Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass students organize teach-in event in attempt to decrease cost of enrollment

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In an attempt to decrease the cost of enrollment at the University of Massachusetts, several organizations at UMass are hosting a teach-in today featuring speeches from faculty, staff and students.

Zoe Mervine/ Collegian

“We don’t feel that the University of Massachusetts is upholding its original mission statement which says that (it) is supposed to be readily accessible to most of the people of Massachusetts, and with the rising of tuition and fees, it is not upholding that,” said Preston Davis, a senior at UMass and one of the organizers of the event.

Davis explained that the event, which will take place from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Cape Cod Lounge, will be divided into several topic sections, each consisting of multiple speeches. Following each section, there will be brief periods of group discussion. Some of the topics that will be a part of the teach-in include the privatization of higher education, access for underrepresented students and student power.

CLICK HERE to listen to Mission Still Unaccomplished event coverage by WMUA News.

According to Davis, one of the most important topics at the event will be about shared governance, meaning more cooperation between the university and the students. Davis believes that “students should have a direct line to decision making” and should “share the table with administration.”

Davis added that there will be speeches by professors, such as Dan Clawson, professor of sociology, and even one by Jill Stein, former Green Party presidential candidate. But the majority of the presentations will be given by students.

Davis hopes that many students will attend the teach-in and that it will “inspire them to get more involved in civic engagement” as well as encourage them to “join some the organizations that are organizing (the event).”

Video Highlights: Mission Still Unaccomplished Teach-In from Daily Collegian on Vimeo.

Additionally, Davis and the other organizers are hoping that this teach-in will allow them to gather the people necessary to host a larger event in the spring.

This is the second year that the teach-in has occurred. Davis said that last year’s event went really well, and that about 500 students showed up. He added that the topics at this year’s event are nearly identical to the ones last year.

However, Davis still believes that the mission of UMass is unaccomplished. He “still (doesn’t) think that we have direct control over decisions that directly affect students.”

Sophomore Liam Gude agrees with Davis, and thinks that the “tuition and fees should be lowered” and that “students need more power and more voice (on campus).”

Nikoleta Nikova can be reached at [email protected]

2 Comments

2 Responses to “UMass students organize teach-in event in attempt to decrease cost of enrollment”

  1. Luke on November 16th, 2013 2:53 pm

    Help protect the grad students from the abuses of the UMass administration. Please sign and share this petition demanding that UMass pay its workers on time:

    http://www.change.org/petitions/umass-amherst-pay-all-workers-on-time

  2. N. on November 18th, 2013 3:18 pm

    I think the issues addressed here are obvious and universal. What i don’t think is clear is what the SGA or anyone else is proposing to do about it…

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