Cal Poly students play dead to protest tuition hike

May 3, 2016

Cal Poly LargeCal Poly students participated in a “die in” Monday, symbolizing the death of the California State University system. The mock funeral followed a rally against tuition increases that CSU officials are proposing. [Tribune]

During the mock funeral, students gathered outside the administration building and placed a “coffin” on the ground for CSU Chancellor Timothy White. The protesters then lied down surrounding the coffin.

CSU administrators have called for “predictable and incremental” increases to tuition and student fees. The proposal could result in yearly tuition hikes, though the increases would not take effect this year or next year. CSU officials say the system’s current financial model is not sustainable and tuition increases are needed to cover budget gaps and uncertainties.

On Monday, CSU students held protests statewide against the proposed tuition increases. At the Cal Poly rally, students also protested a lack of funding for ethnic, gender and sexuality programs. Additionally, they called for eliminating student success fees and said Cal Poly is spending too much money on administrator pay.

CSU tuition has not increased over the last four years. However, the annual cost of tuition and fees at Cal Poly has increased from about $4,349 in 2006-2007 to about $9,000 in the current year.

Student protesters argue the CSU system is being privatized. State funding currently covers about 53 percent of the CSU’s operating costs, while tuition funds about 41 percent of the operating budget, and fees represent about 6 percent.


I would normally say if it’s free it’s worth nothing and add that earlier generations worked hard to earn their education but I won’t here. Higher education costs over the last few years and tuition costs have increased at an astronomical pace. Once again the federal government loan program has allowed tuition costs to rise. If it’s not your money you will spend it with little question. Now we are seeing what happens when people believe a lie that education can be free and divided up by bureaucrats. It can’t. But if you want to bring it back into reason financially you must do one thing; get the Feds out of it. Or else keep doing what we are doing now.


Wait until you get jobs and have to pay taxes to support all of these liberal programs you all cherish so much. Working people’s taxes make your tuition hikes look like pocket change.


Why worry, just get the biggest student loan you can, live it up for four years, and vote in Democrats who will pay off the loans for you.


You pretty much nailed it. Make it somebody else’s problem…disgusting what this once great nation has become.


Top-heavy is part of the problem. The other part is that the top-heavy admin is corrupt. The admin says they don’t have enough money, but, they have enough expand their ranks and give themselves absurd salaries. Along the way, they stopped hiring full-time career-oriented teachers and replaced them with under-paid, no benefits part-time instructors. And of course, they continually hike student fees. When times are lean, everyone needs to share the pain. After all is said and done, the quality of education provided by Cal Poly does not correlate to the increase in fees. I doubt the students would be protesting if they saw less excesses in the admin.

The highest paid person at institutions such as Cal Poly should be no more than twice that of the highest paid instructor. We also need to roll the administrative piece of the pie back to 1990 levels. Invest in learning, not administering.


I think that there are some students that would protest no matter what but I think they would have far fewer supporters if not for the excesses of administration. I can sympathize with them as one who received a heavily subsidized education in another state and probably could not have attended if those taxpayers hadn’t decided that it was a worthwhile investment. (I worked full time at nights to pay my bills and minimize student debt.)

I agree with a rollback of administrative salaries and even more with a rollback of the number of administrative positions. Without that, the biggest thing of value today’s students will be learning is how badly the system is rigged against those trying to improve their position in life. That is a formula for major societal unrest which hurts everyone.


Dear “Dead” Students, how the hell do expect the university to fund the recent faculty pay increases???? That’s right, by raising your tuition….duh.

Faculty members will receive a 5 percent bump on June 30, 2016; a 2 percent raise the next day, on July 1, 2016; and then a 3.5 percent raise for the 2017-2018 school year. None of the raises are retroactive to the current academic year. The agreement also provides 2.65 percent salary step increases for eligible faculty in 2017 and bumps promotion raises from 7.5 percent to 9 percent.


I’m thinking what really killed these students is the bloated admin with their lies, spin, and corruption. It’s a school; pay the teachers.


Big government lovers – –

Here’s another fine example of an upside down pyramid balancing on it’s tip rather than being supported by a sound, sturdy base. Anything this top heavy, be it our local CSD’s, cities, county, etc is bound to topple under its own weight eventually.


“CSU officials say the system’s current financial model is not sustainable and tuition increases are needed to cover budget gaps and uncertainties.” Sad. Change the current financial model. Uncertainties? Specifically, which ones? Sounds like a general fund.

The students are getting their exposure to rampant spending and taxation. May they learn this well. Introduce them to high speed rail and the PUC as well.

My only regret is that, after working/earning my way through undergrad and graduate work is that I didn’t feed at the public trough.

Jorge Estrada

If privatizing Cal Poly allows for higher salaries and reduces the public pension liability, I have to agree with the students.

Rich in MB

:Trigger Warning:

Someone should tell these kids that the California Tax Payers are not Playing Dead…they ARE DEAD from the taxes in this State. So it’s time to get up and get a part time job on Friday and Saturday night rather than attending yet another Booze Frat Party.