Friday, March 5, 2010

March 4th UCLA Recap

On March 4th, a UCLA coalition of students, workers, and faculty held two rallies, a teach-in, and a sit-in. All of these events were very energetic, and we made sure that our demands were heard by the public and the administration. In fact, early pres reports showed that the media were making the connection between the state reduction of funding and the fact that students are now paying more for less.

At the noontime rally, attended by close to a thousand people, groups from all sectors of the UCLA community came together to speak as one voice. After a series of passionate speeches and chants, the entire crowd marched across the campus, and a couple hundred of students, workers, and faculty started an occupation of the central administration building. Many people stayed in the hot hallway in front of the Chancellor’s office for over six hours, and the time was filled with speeches, music, and an open debate concerning what to do next. While the coalition demanded to speak to the Chancellor, a group of police were protecting his office, and he was not seen during the entire day. During part of the sit-in, CNN did a live broadcast that can bee seen here.

At 3:00 p.m., a teach-in with over two hundred students and faculty was held outside Powell library. After a series of passionate speeches and presentations by faculty and graduate students, the crowd marched over to Murphy Hall and joined the coalition outside of the Chancellor’s office. While the plan was to lead a march into Westwood, the coalition decided to stay inside and outside of Murphy Hall.

At 4:30, a second rally was held at Bruin Plaza with the general theme of “Protect Public Education, Protect Public Workers.” Teachers and students from local K-12 schools, community colleges, and California State Universities joined together to protest and to hear a great series of speakers. After this rally, many people marched back to Murphy Hall where we found that the building entrances were now being blocked by police. Since we could not enter the building, we held another rally outside of Murphy Hall. During most of these events, KPFK radio was broadcasting live from UCLA, and you can hear three great hours of coverage and interviews by clicking here and here. For a discussion of where we go next, click here.


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