Miles J Nevin, CSSA Director of University Affairs
March for Higher Education Brings 4,000 to the State Capital
Sacramento, CA, April 22, 2008 – On Monday the California State Student Association organized a major protest in response to the Governor’s proposed $386 million cut to the CSU system. CSSA was joined by students, parents, and teachers from the CSU, UC, and Community Colleges in marching from West Sacramento to the steps of the State Capitol. Over 4,000 protesters, mostly students, supported the historic March for Higher Education. A press conference on the capitol steps culminated the march.
As the passionate chants of over 4,000 people permeated the capitol building, many legislators were present to show their support. Lt. Governor Garamendi, Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, Assembly Members Anthony Portantino and Julia Brownley, Senator Pro Tem Don Perata and Senator Pro Tem-elect Darrel Steinberg all spoke on behalf of the students’ message.
That message is simple, according to Dina Cervantes, chair of the California State Student Association and organizer of Monday’s March for Higher Education. “Slashing the budgets of California’s colleges and universities will deny access to qualified students, result in increased fees and greatly limit the state’s ability to maintain an educated workforce – a critical component in ensuring a healthy economy.” Cervantes noted that raising fees amounts to nothing more than taxing students, a tool used to balance the budget on the backs of those who can afford it the least. Cervantes continued that “our state is increasingly funding the corrections system and decreasingly funding higher education; we are on our way to having world class prisons and second class universities.”
For every $1 invested in a CSU student there is a $4.41 return to the state economy. The purpose of CSSA’s March for Higher Education is to send a message to the Governor and Legislature that funding higher education is not a wasted expense, but an investment in the future of California.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008