Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1058/29655

From The Socialist newspaper, 2 October 2019

Freshers fairs 2019: Students impatient for change and determined to fight

Talking to freshers in Leicester

Talking to freshers in Leicester   (Click to enlarge)

Students across the country are furious with Johnson and the Tories, but see Corbyn as too hesitant. They are looking for ideas which can explain the unprecedented political crisis, and for a way to join a real fight for socialist change.
Below are reports on just some of the campuses where Socialist Students and the Socialist Party have been out building the fightback. Find out more and join Socialist Students at socialiststudents.org.uk.

Cardiff

We had an excellent first Cardiff Socialist Students meeting - 50 people there, and the best discussion I can remember. More questions and more engagement than we've had before.

We've signed up close to 300 people now across the city's three university sites, which has got to be a record. We're also discussing with several people already about joining the Socialist Party. Looking good!

Ross Saunders

Leeds

At the University of Leeds freshers fair, students queued up to sign up to Socialist Students' mailing list.

Over the last few years, many students have said they are interested in socialism because of the anti-austerity policies Jeremy Corbyn's put forward in leadership and election campaigns. This year, many were critical that Corbyn wasn't pushing those ideas enough, and were keen to get involved with a campaigning organisation that could push socialist ideas more consistently and further.

Over the course of freshers and the climate strike around 120 signed up to our mailing list.

Our first meeting was among the best we've ever had, with students grappling with the confusing political situation, including discussing how to defeat the Blairites within Labour, what is the basis of Johnson's populist appeal, and how long could that last.

The meeting was clear that if Corbyn moved decisively for a general election, and pushed his anti-austerity policies to the fore by defending jobs and campaigning for public ownership in a new Brexit deal, this could have huge appeal.

Iain Dalton

Southampton

"I mean, nationalising the banks shouldn't be that big a deal, it's necessary," said one student. Many were keen to discuss socialist perspectives on Brexit, ending austerity and tackling climate change. Students also asked questions about how we could redistribute wealth and how working-class people could take power.

Socialist Students signed up over 52 people at the University of Southampton on 25 September. Several expressed interest in joining the Socialist Party too.

Out first meeting was a great success. We had eight new members along, and several students signed up to attend Socialism 2019. New members will be joining us on our regular campus stall.

Bea Gardner

Bristol

Overwhelmingly, University of Bristol students wanted to talk about ending the Tory government and expressed their anger at Boris Johnson's recent actions.

Without prompting, students commented about the Brexit crisis acting as a cover for the vicious austerity of the Tories since 2010. There was also some scepticism about Corbyn's ability to challenge Johnson while he faced attacks from within the Labour Party.

We signed up 171 interested in Bristol Socialist Students. Most encouraging was the appetite to become active on campus, also reflected in the 7,000-strong demonstration for climate action in Bristol last week.

Frankie Langeland

Sheffield

Sheffield Socialist Party helped our student members at Sheffield Hallam University freshers fair. The student union organisers must have been having a laugh - they put the Socialist Students stall opposite the Conservatives, union flag, Boris and all!

It helped us though. We signed up 58 new students interested in the society. It also gave us an interesting insight into the wannabe future representatives of the ruling class.

Their recruitment lines were "we don't really do politics" and "are you interested in drinking?" So the spirit of Eton and the Bullingdon Club will continue if we haven't already overthrown this degenerate, rotten capitalist class by the time these gilded youth come of age. You've been warned!

Alistair Tice

Students were animated by socialist ideas, but sceptical of Corbyn's strategy, at University of Sheffield freshers on 26 September. Around 20 took part in the first Socialist Students meeting, with more of the 100 sign-ups giving apologies for absence.

There was openness to socialist EU exit arguments, and frustration that the Labour leadership seems unwilling to fight. A lively discussion that evening on how to oust Johnson, and what socialism is, showed much promise for the Sheffield student fightback.

James Ivens

Leicester

Leicester Socialist Party was out at De Montfort University and the University of Leicester to build Socialist Students. Students and workers were keen to sign our petition: Boris out and Corbyn in on socialist policies.

There was a mixed reaction to Corbyn, not helped by him seeming weak. But there was a strong interest in socialist ideas and joining a fighting organisation - Socialist Students.

We had some great conversations, with young people keen to buy the Socialist newspaper and Socialist Students' magazine Megaphone. We discussed the climate strikes, socialist case for leaving the EU, and the role of Socialist Students in fighting alongside workers for socialist change.

Lindsey Morgan

London

There has been a huge thirst for ideas on campuses such as University of the Arts London and Brunel University, where students want to set up new Socialist Students societies. This year we sold more copies than usual of the Socialist Students magazine Megaphone and the Socialist newspaper.

We had good sign-ups at Goldsmiths, Middlesex and University College London freshers. Socialist Party members were also out at the University of East London, King's College London and Imperial College London to help build Socialist Students.

Following the fairs we have been hosting socialism Q&A meetings, giving students a chance to talk about the current governmental crisis and how to fight for a general election. We advertised the climate strike on stalls before 20 September, and encouraged students to link up with workers taking action that day, such as in Lambeth where council workers held a rally.

On 5 October, Socialist Students members from across London will join young workers at a meeting called 'capitalism is crisis'. From the Tories to the economy to the climate, we will discuss all the problems facing young people under this rotten capitalist system.

Helen Pattison

West Midlands

Over 50 signed up for more info at Coventry University and the University of Warwick. We had eleven new people at our first meeting at Coventry Uni, with many coming out to help on the climate protests later that week.

Ten came to the first Warwick meeting. Two Chinese students and one Hong Kong exchange student came and are keen to discuss more and campaign around events in Hong Kong and the links Warwick has with the Chinese Communist Party bureaucracy.

