As you all probably know by know, the fee hike issue is a heated one on University campuses. Student tuition fees were approved to increase 32% from roughly $6,000 to roughly $10,000. Many UC campuses are resisting and protesting, UC Davis included. I got a call from my editor saying there might be "a small and probably unorganized protest" at around 11:00am. I say OK and head over there with a few minutes to spare. I ran into 2 other girls who seemed frustrated that there was no protests to be seen. After about an hour of looking and asking, we see a hoard to students charge through our Quad. And so it began. The protest began to grow exponentially. From 10 to 20. 20 to 40. 40 to 80 and so on. At its peak, there was about 400 students. From noon on they walked around campus, into buildings, into lecture halls and anywhere they knew their voices could be heard. "JOIN OUR STRIKE" they chanted. They soon went to Mrak Hall, the building that houses Chancellor Linda Katehi's office. The fourth floor where she works was locked, so they went to the lobby and stayed there. A sit in was organized that went from 1pm on until 10pm...with 52 arrests not to mention. Even the ASUCD Senate decided to administer their senate meeting at the site of the protests, effectively voting on a Act of No Confidence in Mark Yudof, being periodically interrupted by fellow students being escorted out by police. I stayed there from 11:00am up until 10:00pm, after thinking this would only be a short 30min assignment :) Better yet (or worse so depending on your perspective) me and another fellow AgTV reporter were the ONLY media that decided to stay in the hall given the threat for arrest. We both agreed that this kind of work defines our jobs and leaving would be a total mistake. There were many times when i knew that I was going to be arrested and even planned an escape route for my memory cards just in case the police wanted to harass me. It never got to that point as me and my fellow media reporter decided to leave about a minute or two before the arrests were made. We wanted to stay in as long as possible, and did.
All in all, it was a powerful night, and one i dont think I will be forgetting for a long while.