Berks students join budget-cut rally in HarrisburgApproximately 50 Penn State Berks students joined 600 students from across the state and crammed into the rotunda of the Capitol to protest the proposed budget cuts for higher education on Tuesday, April 5, 2011. Their message: Cutting state funding in half for Penn State University as proposed in Gov. Tom Corbett's budget would result in tuition hikes that could put a college education out of reach for many students.
Brandon Bernard, Student Government Association President at Penn State Berks, said the students wanted to give the legislators a better understanding of the impact the proposed 52.4 percent cut would have on them.
"Our purpose was to tell our story, explain what Penn State means to us and how the cuts could affect the future of Penn State," said Bernard, a Global Studies major.
Allen Landis, a first-year student studying business, was confident that legislators would listen because it was the largest crowd the university has had in the Capitol.
"They're going to hear us, and recognize that there's Penn State in mostly every county and that we do care," he said.
Krisandra Livingston, a junior elementary education major from Lehighton, Carbon County, predicted that the rally would accomplish the students' goal.
"This was a great way for the students, parents, alumni, and professors to show legislators how much they care about their school and what happens to it," she said.