March 26: Students Occupy Space at Bucharest University and Babeș-Bolyai University

~ italiano ~

March 26th:
Students Occupy Space at Bucharest University and Babeș-Bolyai University

In the evening of March 26 students began to occupy the History Faculty of Bucharest University as well as an amphitheatre at Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca (both in Romania) indefinately. With this action they aim to create an open space for everyone to discuss, reflection and to articulate common interests. Issues like precariousness/poverty, the Bologna Process, university autonomy, as well as economic and social conditions of both students and teachers and others are not discussed inside universities. That's what the occupiers will be addressing and debating freely and without restrictions. Anyone interested is welcome to propose other interesting subjects to be discussed.

It's an act against the increasing commercialisation of education; an act of resistance against universities being factories producing human capital for the labour market, while at the same time students are turned into customers.

The following press release was published by the students involved in the occupation at Babeș-Bolyai University:

Press release

For immediate distribution

26th of March, 2013

Reclaim your University!

Cluj Napoca, Romania. Today, 26th of March, 2013, at 4 pm, one of the amphitheaters of the central headquartes of Babes Bolyai University from Cluj Napoca, has been indefinifelty occupied as a sit-in, by students.

The University is transforming, more and more, into an over guarded institution. The space that should have encourage the free movement of ideas and that should have been a debate forum, became, with every year, a closed space, petrified by practices that no longer reflect the students' true problems and needs. Instead of being a life learning experience, the University makes us dependent of a dysfunctional economic and social system: university education is a merchandise, nicely packed and served to clients (also called „students”) whose only social value, after graduation, is that of potentially employees. But the most severe problem is that the students are not encourage, through a participatory system, to make their voices heard.

Therefore, we consider that the reclaim of an autonomous space inside the University is necessary – a space where our voices can be articulated, in a free debate, open to all students. We are all responsable for the creation of a collective future, in which everyone's aspirations compose an university project, designed to cultivate involved and critical citizens, not just diploma owners.

Because we regard University as a common and not as a socially isolated institution, everyone's involvement is both necessary and welcomed – involvement of students, teachers, university auxiliary staff, high school students, graduates and anyone interested. Being a non-exclusive debate, any form of discrimination is against the very reasons that made this debate necessary.

The University belongs to everyone!

This is a students sit-in. It will not end until we, together, come to a conclusion regarding our real problems and the possible solutions for them. From this moment on, your opinion matters, as long as you are here!

The first plenary will take place TODAY, 26 March 2013, starting with 6.30pm, in the Iorga amphitheater, first floor, main building of the Babes Bolyai University.

sources: (student activists' website) + + +
SE POATE Cluj (Babes Bolyai University) + Baricada Universitară

at Babes Bolyai University:

at Bucharest University:

"We are the university!"


Solidarity letter from the Student Network in Hungary

a fellow activist of Hallgatói Hálózat Pécs shared this letter:

A Letter from the Student Network in Hungary to the Occupiers of the university in Cluj-Napoca University []

Dear Cluj-Napoca University Students, Dear Friends,

‘The university is ours!’ – students shout resounding from Mexico City to Québec, from Sydney to Novi Sad and Belgrade. It was written on Zagreb university occupiers’ banners who demanded free higher education as well as it was proclaimed in manifestos issued by secondary and university students blockading the Vienna University and it was advertised on walls of central halls and lecture halls occupied by Pécs, Szeged and Budapest students. One world – one struggle.

University is ours since it is us, present and future university students and teachers, who day by day create and recreate our universities with relentless efforts; it is us who create and improve them by doing activities at and for universities and even by our mere presence there.

We not only share our friends’ success but also stand by them in hard times. Likewise, if the institution of university, that is, the framework of intellect is offended by inequity or injustice, if anyone wants to deprive it from its autonomy, to dismiss a large number of its employees in unprincipled ways and by false rhetoric, or if university citizens’ interests are harmed, then we stand up together, hold protests and occupy universities, thereby demonstrating to the power, be it the state, an abstract economic idea or even a university leadership, that we are the university not only symbolically but in effect as well. “Never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”

Students of the Cluj-Napoca university, you, dear friends, have stood up bravely for the sake of your interests, for the interests of your university. Your feat serves a universal end: it saves a public good. Your discussions, forums and plenums not only serve the institution of university but the whole Rumanian and European society. ‘We are the ones we have always been waiting for!’

We wish you persistence, courage and strength for this duty also by means of this letter!

Student Network Hungary

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