Students: Fight debt, poverty & capitalism
University, college and school students protest in central London against higher tuition fees and education cuts , photo Suzanne Beishon
Jack McLean, Huddersfield
Going to university is supposed to be a stepping stone to a job which you couldn’t get without a degree. The reality is that, because of Westminster politicians, the only thing guaranteed for students after completing a degree is debt – lots of debt and little prospect of finding a job in which you’re qualified. Capitalism is forcing the majority of young people into unskilled, low-paid jobs, yet still charging us to go to university.
Austerity has terrorised the lives of working-class people across Europe, and education has become a target for cuts. Infamously, in 2010, Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats betrayed their voters by backing the Conservative’s bill to raise tuition fees to £9,000 a year.
But student debt doesn’t just hit you when you graduate. Student loans are nowhere near enough to live on so the number of students in desperate need of a part time job is rising while job opportunities remain stagnant.
University for many students has become a time shrouded in financial worries. The average debt for a graduate now stands at £53,000! The stereotype of student life being nothing more than socialising and watching daytime television is no longer true.
Because of the low turnout of students in elections, the major political parties feel that they are able to completely ignore student woes. Some are talking of further increasing tuition fees and none of them are even considering lowering them, never mind abolishing them. Students can’t trust these capitalist politicians – that’s why so few of us vote, not ‘apathy’.
We must fight for a socialist alternative so we can regain education as a right rather than a consumer product. Students should join the mass TUC demo on 18 October as well as supporting the public sector strike on 14 October so we can stand against the cuts that will devastate our future careers. Campaigns should also be taking place on campuses to get as big a turnout as possible to the 19 November student demonstration in London.
Join Socialist Students today to build a united student movement to fight against austerity and end the debt and poverty burdened on us by the super-rich and their capitalist system.