Marching for Higher Education

On March 7, 2024, hundreds of faculty, students, and community members marched through Sacramento to demand a more just and equitable education system in California's Community Colleges.  In preparation for the march, dozens of dedicated employees worked tirelessly to obtain approval and coordinate its organization. I collaborated with AFT 1521 student-interns to speak in several sociology classes to engage students and encourage their participation. For me, this event began in the early hours of the 7th, when I met with over one hundred students and faculty at Burbank Airport before traveling to Sacramento. I was thoroughly impressed by the AFT 1521 student-interns who took charge right away in the morning, handing out boarding passes and shirts to everyone before we went through security.

After an uneventful one hour-long flight, we arrived at Sacramento Metropolitan Field (SMF) Airport. Our group gathered and boarded a bus to Sutter Health Park (AKA, the River Cats Stadium), where we ate and strategized for the march while awaiting the arrival of students and faculty from neighboring areas and districts. Over the course of the morning, I recognized familiar faces, met new ones, and took the opportunity to connect with both. Many people shared what brought them here, and for the most part, it was their love of our educational system and the impact it had on their lives. Then we were assigned roles; I was tasked with serving as a “march monitor”, responsible for guiding and assisting in leading the march towards the California State Capitol. Additional students were assigned roles, such as carrying our banner, delivering speeches at the rally, and leading our chants.

As we began our march, I couldn't help but notice the massive crowd filled not just with hundreds of people, but also the strong desire to help our community. There was a real drive to ensure that education remains affordable and accessible to everyone. As I led us across the Golden State Bridge, I joined in on our chants and felt lifted by the overwhelming positive energy. By the time we arrived at the Capitol, I had lost my voice, but I was filled with pride for everyone who had contributed to making this march possible. We demonstrated our strength and dedication to raising our voices and fighting for our future. If we want to keep our education system open and accessible while also fulfilling its promise, we must continue to advocate for economic justice and tuition-free education, as well as proper compensation and representation for our faculty.

This march demonstrated that we will hold our elected officials accountable and that our voices will be heard. If this message has inspired you, I hope to see you at the march next year.

Share this post:

Comments on "Marching for Higher Education "

Comments 0-5 of 0

Please login to comment