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A student writes to Gov. Brown, voicing her concerns about budget cuts to the CSU. A student writes to Gov. Brown, voicing her concerns about budget cuts to the CSU.

Students Rally Against Budget Cuts

Associated Students organized a creative campaign to gain Gov. Brown’s attention.
By Lorena Nava Ruggero

With red dollar bills adorned with Gov. Jerry Brown’s face stacked high at an information table, San Diego State students rallied Monday against the $650 million in budget cuts to the California State University system.

Students wore black to mourn the cuts while speakers from Associated Students, University Senate and Student Affairs called on assembled students to take action.

‘Powerful voice’

“Students, let me tell you something – you are the most powerful voice on this campus,” said Vice President for Student Affairs James R. Kitchen. “Thirty-one thousand-plus of you is a very, very strong and powerful voice. So don’t be afraid and don’t be shy to take your voice to Long Beach and to Sacramento.”  

The rally, part of a statewide effort by the California State Student Association, was organized by Associated Students’ external affairs board and carried the theme, “The Buck Starts Here.” The Associated Students board created a mock $650-million bill, which includes an image of Gov. Brown, to represent the cuts to education. Students were encouraged to write messages on the back sides of the slips of paper and insert them into a Plexiglas box that will travel to all 23 CSU campuses.

The fake bills include a quote from Brown’s Oct. 21, 2010, campaign rally at SDSU. At that time, he said he would not make cuts to higher education.

Disappointed in Gov. Brown

Krista Parker, AS vice president of external affairs, said that she is disappointed with Brown’s cuts to the CSU system.

“Students came out in droves and voted for Brown on his promises to not make any more cuts to higher education,” said Parker.

“Understanding that he has been faced with a very challenging budget situation, we feel that cuts are being made in the wrong places – CSU graduates put money back into the state’s economy – that’s why we need to continue funding higher education.”

Other event speakers included:

  • Cody Barbo, president of Associated Students
  • Steven Dixon, CSU student trustee
  • Bill Snavely, chair of University Senate and director of the School of Communications

About Associated Students

Associated Students is an independent student-directed corporation that is one of the largest student governance organizations in the CSU system. As an affiliate of San Diego State University, the programs and facilities Associated Students manages are enjoyed by students, faculty, staff and the SDSU community.

Student Budget Rally
Nov. 7, 2011