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Losing our faculties: Whatever. Students can afford higher tutition, right?

By DJ Kelly December 5, 2007

So as I said in a previous post the University of Calgary’s tuition is set to raise again this month. That will make 17 years of tuition hikes of more than twice the rate of inflation.

But here’s something to make you even more angry, turn green and destroy all the clothes you are wearing save your handsome purple pants:

For the first time in anyone’s memory anywhere the Students’ Union and Graduate Student Association have decided they will not lead protests. Instead they will sit idly on their hands and let the maximum legally allowed tuition hike of 6.3 percent go unchallenged.

WTF?!?

How can they say they are representing the best interests of their students if they don’t even oppose a tuition hike? If they were to do nothing else in office except one thing, wouldn’t you think that would be it?

Instead they say they will work with the Board of Governors to make sure the newly collected money is spent on – according to undergraduate president Julie Bogle – “better quality education”.

Uh-huh… And what exactly do you think they’ve been spending the previous increases on? Everything the University board does is to improve the education of students!!! I dare you to name one thing they spent money on that did not at least indirectly improve the quality of the education at UofC. Go ahead… No, no; I’ll wait.

Okay while those folks are off on that wild goose chase I’ll tell you what I think should happen: do BOTH. Crazy idea, huh?

Why can’t they be arguing for more directly student related spending AND protesting their tookus off? One doesn’t preclude the other! They need to get off their lazy asses and get a movement going. Make rational arguments in the boardroom AND show you have the student body behind you at a rally. Show them the impact tuition is having on students AND carry placards. Suggest viable alternatives AND have a tent city representing where student are going to have to live if something isn’t done NOW.

Either Julie Bogle and David Colletto and their vice presidents do this or they should probably get ready for the student body to start protesting them. Students may be apathetic most of the time but I’m not convinced they can take this kind of a slap in the face from their own ELECTED representatives. They may not be able to vote out the UofC Board of Governors but they certainly can fire them. And permanently harm any future political aspirations they may have in the process.