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Students plan protest of university conference

DPA/The Local · 24 Nov 2009, 09:07

Published: 24 Nov 2009 09:07 GMT+01:00

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The protest will continue student action that has been going on for weeks at universities across the country.

Student leaders from the University of Leipzig have accused the rectors, or leaders of the state universities, of not acting in student interests.

Meanwhile HRK President Margret Wintermantel said she sympathised with their complaints.

“I can understand if the students are worried about the terms of their studies and also when they protest,” she said. “But my impression right now is that there are few concrete demands, and instead an overall unhappiness with the situation. That worries me.”

Protesters have said they are angry about changes that are part of the Bologna process, meant to bring standardised bachelor's and master's programmes to European universities. They are also opposed to the introduction of modest tuition fees and what many consider the chronic underfunding of education in Germany.

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Protesting students also complain some institutions have failed to adapt programmes to the shortened period of time required to complete a degree. Others say that there are not enough entrance spots available to those wishing to enrol at universities in Germany.

On Monday 100 students occupied a lecture hall at the University of Leipzig where the HRK is meeting. Meanwhile last week more than 85,000 students took to the streets in Munich, Berlin, Freiburg, Cologne and at lecture halls in smaller university communities. The demonstrations are expected to continue into December.

DPA/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:34 November 24, 2009 by frankiep
It is unbelievable how much German students complain. They are upset about universities not having enough funds, yet at the same time are up in arms about having to actually pay a couple hundred Euros to attend classes full time. Talk about a bunch of selfish, whining, little brats. "Just give me what I want and make someone else pay the entire bill" seems to be their mentality. Let everyone else in society pay for the professors, facilities, books, tuition, etc., but God forbid they should have to pay a tiny fraction of the bill out of their own pockets. Unbelievable.
13:10 November 24, 2009 by Talonx
Well, I always thought that public institutions were to be funded by the public.

The 'couple hundred euros' you speak of will quickly morph into thousands as is the case in most countries with astronomical tuition fees (e.g. the U.S.).

If one wants to invest in the future one better not bankrupt those that would constitute it.

What is unbelievable is that you don't understand this.
21:16 November 24, 2009 by wxman
Typical spoiled brats unfamiliar with working for a living. their position: "I want improvements made immediately, and I want it to cost me less!" Completely out of touch with the real world.
23:43 November 24, 2009 by Logic Guy
Well, although I don't have all of the details, however, I'm sure many of us are aware of the fact that Germany's education systems, from kindergarden to graduate school, are far from what they should be.

Knowledge is without a doubt, the most important thing in the world.

You are nothing if you know nothing.

Therefore, regardless of what is required financially, leaders Germany must find a way to educate the society. Otherwise, educated people from the outside will continue to take jobs in Germany. A considerable amout of crime and welfare are also the result of insufficient education.
08:08 November 25, 2009 by Talonx
Frankiep, Hutcho, wxman;

I emplore you three to stop speaking out your asses. Every single german, no exception, that I study with has a job. Many of them work the full 20 hours a week allowed them, untop of strict demands for the b. degree and m. degree currently in place (the diplom and magister have essentially been retitled and crammed into a shorter time period).

Some that I know are putting in 80 hour weeks (only 20 of which is paid), this is more than those with 'real jobs' work.

I guess I'm getting at two things. How the hell can you call any student anywhere lazy (do you have selective amnesia of your time in school or did you not go to Uni?)? And, what do you expect them to do, take out loans, because in bavaria it is getting to that point. In order to afford rent and school while working some have started considering. Debting yourself before you have a 'real' job is certainly a horrible idea.

I think the best solution is that the state (the public) set its priorities straight and increase the salaries of teachers, money going to technology fees, as well as maintenance workers. Thereby, allowing students to focus on their futures and thus the future of the world.
08:52 November 26, 2009 by moistvelvet
Oh the poor students! If parents have to pay for children to attend Kindergarten, why shouldn't students have to pay to goto university? Attending university is a priviledge not a right, we are only saying that they should pay a contribution to the fees, then they might work a bit harder and not take 8-10 years studying for a degree.

Now the way I see it, the reason why these poor "hard working" students are opposing the Bologna process is because it standardises degrees across Europe (which surely is a good thing), which means they see it as having to fit in more work each year. Well if they didn't have such big breaks in between the TWO symesters each year then they could make better use of their time and fit in more symesters each year like other european countries do, it isn't about fitting more in but about not having so much time off!

I accept that many students may work hard, having to do part time jobs in addition to studying, but from my experience they are the minority, those few that qualify for the full Bafoeg (sp?) allowance don't have rich parents to subsidise their studiesa and they are the minority. The majority however seem to be the ones moaning about a little bit of hard graft, instead of accepting their priviledged position they demand more at the taxpayers expense. Others not so fortunate have had to work full time, bring up a family, study in their limited spare time for a degree and pay for it themselves, so you can see why some people get pretty annoyed about these whinging annoying parasites that do not wish to contribute to the state until they've had a good part of a decade freedloading.

If you want something bad enough you'll have to work hard and pay for it.
18:42 November 27, 2009 by Cincinnatus
At least these wonderful students are protesting for something of universal human importance, i.e. their claim to the right to have someone else pay for their tuition. Very honorable. GET A JOB, you louts!
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