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A worldwide crisis of losing quality higher education

-Marissa Cumbers, "Fighting for an Unkept Promise," The State News, Nov. 19,2009.
-American Studies fights for survival at Michigan State University.

Statement of Solidarity from Michigan State University

In deep appreciation and support of the statement of solidarity by students at the University of the Ryukyus and the Project Disagree (http://loudaisei.seesaa.net/article/134161604.html), we, concerned students of Michigan State University, stand in solidarity with you and our comrades at the university campuses in California, who are in constant struggle against budget cuts and other related restructuring. California ranks highest in terms of tuition hikes, elimination of programs and departments, termination of lecturers and adjunct faculty followed by Michigan. At Michigan State University the elimination of various programs and departments is quite quizzical given the very profitability of the aforementioned in your statement. In the current state of higher education that is in the hands of bureaucrats “restructuring” institutions of higher learning, we never get fooled by jargon replacing “reform,” “downsizing,” and “streamlining.” Administrators, in the name of “transparency,” regulate voices of dissent to public comment, while those in power “listen” to us while talking on cellphones or falling asleep. Don’t be fooled by this gesture of “inclusion.” The message is clear. We see through the bullshit and know the administration’s plan to axe all non-tenure, adjunct, and graduate assistant lines to maximize profits.
This is precisely why we have been engaged in on-/off-campus demonstrations, picketing, and town hall meetings, to create time and space to counter such outrageous decisions made by the corporate-minded administration. In Michigan, we are not alone in our struggle. To oppose their own universities’ restructuring plans, as well as the state of Michigan’s recent legislative decision to cut an unprecedented 61% budget for higher education and to discontinue the $140 million Michigan Promise Scholarship that has been aiding a tremendous number of in-state students; concerned students at such universities as Wayne State, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, and the University of Michigan have been conducting similar struggles in solidarity all over the state. We have been building coalitions with each other, and we will continue to do so by uniting with people in California, Okinawa, and elsewhere. What we are facing now is not only a nationwide crisis but also a worldwide crisis of losing quality higher education. We must act right here, right now, to raise our united voices of protest.

November 30, 2009

Concerned Students at Michigan State University
Gabriela Alcázar
Clinton MacKenzie Brauer
Darren Lee Brown
Jesse Draper
Xavier Gonzalez
Sam Inglot
Kevin Lynch
Ernesto Todd Mireles
Fumiko Sakashita
Morgan Shipley
Lila Mo Wakeman

 私たちミシガン州立大学学生有志は、琉球大学学生有志および合意してないプロジェクトによる声明文 (http://loudaisei.seesaa.net/article/134161604.html)に深い謝意と賛同を示し、経費削減やその他の大学再編との闘いのただなかにいるあなたがたとカリフォルニア州各地の大学の同志との連帯を表明します。カリフォルニア州とミシガン州は、授業料値上げ、学部・学科廃止、専任・非常勤教員の解雇において全米で一、二位を占めています。あなたがたが声明の中で指摘している収益性そのものを考えると、ミシガン州立大学における様々な学部・学科の廃止はきわめて不審なものです。大学教育の現状が高等教育機関を「再編」する官僚主義者たちに委ねられる中で、「改革」「縮小」「合理化」などの用語にすり替えられる専門用語に私たちは惑わされない。大学の経営陣は「(手続きの)透明性」という名目をかざしながら反対者の意見を取り締まり、その一方で上層部は携帯を片手に、あるいは居眠りをしながら私たちの話を「聴く」のです。このような見せかけの「組み入れ」の態度に騙されてはいけない。その意味するところは明らかです。任期付教員、非常勤教員、大学院生のあらゆる教職を奪って最大限の利益を上げようとする経営陣のもくろみが、このようなたわごとを通して私たちには見えているのです。