Students gathered to protest a proposed 5 percent increase in tuition across the California State University system today, during a two-day CSU Board of Trustees meeting at the Long Beach Chancellor’s Office headquarters.
The protesters staged a “die-in,” using depictions of headstones, stating that any increase would “force more students to drop out of college.”
The students, who first gathered at 6:00AM today, also plan on protesting tomorrow, according to the statewide student coalition dubbed Students for Quality Education (SQE).
While the board is not scheduled to take any action on a tuition hike this week, they are scheduled to make a presentation on the subject through the CSU system’s 2017-18 Support Budget Request to the state.
The possibility of such an increase was first suggested by the CSU in September, and officials have since met with the California State Student Association (CSSA) and other groups affected by the potential changes.
The increase could hike in-state undergraduate tuition from $5,472 a year to $5,742, generating up to $77.5 million in revenue statewide, according to a report prepared by CSU Financial Officer Steve Relyea and Assistant Vice Chancellor Ryan Storm
“Coupled with similar proposed maximum increases to non-resident tuition, as well as graduate, doctoral and teacher-credential programs, the potential increase would generate new revenue in 2017-2018 to partially support the board's priorities,'' the report stated.
SQE maintained the changes would not be a viable option, given the quality of life of many students in the CSU system.
“Students are already suffering from homelessness, hunger and fair access and affordability to their higher education,'' the group said. “Tuition increases are not an option, as students and members of SQE are advocating.''
City News Service contributed to this report.