We Demand Governor Cuomo #FixCUNY Now!
CUNY is broken; a broken education system and broken facilities. The CUNY Board of Trustees has raised tuition AGAIN, whilst the Governor refuses to sign the MOE Bill that would raise CUNY’s funding in line with inflation.
We’ve had enough - share your pictures and stories of CUNY being broken. Make sure to tag #FixCUNY in your posts or live videos.
Stories of a Broken CUNY
My name is Andrea Di Salvio, I am a double major in Secondary Education and History here at Brooklyn College.
As a double major, I am in the same boat as everyone else here who is not qualified for full financial aid for some reason or another. I feel that struggle, and it affects me tremendously.
While I would love to talk more about my personal experiences regarding that, I am here today to address a different issue.
I am the founder of the “Brokelyn College” campaign for adequate funding for Brooklyn College and all of the CUNYs. CBS2 News, Pix 11, the New Yorker, and other well known New York based news sources have all reported on my campaign and the abysmal conditions here at Brooklyn College.
The central part of this campaign is my Instagram page CUNY_Brokelyn_College, which receives and posts photo submissions from students of anything that is broken or falling apart here on campus. This includes things such as broken toilets and sinks and urinals in bathrooms; holes in the floors and walls; leaks, mold and asbestos; missing ceiling and floor tiles; infestations; elevators that don’t work; walls with strips of peeling paint, etc.
If you are not a student or faculty member here at Brooklyn College, and you just come to our beautiful library, which is the most maintained building on campus, as it receives the most outside traffic, you’ll have no idea just how bad this situation is. If you walk into Roosevelt Hall on the other side of Bedford Avenue and see the mold and water damage and exposed wiring and drooping ceilings, you’ll ask yourself, “How is this building not condemned???”
I started this campaign to bring awareness to people inside and outside CUNY what the physical manifestation of improper funding looks like. Anyone can see it with their eyes how poorly CUNY is funded and it is a shame. Queens College, Hunter College, City College, Brooklyn College, they are all falling apart. I want someone who can help change things to see the pictures on my page and to say, “Oh my God, this isn’t right,” and to do something about it - Mayor De Blasio, Governor Cuomo, someone.
With whatever little money Brooklyn College does have to spend on repairs and upkeep, which is not even close to enough to fix everything, things can’t get fixed. Things can’t get fixed because we can only afford to have 3 plumbers, 6 electricians, 4 painters, and 4 carpenters for this entire, massive campus that houses almost 20,000 students. 1 of those plumbers is only a plumber’s assistant, and 2 of those electricians are only electrician’s assistants.
About 60% of NYC High School Graduates come to a CUNY school, and this is what they are met with. The people that go to school here are largely the poor and working class, myself included. It’s a slap in the face, and it lowers student and faculty morale.
I’ve had graduating High School Seniors message me, saying that they’ve decided not to come to a CUNY school because of how underfunded they are. That breaks my heart because I do truly love this school. That’s why I’m running the Brokelyn College Campaign, and that’s why I’m here today. I love Brooklyn College and I want it to be the school that it used to be. I want that for all the CUNYs. I want people to be able to be proud that they go to a CUNY school, not ashamed. No one should be ashamed for following their dreams and pursuing a higher education.
CUNY can’t take any more budget cuts. We need to Fund CUNY now. We need accountability.
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Scammed by Excelsior
My name is Razieh Arabi. I am attending Baruch college pursuing my bachelors degree in accounting with double minor in political science and Quantitive methods and modeling. I am also a Baruch delegate for the university student senate.
I am a single mother and I have struggled to work very hard to raise my son. Going to school was always a dream, chiefly because of my financial status. For years I had to put off this dream as it always seemed impossible to accomplish it but few years back I finally made the leap from holding hourly paid jobs to going after higher education despite all of the barriers and responsibilities that I had.
I knew I had to start from some where even if it takes longer by taking small steps. So I started out from community college and it took me 3 years to achieve my associate degree.
Last year, as I was ready to transfer out to Baruch college , while it was a ground breaking year to finally have the possibility of attending free public school in the State of New York, this ideal shattered soon after applying as I was rejected from the Excelsior Scholarship program. It was frustrating and I felt I was rubbed away from the opportunity and no one could tell me why, even though in my mind I have met the primary qualifications to meet the requirements.
After a long way of questioning the NYS higher education services corporation in Albany, since no one locally had any explanation, I discovered that I was not qualified due to not being on track to graduate in 4 years for a 4 year degree. Although this program had no precedent in the past I was being held responsible for what I had no clue in. There are many students in CUNY that still struggle to make their living. Yet only 1.7% of students in CUNY are benefited from this program. It is not just tuition that we are struggling to meet, the cost of living and transportation is also high.
Governor Cuomo should make critical reforms to the Excelsior Scholarship program and he needs to ensure that more students, who need financial assistance to attend college, can meet the credentials to do so.
If you are making a promise then rise up to the challenge and don’t deliver just an empty promise.
Fund CUNY now!!!
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