Comment from facebook group (please join):
I’m actually out of state, so raising the fee by 32% means that my tuition increases by $14,000. I’m also coming to UCSD on merit scholarships, no opportunity for cal grant or the new blue and white grant. If this increase passes, I can’t afford my last year of school.
The effect of the fee increase on out of state students is an issue that deserves more attention. As public universities continually lose state funding and march toward privatization, one of the goals is to enroll more out of state students who pay almost twice as much as in state students. However, imposing a 32% fee increase to get even more money out of these students is a plan that could very well backfire as these students are more likely to end up withdrawing from the university rather than paying $14,000 more to stay. A question that come to mind are: How do the Regents expect us to find the money in time?
This is injustice. The student who is accepted to a top notch research institution and is within only one more year of completing his/her degree should have the right to stay. The student has demonstrated their abilities, this should be the only qualifying factor. Increasing fees eliminates the right to education for these students.
In America, higher education is always framed as a privilege enjoyed by advanced nations who can afford to build colleges. The effect is to make people better appreciate their access to higher education, but also to justify its high cost. When California still adhered to the Master Plan of 1960, all students were able to pursue an education that was virtually free. In the 1960s, one semester at Berkeley only cost graduate students $75. Education is a right, not a privilege.
Further, raising fees for students slashes each principle of the UC education — Affordability, Accessibility, Quality — when the university is no longer affordable, it is no longer accessible to students who lack funds, this makes the quality of the university drop. If this trend continues the UC will start to look more and more like USC and Stanford, institutions filled with students who can afford to enjoy the “privilege” of education.
If we wanted to attend a private university we would have.
For a schedule of teach-ins at UCI, go the facebook group “Fight 32% Fee Increase!”
Please participate in writing letters to the UC Regents about how the fee increase will affect you and our university, you can drop them off at the ASUCI office. We will be delivering the letters next week during the Regents meeting.
We will also be taking people up to UCLA for public comment and protest while the Regents for on the fee increase on both Wednesday and Thursday of next week. For transportation info visit the facebook group or: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=riU_2fY_2fwxry5LldJgrCRWaw_3d_3d
Read more about the decline of higher public education in California: California’s higher education debable (LA Times)
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