guides already on DCC, which have been designed to help a student who doesn’t want to pay $30 so they can do the repairs on their own.  Guide topics range from removing a virus to installing a hard drive and more.

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