February 25, 2016
By Matt Petras
University of Pittsburgh students, professors and faculty are joining forces tomorrow at 3:30 PM to agitate the university to treat them better in the “March to Take Back Our University.”
“With the corporatization of higher education that we’re seeing across the country we feel like it’s very necessary for students, staff, faculty to all join together and fight back for control of our university,” said 21-year-old Pitt senior Kai Pang. “We don’t want it being run like a business.”
Pang, a philosophy and economics double major with years of activism experience concerning a swath of different issues, is the secretary of United Students Against Sweatshops #31, which is the Pitt chapter of the larger, national USAS movement.
“We’re using this action to really highlight a campaign we recently launched called $15 For Pitt, which mandates $15 an hour for all student and campus workers,” Pang said.
The person speaking first, on behalf of this new campaign, is Pang himself. He is just one of many involved, however. Alyssa Lieberman, a 21 year-old junior at Pitt, is the president of USAS #31. She majors in politics and philosophy.
“I think it’s really important to push our university to make changes especially as a student,” Lieberman said. “I’m paying tuition to go to this college; I think that it’s only fair that the university pays its students a living wage.”
Pang has noticed a change at Pitt over the past two years.
“The political climate on this campus has changed dramatically,” Pang said. “The community at Pitt that is sort of the progressive community of the students who are willing and ready to fight and take back control of our university has grown exponentially.”
The Facebook page for the march can be accessed here.