CSUN students, faculty, staff and outside community will host a day of action on Thursday, March 4 to protest against budget cuts.
The event, which is being sponsored by various organizations including the California Faculty Association (CFA), A Coalition of Students and Teachers (C.O.S.T), United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), California Teachers Association (CTA) and Students for Quality Education (SQE) will display a variety of demonstrations throughout the day.
“It’s in response to budget cuts” said Jessica Baty, member of C.O.S.T and part-time communications professor. “It’s students and teachers from the CSU, UC and community colleges. All these people are joining together and sort of making a statement, making it visual, our pain and suffering”.
Layoffs and the increase in tuition are some of the things that will be talked about during the event.
Baty said CSUN’s event will be part of a statewide day of action and that while it will only mostly be in California, 18 other states across the country have also joined.
“We want to bring our struggles out into the community, out into our region for not only voters that are students and teachers here, but those that are surrounding, that are going to be either voting for or against putting money back into education” said Baty. “So we want to bring that word out into our communities and have this be visual not only for students that are feeling it, but people that might not even know what’s going on in their backyard”.
The CSUN community both on and off campus is highly encouraged to participate.
“We really just want to encourage everyone on campus and off campus to participate”.
Baty said those who want to participate, can do so at any level.
“If protesting is not really your thing, there’s all kinds of other ways that you can be involved in the event. If you have a compelling story, or if you feel passionate about having an education and having it not taken away from you, we really want everyone to be a part of that”.
CSUN student Tenesha M. Sanders, 22, communication studies major, who will participate in the event said she will do so because she is tired of the fee hikes.
“It sucks” she said.
Sanders receives financial aid so budget cuts have not affected her other than preventing her from getting into classes.
“So I am going to be here longer than I really want to be”.
CSUN student Emelie Castillo, 21, communication studies major also plans to attend the event and likes the idea of CSUN hosting it.
“I think it’s incredible because I haven’t heard any other school that is doing it so I think this is a great opportunity, to bring people together and show that aren’t ok with what is going on and that we’re concerned about our future and about our education” she said.
Castillo also expressed concern about not being able to add the classes she wants to.
“I am not able to get the classes that I used to” she said. “I go try to add a class and there’s like 15, 20 kids trying to add the same class and I was supposed to graduate in four years and now I have to stay here for another semester so I’ll be here for 4 1/2 years and that’s if I get my classes. So I’m not even sure if I’m going to graduate in 4 1/2 years, it might be five and that wasn’t my plan originally. It’s not because I’m failing classes, it’s not because I’m being lazy, it’s because I can’t get the classes I need”.
Baty said the day’s goal is “to make the is to make the struggle visual because students and teachers are struggling, and we know that but does everyone know? We want that struggle to be apparent and for people to see it and to respond to it and hopefully act on it”.