Haven Card ‘convenience’ found lacking

By Meghan Dashe
Staff Writer

November 29, 2012

Students at LHU have recently been introduced to a new way to receive their refund checks. Previously, checks would be mailed home to students via a paper check, but not anymore. Students can still opt for the old option, but are strongly encouraged to utilize the new “Haven Card”.

Sponsored by the company Higher One, the Haven Card is now the fastest way to receive your refund, so the Student Financial Services office says. Brenda Lowery, who handles many of the refunds dealing with the new Haven Card says that “students can receive refunds in 3 ways, deposits to your LHU Haven Card, transferred directly to an existing bank account, or receive a physical check”.  Lowery also states, that taking the third option of a physical check takes the longest to process, and that they are trying to persuade students to forgo this method an utilize the Haven Card.

Photo courtesy of lhup.edu

The Haven Card works just like any normal credit/debit card, but there’s something they don’t tell you. Senior and physical education major Katlin Doolan said that after using her Haven Card a few times, she went online to check her account balance. “I had a fee after every time I used it as a debit. There was a $.50 fee on top of my purchase” Doolan states. Even though they request you to make a PIN number when activating your card, they don’t inform you that it charges you if you use it as a debit. Jillian Weidner a Senior and Social Work major had a similar issue with this card. “Even though this is supposed to be the faster method, it still took over 2 months for my refund to process and be put on my Haven Card”.

One tradeoff the Higher One Company receives for Lock Haven allowing this to be the primary refund method is that those who have the card are bombarded with emails on a weekly basis about referring the company to friends, receiving bonuses, signing up for other Higher One credit cards, etc. In addition, if you want to withdrawal money from an ATM from this account, there’s only one on campus, located in the Library. When students return home for holiday breaks, they have to use ATMs that aren’t sponsored by Higher One, resulting in a $2.50 charge to their account, on top of any fee that may apply from the ATM. Although this refund method may have good intentions and a new way for students to receive their refunds, there still seem to be many kinks that need to be worked out first.

Meghan Dashe is a senior majoring in communication. She can be contacted at mdashe@lhup.edu.


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