The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) will intensify its ongoing campaign against Registration Fee hikes and cuts to student supports with two marches in Galway and Cork.
Students will take to the streets in both cities to protest against further increases in the Registration Fee and cuts to the student maintenance grant in the impending Budget.
USI enjoyed huge success with over 40,000 participants at its Dublin city centre march on November 3rd.
The USI Tell Your TD campaign, which urges students and the public to lobby their local TDs to protect Higher Education, is also gaining powerful momentum nationwide.
The campaign consists of a special website (www.tellyourtd.com), which allows the public to send a letter to their local TDs to state that education should be protected in Budget 2011.
Over 25,000 letters have already been generated via the website from concerned people across Ireland in the past fortnight.
And now, the national students? organisation is further intensifying its fight against fees.
Thousands of students from Galway-Mayo Institutes of Technology (GMIT), the National University of Galway (NUIG) and across the West of Ireland, will travel to Galway city centre to protest on November 18th.
Meanwhile, the protest march in Cork city centre will take place on December 1st.
USI will continue to fight for the preservation of Ireland?s Higher Education system, so that people from all backgrounds have the opportunity to access a third level education in the future.
Gary Redmond, President of USI, said:
?The students of Ireland are angry and concerned about their future education. Many face having to drop out of college if they are targeted by the Government in the Budget.
The exceptional turn out for USI national march last week is testament to the level of panic among our students. USI has organised the upcoming regional protest marches to ensure that students and Higher Education are not earmarked as easy targets for Budget 2011.
The protection and preservation of our Higher Education system is vital for the recovery of the Irish economy.?
GMIT President, Colin Canny, said:
?I would urge all GMIT students to please come out and support us in the upcoming protest. Already there are signs that the Government is beginning to sit up and take notice of students in this country, so now we must keep the pressure on.
Galway has always been a strong voting constituency in past elections, and the students of Galway and the West of Ireland must let the politicians know that they are a vote.?
NUIG President, Peter Mannion, said:
?With Budget 2011 less than four weeks away next Thursday's March in Galway is an opportunity for students to highlight how proposed cuts in education funding would affect them. Students at NUI Galway are already under significant financial pressure.
The threatened cuts would be too much for many students and may preclude them from Third Level education. The march will build on the national demonstration, which took place on November 3rd, when over 2000 Galway students traveled to Dublin to protest with students from all over the country."