March 1, 2011
Huddled in a drum circle in CSUMB’s main quad, a team of student activists from the organization Students for Quality Education will discuss proposals for dealing with affordable, accessible, and higher quality education at The Education Action Now statewide day of action on Wednesday afternoon.
The activists will use these suggestions to inform administration about student concerns and what changes they want.
“We want to get the students out and get them thinking,” says Elise Esquenazi, student promoter.
This list of requests attempts to help CSUMB “serv[e] the diverse people of California, especially the working class and historically undereducated and low-income populations.”
These suggestions include:
Place a link to an itemized and detailed campus budget breakdown on the front page of the school website. This allows students, faculty and staff to see where money goes and how much the school is spending on each department.
Allow students to display art throughout the campus, especially the art of Visual and Pubic Art Majors. Right now their art is neither visual nor public.
Eliminate mandatory meal plans for students who live on campus. As of now, students living on campus have no choice but to purchase a yearly meal plan.
Extend library hours. Move towards opening the library 24 hours a day.
Eliminate corporate/private franchises on campus (specifically Sodexo, University Corporation/Foundation, Pete’s Coffee and Tea, Barnes and Noble). Hire all current Sodexo employees directly.
Do not implement a mandatory Early Start program. (A system wide program that forces transfer students to take remedial classes the summer/winter before they enroll in the fall/spring semester). This puts a financial burden on students. Mandating the Early Start program would “disproportionately affect the students that the vision mentions,” says Esquenazi. Instead, students want to continue the offering of remedial courses during the regular school year.
Ideally, the students want to revert to the original model of the CSU and UC system when
higher education tuition/fees were free or low-cost for Californians. (Master Plan of 1960).
“Tuition increases and classes being cut are affecting me personally,” says Esquenazi. “I’m not the only one that has to work at least one job to afford my education.”
The protest hopes to attract at least 50 students. Although administration is welcome to come, Esquenazi says, “We want the majority of voices to be student voices.”
Education Action Now takes place Wednesday, March 2 at 11:30am to 2:00pm at CSUMB’s main quad. Call Elise Esquenazi at 408.460.7433.