Hundreds of student protesters at the University of California, Berkeley have occupied a main academic building on campus in response to steep tuition hikes expected to be passed by the board of trustees on Thursday.
If passed, the plan will increase tuition for the UC system up to 5% for each of the next five years. As The New York Times reports:
Under the plan, undergraduate tuition and fees for California residents would rise from $US12,192 a year to as much as $US15,560 in 2019-20.
Out-of-state students, who now pay more than $US35,000 in tuition and fees, could see those charges rise to nearly $US45,000. And those figures do not cover room and board, now about $US14,000 for all students.
Many current UC students are opposed to the price increase, and at Berkeley they have occupied Wheeler Hall — home to the university’s English department, as well as the largest lecture hall on campus.
The University of California system is one of the most expensive in the country, and the public colleges have notably seen large budget cuts over the last few years.
The occupation started Wednesday night, and has continued through Thursday:
Students are also protesting outside Wheeler:
Here are the protestors demands:
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