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Democratic Socialists at Columbia U. Demand to be Included in School’s Decisions About Spending

Democratic Socialists at Columbia U. Demand to be Included in School’s Decisions About Spending

“including measures to defund campus police and divest university endowments from fossil fuel companies and ICE”

The students are threatening to withhold their tuition of their demands are not met. Will anyone be surprised if Columbia caves to them?

The Nation reports:

We Want a More Democratic University—Until Then, We Won’t Pay

In an unprecedented mass action organized by the Columbia-Barnard Young Democratic Socialists of America, more than 2,500 students across Columbia institutions have committed to withholding their tuition if Columbia continues to ignore our demands, which advocate that students should be included in decisions over the university’s allocation of resources—not just as an educational institution, but as an employer and an international investor.

The movement at Columbia joins others across the country, most recently at the University of San Francisco and American University, that are employing the same tactics for the same ends, including measures to defund campus police and divest university endowments from fossil fuel companies and ICE.

In the spring, as Covid-19 overwhelmed the country, students nationwide launched tuition strikes to protest their institutions’ lack of resources, unchanged grading policies, and rising costs during the campus closures and economic downturn prompted by the pandemic. Now students are using tuition strikes to demand changes in their university’s allocation of resources and unfair practices largely, shifting their sights away from the temporary crisis of the pandemic and toward the many long-term, entrenched issues that they have been organizing around for decades now.

Columbia students have had a particularly difficult time negotiating with the administration. Ours was one of the schools that demanded a tuition reduction during the pandemic, with 8,500 students signing a petition. Unlike some of our peer institutions, Columbia refused.

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Comments

The Friendly Grizzly | December 11, 2020 at 9:34 am

Dear Democrat Socialists.

No.

-signed-

Dean T F Grizzly

Fat, entitled and stupid is no way to go through life, son.

I think it’s fair for students to perhaps pursue breach of contract action against the universities for failing to provide the education the students thought they were paying for due to outrageous coronavirus policies, but demanding a say in university budgeting? They’re customers, not shareholders. They can take their custom elsewhere, but the university’s well within their rights to boot them off campus for failure to pay tuition.

I’m actually in favor of this demand. Knowing the economic illiteracy of socialists, and their spending habits, Columbia University would have to close its doors in two years.

Hey, what’s not to like?

The students don’t have much leverage here. The University withholds degrees and transcripts for anyone with unpaid debts, even an overdue library fine. (Harvard threatened to withhold my degree for an erroneous $3 lunch fee.)

If these students don’t pay their tuition, Columbia should just let their standard procedure apply:

” You will be charged a late payment of $150 if you make your payment after the due date of the first term bill.
An additional charge of 1.5% of the balance due will be assessed per month on any amount past due thereafter.

FINANCIAL HOLDS

Additionally, if the balance on your student account is $1,000 or greater, your account will be placed on a financial hold prior to the start of registration for the subsequent term, and you will not be able to register until the balance is paid. Graduation holds are placed 30 days prior to the graduation date, and you will not be able to receive a diploma or transcript until the balance is paid. Registration and graduation dates are listed on the academic calendar.

Students with a past due student account balance may be prohibited from registering, changing programs, or obtaining a diploma or transcripts. The University may utilize the services of an attorney, collection agent, and/or its in-house staff to collect any amount past due. “

Somebody needs to remind these little self-important neo-communist fools that they are there to attend the school, not to run it. Also, isn’t ‘withholding tuition’ the same as withdrawing from school?

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