About 20 students at Rutgers University have taken over the administration building to protest tuition hikes and the anti-democratic decision-making of the Board of Governors (like the UC Regents). They've released the following demands:
1. We want President McCormick to FREEZE tuition so Rutgers students do not have to take out excessive loans to pay for a PUBLIC education.Police are in the building and are apparently preventing friends and supporters from sending food and water into the building, but protesters say that at least nobody will be arrested tonight. Follow their Twitter feed here and send solidarity messages to their email address: keepRUpublic@gmail.com.
2. We want SCHOLARSHIPS for underprivileged / first generation college students.
3. We want Rutgers to provide FREE transcripts for its undergraduate students.
4. We want support for the rights of ALL University affiliated workers.
5. We want the Rutgers University population to have a voice in decisions made by the Board of Governors—INCLUDING TUITION COST! THREE voting Student Members, ONE voting Staff Member, ONE voting Faculty Member—all elected by their respective constituencies: NO APPOINTEES!
[Update Wednesday 9:56 pm]: Protesters are still in the building. The New York Times has an article up. Here's the key quote:
Last year, a cap limited the increase in tuition to 4 percent, but this year, public colleges are likely to have the ability to set their own rates, meaning the rise could be higher. At a recent legislative budget hearing, [Rutgers President Richard L.] McCormick predicted that tuition increases at the state’s public colleges would be less than 10 percent.
The Rutgers University Board of Governors typically sets tuition and fee rates in July, after the State Legislature has determined the state budget and financial support for higher education.