September 30, 2009

After years, Knox cashes in on new ATM’s

Among the sights to greet students on campus this fall were something many had wanted for a long time: new ATMs.

“The old [ATMs] did not provide satisfactory service for our students,” said Tom Axtell, Vice President of Finance. “If they weren’t down, they wouldn’t give the correct amount [of money].”

Last year, much to students’ chagrin, the ATMs began breaking down three to four times every term.

“The life of a machine is five to six years,” explained Melody Diehl, who oversees loans and accounts payable. “We were on our seventh year with these.”

As the machines began breaking down nearly once a week, it was clear that they were on their last leg.

“They were workhorses and did a good job till the end,” Diehl said. “We just ran the lives out of the machines.”

Two new ATMs arrived on the Knox campus in time for fall term, but they, too, experienced problems from the start, as they appeared to quickly run out of money. However, this issue was quickly attributed to a programming error.

“The ATMs have two cassettes that hold money,” Axtell clarified. “One cassette would empty and the other one wouldn’t work, so machines would say ‘out of money’ when they were really half full. The irony about the new machines running out of money is that they didn’t.”

The problem has been resolved, and the ATMs are now operating correctly.

“The one in Post works great,” said freshman Lindsey Andersen. “I haven’t had any trouble with it at all.”

The new ATMs continue a Knox tradition of not providing service charges to students. Knox has also made agreements with several local banks to not charge transaction fees, including Wells Fargo. Diehl, however, advises that students check with their banks about fees.

“It depends on the bank,” she cautioned. “Many out-of-town banks might still have transaction limits or service charges.”

The new ATMs are located in Seymour Union and Post Lobby.

Anna Meier

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