Students Protest University Of California Tuition Hikes

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Angry students protested yesterday at University of California campuses across the state, after the university system's Board of Regents approved tuition hikes. University of California president Janet Napolitano's plan calls for up to 5 percent tuition increases each year for the next five years.

Gov. Jerry Brown voted against the proposal and offered an alternative plan to save money, including online classes and three-year degrees. The new tuition increases would be waived if Governor Jerry Brown and the state legislature approve more funding for the UC system.

Sadia Saifuddin, a UC Berkeley senior and the student regent on the University of California Board of Regents, tells Here & Now's Robin Young why she voted against the tuition hikes. She thinks the governor is not doing enough to support California college students.

Interview Highlights: Sadia Saifuddin

On why she voted against tuition increases

''I feel like the state and the UC has really let down students. A couple of months ago, we had our chancellor increases, which I actually voted for because I believe it takes a certain kind of person to manage our universities; but at the same time almost at every regents’ meeting we are confirming salaries upwards of $300,000 for administrators who, if they were doing the same job at the state level or at some other non-profit, would be making a lot less.''

On whether students should share more of the cost burden

''It’s hard because you already have low-income students who wouldn’t be able to attend the university, so to ask them to pay for their own tuition, which they can’t do, plus that of others is a little ridiculous. At the same time, we wouldn't be in that situation of asking students to share the burden if the state had continued investing in UC.''

On what Janet Napolitano could do to alleviate the budget crunch

''I would say develop a strategy for long-term for administrative pay, and double your efforts in lobbying at the governor’s office.''


  • Sadia Saifuddin, senior at the University of California, Berkeley, and student regent on the University of California Board of Regents.

This segment aired on November 21, 2014.


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