Protesters occupy building on SFSU campus
SAN FRANCISCO -- Protesters have taken over the business building at San Francisco State University, but they're running into a counter-protest from fellow students who want to go to class.
Protestors stopped business student Mike Veyberg when he tried to go to class on Wednesday morning and things looked like they might get out of hand.
"I've just been assaulted. They threw coffee at me, they attacked me for trying to go to class," he said.
But class was cancelled after 20 students entered the building around 5 a.m., barricaded themselves in and announced their demands.
"We demand a free education and worker, student, faculty run education. We see that the school is not running our interest, that it is running the interest of profit," said a protester.
"Our strategy here is that we want dialogue. We want to talk with our students, we want to find out what their concerns are, see what we can work with them," said Ellen Griffin of the University Communications office.
Protesters say they chose the business school for their takeover because it has not seen the drastic budget reductions other programs have seen, such as ethnic studies, and they believe that shows a bias against minority groups.
A number of students weren't buying that argument.
"Then I have an accounting class, a teacher is going to be going over the final exam today. My final exam grade is going to suffer because of this action," said business student Brenda Salem.
And in the middle of it all, one student saw both sides of the issue.
"I didn't know this was going to happen and out of nowhere to happen on the last week of finals is not good, but it's good that they're doing this," said business student Gerald Mudalige.
There are more protesters out at UCSF. About 15 students are blocking the entrance to the business school and a number of entrances to the building.
Students hope to stay there until their demands are met. The university has responded by closing the administration building because they don't want the same thing to happen there, but when the students are asking for a free education, you have to think those demands are not going to be met. The protests will continue throughout the day.
san francisco, california budget, education, education, terry mcsweeney
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