Over 100 signed up across Birmingham City University, Aston University, the University of Birmingham and Brum's many colleges. Socialist Students was also present at the University of Wolverhampton, with a host of people signing up. Eleven new people came to our first meet-up in Birmingham.

Lenny Shail

Brighton

We had regular street meetings all day at University of Sussex freshers fair as groups of students gathered round our stall and to hear our programme to boot out Boris and fight for a Corbyn-led alternative and socialist policies.

Over 50 signed up as interested in Socialist Students, including students from the US, Mexico and Greece who came to our Brighton meeting hosted by Brighton Socialist Party. Our meeting had a strong international flavour, ranging from Britain to Trump, from Mexico to Syriza, with students asking how we can overcome the powerful capitalists and their imperialist policies.

There is a strong anti-Tory mood among students, they are very open to our socialist ideas and are keen to get active, debate and discuss. The meeting agreed to organise further events and campaign on campus to build links with workers and their unions.

Nick Chaffey

Bradford

Reflecting the fog of Brexit, there was confusion and questioning at the University of Bradford, where Socialist Students had a freshers stall just off-campus. There was a smaller but very serious layer of students interested in discussing the ideas to cut through the impasse.

A number of students enthusiastically left their details and bought copies of Socialist Students' magazine Megaphone. We're holding a meeting to try to establish a society for the first time on 3 October.

Iain Dalton

East Midlands

Socialist Students stalls took place across the East Midlands - at Lincoln, Derby, Leicester, Northampton, Nottingham, De Montfort, and Trent universities. At every one there were students who were keen on our anti-Tory message and anxious to get a general election now.

Many detailed discussions took place as students wanted to know what we thought of recent events around Johnson and parliament.

Lots were prepared to sign up to Socialist Students and organise in their own universities. In Northampton, for example, three students were among the nine new people who attended the Socialist Party's public meeting, 'Tories out of Northampton County Council and Tories out of government'. They were making plans to set up a new society at the university straight after.

Steve Score

North West

Socialist Party members met with an interested and enthusiastic response from students in the North West. Many gave their contact details for Socialist Students events, and in both Liverpool, and Manchester and Salford, students attended Socialist Party branch meetings for the first time, at short notice, in order to get involved in our work.

Roger Bannister

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 2 October 2019:


What we think

Capitalist elite split - fight for a government in the interests of the working class

40 years on: Mandatory reselection more vital for Labour than ever


Brexit

Is a workers' Brexit deal possible?


Fresher's fairs

Freshers fairs 2019: Students impatient for change and determined to fight


News

Battered Boris must go... and all the Tories with him!

Nationalisation only way to safeguard jobs and skills at Wrightbus

Labour's mass social housing pledge

Them&Us


Workplace news

Royal Mail dispute: Workers determined to fight bosses' injustices

PCS general secretary election - Support Marion Lloyd

Bromley libraries strikers proved right

Hull: Construction workers' walkout forces employer to back down

Crown Paints dispute - union senior steward speaks out

End low pay - support Salford Royal security workers' action

Karro Foods victory Hull


International socialist news and analysis

Catalonia independence movement two years on

Egypt: Street protests challenge Trump's favourite dictator


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Socialism 2019: An unmissable event

Now is the moment to join the Socialist Party

Financing socialist struggle


Reader's opinion

The Socialist inbox

Active and strong member of Socialist Party reaches 80


 

Home   |   The Socialist 2 October 2019   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Students:

triangleUCU strikes: Union means business in fight against employers

triangleFighting for free education, jobs, homes, and a future worth living

triangleUCU votes for pay and pension strikes

triangleSouthampton Socialist Party & Socialist Students: Socialism, what we stand for

triangleYork freshers success

Freshers fairs:

triangleEnthusiasm for Socialist ideas at the freshers fairs

triangleFreshers fairs: socialist ideas chime with students

triangleWinning a new generation of students

triangleEnthusiasm for socialism at freshers fairs

Socialist:

triangleExeter and S. Devon Socialist Party: Fighting for Corbyn's socialist policies

triangleSouth East London Socialist Party: Rebellion around the world - Is it coming to Britain?

triangleSouth East London Socialist Party: How would socialist nationalisation work?

Socialist Students:

triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: Tories out! Corbyn in with socialist policies

triangleGreen Party offers no alternative for young people and climate change chaos

University:

triangleHow students can fight and win

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

13/11/19

Postal workers

Postal union determined to resist bosses' attacks

13/11/19

Socialist Party

I'm 90 and still a socialist

13/11/19

UCU

UCU strikes: Union means business in fight against employers

13/11/19

PCS

General secretary election: Enthusiastic support for Marion Lloyd

13/11/19

Socialism

Socialism 2019 - what you thought

13/11/19

Mansfield

We saved Chatsworth Ward - two years on

13/11/19

Fighting Fund

Help socialist ideas spread this election: donate!

13/11/19

Barking

Barking: protest brings pledge to remove dangerous decking

13/11/19

Campaign Opposing Police Surveillance

Trade union conference to force secret police disclosure

13/11/19

Climate change

Socialism 2019 rally: "Socialist change needed to end climate change"

13/11/19

Leicester

Leicester campaigns to save our NHS

13/11/19

Museums

Bradford libraries and museums: Unite members escalate action against cuts

13/11/19

NHS

Frimley NHS Trust strikes: Health workers walkout against privatisation

13/11/19

Workers

'McStrikers' demand 15 an hour

13/11/19

Socialist Students

Fighting for free education, jobs, homes, and a future worth living

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07954 376 096

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


November 2019

October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999