A Look at Camp Dippikill’s First Rate Hike in A Decade
Earlier this year in an effort to increase revenue, the Dippikill Board of Directors raised the rates for all graduate students and university affiliates looking to book a stay at the Student Association-owned nature retreat while maintaining or lowering the previous rates for undergraduates.
The recent rate hike, the first in nearly a decade, has been in effect since July 1, and impacts only graduate students and those affiliated with the university, not students currently enrolled as undergraduates.
“That was very intentional,” said Dippikill Chair Casey Crandall regarding the decision not to increase rates for undergraduates. “Since we receive a lot of funding from the Student Association, we try to primarily focus on students and student groups.”
In maintaining the rates for undergraduates (in the case of White Pine Lodge, rates decreased from $700 to $600 per weekend), Crandall is hoping to attract more students to the Adirondack retreat.
“I want students to be up there as much as possible,” said Crandall, who went on to explain that he and the Board are reliant on SA to “help get as many students up” to Dippikill, thereby further increasing the retreat’s revenue stream.
As of writing, the Director of Dippikill Outreach position is vacant. When asked what SA’s marketing department is doing to reach out to the student body, Director of Marketing Darien Randolph refused comment, referring instead to the SA higher-ups.
President Jerlisa Fontaine and Vice President Madeeha Khan did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
According to Crandall, the new rate increases are expected to boost Dippikill’s overall revenue, reducing the retreat’s dependence on SA funding.
For the 2017-2018 fiscal year, SA has allocated just over $301,000 of its $2.6 million total budget for Dippikill, a decrease from last year’s $316,000 allocation.
Based on projections, Dippikill is expected to earn just over $180,000 this year, up from $161 thousand last year.
Under the new rates, which only apply to graduate students and university affiliates, a weekend at White Pine Lodge now costs $925, up from $870 previously; Nelson’s Farmhouse saw weekend rates climb to $975 from $870 previously. A weekend at Collins is now $500; Garnet $325; Birches $275 and Rita’s Lodge $250, up from $470, $280, $275, and $205 respectively. A weekend at either Twin Brooks or Fox Lair will now cost $125, up previously from $115.
“Given the resource that it is and given how it’s operated, I think the rates are pretty fair,” said Jarrett Altilio, Chair of the Student Association Senate. “I do like to hear that there’s this cognization of the fact that students can’t necessarily afford the higher rates like an alumni might be able to.”