The student movement which started on Twitter and Facebook, led to about 50 student protestors outside of Sadler Hall last Thursday.
The Occupy Sadler group formed in reaction to the 6.5 percent tuition increase, bringing TCU’s total cost for a full-time undergraduate student to $34,500 for next year.
Chancellor Boschini said he had never seen a student reaction like this before, but concerned parents and students have contacted him in the past about tuition increases.
“My main message is, fill out the FASFA, and give us a chance to see if we can meet whatever your perceived need is for next year,” Boschini said. “Based on our history of the past nine years, we’ve done that every year.”
Boschini’s presence at Occupy Sadler turned the protest atmosphere into a Q and A session with the students. With protest signs in hand, students asked the hard questions: What exactly is our tuition money going to? Are there unnecessary costs that can be cut to keep tuition lower? Why don’t academic scholarships increase at the same rate as tuition each year?
Sophomore Michael Milican, the appointed leader of Occupy Sadler, said that while many of their questions were answered, there were still some concerns.
“We’re looking forward to a lot more transparency in the process," Millican said. “We’d still like to see some of the things like the scholarships and the flat rate tuition addressed.”
In addition to the protest, sophomore Caitlin Jordan created a petition listing the three demands of Occupy Sadler.
These changes include: a proportionate increase in scholarships with tuition, more transparency in the tuition process, and a “grandfather clause” that would lock tuition in at the same rate for students’ four years at TCU.
“It’s a struggle for our parents and our families and for those students who really can’t afford to come here and are paying their own way,” Jordan said. “Unfortunately I’ve talked to several students that won’t be able to attend TCU next year because of the tuition increase and future increases that may come.”
Jordan said she plans to keep the petition going to collect more signatures and will bring it to SGA in a few weeks. Millican said Thursday that the future of Occupy Sadler has yet to be decided.