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ERIC Number: EJ845992
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Mar
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1553-7544
The Revenue vs. Service Balance
Savarese, John
Campus Technology, v19 n7 p52-54, 56, 58, 60 Mar 2006
Ten years ago, students at the University of Vermont (UVM) had to carry separate ID cards, meal cards, and athletic cards. Today, the single CATcard combines all of these functions, plus library privileges, an optional declining balance program called CAT$cratch, access to computer labs, use of vending machines without quarters, and even a ride on the campus or city buses. Still, UVM is one of many schools that have felt the need to explore whether a comprehensive campus card program is indeed a money-maker or an ongoing expense. The UVM CATcard brought convenience and added value to students' daily lives, and efficiencies to the university's operations. But operating the card program also costs money. As a state institution, UVM was not permitted to charge students for their initial card, nor is the card operation supported out of the general university budget. So when the CATcard program needed to find ways to support itself and to pay back its $250,000 seed-money loan from the university, it began to look off campus for revenue sources. This article describes how campuses are finding imaginative ways to generate revenue from campus cards to offset the costs of providing convenience and service. The author contends that in the end, whether an institution outsources or self-operates its card program, expands it aggressively, or keeps it simple, the key to managing a campus card program is to keep the larger picture in mind. With or without the built-in revenue to offset the expense of the program, ultimately, a card program will succeed if it makes campus life better for students.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Louisiana; North Carolina; Vermont; Virginia