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Published July 25, 2012, 08:34 PM

State auditor's office questions the use of student fees at NDSU and UND

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- The state auditor's office is questioning the spending practices of both NDSU and UND, saying some student fees were misused. The report, just released, outlines expenditures. For example, NDSU spent $11,000 on a 1st class plane ticket to India using student fees.

By: Becky Parker, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- The state auditor's office is questioning the spending practices of both NDSU and UND, saying some student fees were misused. The report, just released, outlines expenditures. For example, NDSU spent $11,000 on a 1st class plane ticket to India using student fees.

Daniel Jordan says he sometimes wonders where his student fees are going.

Daniel Jordan - NDSU Student: "It needs to be more visible what they spend the money on."

NDSU used fees to pay an employee more than $20,000 in a separation agreement. At UND, graduate application fees bought iPads for employees. Most notably among NDSU students, an $11,000 first class plane ticket for a recruiting trip to India was purchased with graduate application fees.

The University system's director of internal audit says the actual purchases are not the problem.

Bill Eggert – Director of Internal Audiot: "The expenditures made with those fees are all legitimate expenses. It's just debatable on where the funding is coming from."

Fees are designated to go to certain areas. For example, application fees pay for application expenses. Some funds were difficult for the auditor's office to track, raising questions about organization and transparency. It has students worried that the fees they're paying aren't going where they should. Some think some of the expenses themselves are outrageous.

Daniel Jordan: "These are quite exorbitant amount of fees. You know, that's coming from my tuition."

Heather Otto - NDSU Student: "Probably money is being spent in certain areas, when it could be spent in a way that would benefit the students who are paying for it."

NDSU officials are withholding comment until they discuss the report at a Legislative Audit and Fiscal Review Committee meeting in Bismarck tomorrow.

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