Opinion: Day of action

Marvin Logan is a senior Pan-African Studies major. Contact him at [email protected].

Marvin Logan

Next Wednesday, student leaders from all across the state of Ohio will join forces in Columbus to rally for the support of legislators, and students from Black United Students, Ohio Student Government Association and Undergraduate Student Government will travel. 

It is amazing to see students being able to work together; however, it is a bit concerning, and I will tell you why.

We as students have all felt the burden of paying tuition. Administrators have also felt the difficulty of distributing funds for university management. 

All of this difficulty comes from the falling numbers in the state’s commitment to funding higher education. Ohio ranks as one of the worst states in America for its burden on students and families to pay tuition. 

Numbers have gone down so much that tuition payments now outweigh the amount of funding that comes from the state. Considering the fall from the last 10 years in Ohio compared to the rest of the country, we flat out suck. But what sucks more is the lack of pressure put on the state by the everyday student.

Increasing the number of voters between the ages of 18-25 and having more students civically engaging lawmakers can make a world of difference. We need to see more students being active participants in the political process if we are going to see significant changes in higher education funding in Ohio. 

During my time at Kent State, I’ve seen students protest the salaries of university employees. I have also seen students protest renovations to our campus. All of these things hold value, but nothing holds more value than the money we get from Columbus. 

Students and administrators alike have to come together and make a difference at the statehouse and at the polls. At that point, colleges and college students will be held as a force to be reckoned with.

Until more students stand up to do their part, we won’t deserve to complain about the strain on our finances.  It means our student leaders have to engage more students to register to vote and to travel. It also means more students have to empathize with their fellow students who are struggling with them. We must talk the talk and walk the walk. 

Lawmakers won’t have a choice but to respond if we force their hands and show we seriously value our education and ourselves. 

Tap on your neighbors’ doors and ask, “Are you registered to vote?” Pressure your student leaders to register more voters. Ask your student government if they are tapping your lobbyists. 

Everyone that has a role has to do more, especially us. Continue to challenge yourselves, and each other.