I've been absent from the blog for a couple weeks, focusing on seeing an event on campus happen.

March 4th was a National Day of Action, with 32+ states participating in some sort of action against the rising costs of education. In California, students climbed up on billboards, blocked freeways, and said "enough is enough." But what has happened to California over the past several years has happened to Massachusetts too, just much much slower. So why, when California holds a protest, do thousands of students show up, while at Umass Lowell, when an event happens, only 50 students show up? As our Dean of Students put it, "If we went to the dorms right now, we'd find another 200, 300 students playing video games."

My fellow organizers and I considered ourselves to be unique as campus organizers because we had gotten Faculty and Administration to join hands with the Students and hold a summit outlining the problems with higher education. We planned tirelessly, staying up to all hours of the night this week to see this event pull through. All we asked of our professors and administrators was that they help us promote the event. Dean Siegel assured us that the event would be publicized, and yet no emails went out, nothing was posted in Umass Lowell Today, and all our fliers were torn down.

And still, after a meeting with Chancellor Meehan where he promised to Champion this issue and to be the key note speaker at the event, he showed up 30 minutes late and walked out on 50+ plus students, professors, and families that had come to learn and share their stories....For a Basketball Game (Which we won actually, go UML!).

I woke up this morning feeling betrayed and hurt by our Chancellor and I can only hope that he will reconsider his priorities in the future.

Here is the video that was shown during the summit:

The Rising Cost of Education at UMASS Lowell from Ali Lipman on Vimeo.


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