“Million Student March” surfaces on college campuses

Energized by recent activity on college campuses, students at over 100 colleges and universities across the nation walked out of class on Thursday to protest in favor of more affordable education.

Labeling their application of power the “Million Student March,” the dissent over rising tuition and student debt is closely related to fresh calls among college students for the removal of university administrators over alleged refusals to address ostensible race-related incidents on several college campuses.

Among their demands:  Free tuition at public universities; the retirement of all student debt; and a $15 minimum wage for all campus workers.

Approximately 70 percent of college students rely on loans to meet tuition costs; many graduate with an average $29,000 debt.

Assisting the student protests is the Student Labor Action Project (SLAP), an organization affiliated with labor unions and in coalition with Jobs with Justice.

“The problems of skyrocketing college costs and low wages are linked together and result in poor economic mobility for people who graduate with the burden of student debt.  The march is about mobilizing students across the country to shape the national conversation about what college costs look like today, especially in an age of student debt, low wages and high tuition,” stated Beth Huang, national coordinator for SLAP.

A college degree is not a cure all.

Those who undertake the task of completing a college education must consider the financial toll and be willing to accept the encumbrance of debt.

If, in estimation, the possibility of becoming over-leveraged is too demanding and rests beyond their level, it is incumbent upon a potential student, however intellectually gifted, to weigh alternatives to college.

Like all things human, the notion of “free” education, housing, healthcare and guaranteed jobs is imperfect, frustrating, and fraught with failure.

Because college students are easy targets, organizations such as SLAP and Jobs for Justice, one of which has deep ties to labor unions, infiltrate our cultural institutions and disrupt harmony and learning to advance their political itinerary, particularly an increase in hourly wages.

The aspirants in this campaign are lost while confronting idealism versus realism. 

 

[Washington Post] [New York Times] [jwj.org] [studentlabor.org] [Photo courtesy Huffingtonpost.com]