Protestors occupy building on SFSU campus


The protestors told ABC7 that they targeted the business building to send a message that there won't be 'business as usual' on the campus and also because they say the business school was spared the drastic cuts that other programs like the College of Ethnic Studies department suffered.

It was a move that caught the administration by surprise. In the pre-dawn hours, 20 students barricaded themselves inside the business building and chained the doors.

It's a protest over the skyrocketing cost of education. San Francisco State received a $38 million budget cut from Sacramento this year and in turn hiked tuition 30 percent. These students believe they deserve to have a say in how the crisis is handled.

"Showing us where the money is being cut, where the money is going and to have the students involved," said a protestor.

They targeted the business building because that school has been spared drastic cuts that other programs like ethnic studies have suffered.

A business major was stopped when he tried to go to class. He was one of 3,200 students who found classes cancelled today, the week before finals.

"They're depriving me of an education. I've been assaulted. They threw coffee on me. They attacked me for trying to attend class," said business student Mike Veynberg.

"How else do you start a revolution? How else do you inspire everybody here to take part in a movement?" said Akasha Perez, a protestor.

The protestors have some faculty on their side.

"The Legislature and the governor are slashing our budget to the point that the system is not going to exist as an option for Californians," said associate professor Ramon Castellblanch, Ph.D.

It's becoming tough for Noorie Lal, a nursing student, to afford college. She supports the demonstration.

"I just hope it makes a change, you know, that something good is going to happen," she said.

So far there's no end in sight and no contact with the administration.

"The university has not yet tried to open a dialogue. We're going to monitor closely to ensure safety and well-being on campus," said university spokeswoman Ellen Griffin.

Griffin said business students who need to meet with their professors can go to the Towers Conference Room until 8 p.m.

As for the protestors, the ones inside say they have no plans to come out of the building, so right now it is a peaceful standoff.

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