New printing service leaves students with questions

Ashlyn Peterson, CONTRIBUTOR

If you still have money on your printing account at the end of the school year, you won’t be getting a refund.

Sherrie Cooke, operator and customer service representative at the Roblin Centre Print Shoppe, said the college gives students a credit each term based on their program and year of study.

Todd Buchanan, director of ancillary services at Red River College said in an email that the credit the college gives to students is removed at the end of each term. If students have added money to their account, it carries over to the following term.

The printing software PaperCut was installed at RRC in August 2016. It replaced the previous software Equitrac. If students use all of the credit given to them, they have to reload their account with their own money.

Students can use PaperCut at any school printer that is installed on their computer. They are required to sign in to their PaperCut account before each printing job. Money is then subtracted from their account based on the number of pages they’re printing and the type of ink they’re using.

Buchanan said if students are graduating with money left on their account, it is available for 180 days before it’s transferred to the college. He encourages students only add money to their account to cover small printing jobs. RRC has stated on its Print Shoppe website that all printing credits are non-refundable.

Marisa Giesbrecht, a first-year graphic design student, said she’s never really thought about the money that’s on her PaperCut account. She said she thinks most students at RRC don’t have time to worry about it.

“I just assumed (RRC) could do whatever they wanted with the leftover money,” said Giesbrecht.

Calvary deJong, RRC’s Students’ Association vice-president external said he thinks this uncertainty could be an advocacy issue for the college.

DeJong said refunding the students’ money “is probably work or a hassle. In my view, the right thing is to give it back to students.”

But he compares the allotted money put on student accounts to the money each student pays for the gym.

“Students need to be aware of what’s available to (them) and use it,” said deJong.

Shaelynn Kowalchuk, 22, said the school never told her she had money on her PaperCut account, and she had never thought of checking. She has never used the college’s printers before and said her account has had zero dollars since her first day of classes.

“I’m getting [cheated],” said Kowalchuk.

The health care aid student said she and her classmates print at home because they don’t have the money to spend at school.

“Why would I give the school my money?” asked Kowalchuk. “They didn’t give me any.”

Buchanan said credits are provided to students based on the demands of each program. The amounts update based on input from each program.