Daily Archives: 03/12/2010

Press release: Student occupation begins unprecedented dialogue with University

Students occupying the Great Hall in the University of Nottingham’s administrative headquarters have decided to temporarily suspend the occupation today after an agreement was reached with university management. An open meeting has been scheduled for Monday so that the concerns at hand can be taken forward. The occupiers’ four demands are as follows:

  1. that the University of Nottingham lobby the Russell Group and the government and issue a statement condemning all cuts to higher education, the EMA and the rise in tuition fees.
  2. that the University of Nottingham implement a complete open book policy in regards to existing budget constraints.
  3. that the University of Nottingham ensure no redundancies for teaching, research or support staff.
  4. that the University of Nottingham ensure that no victimization or repercussions for anyone participating in the occupation.

A postgraduate who had spent the last four days in the Great Hall commented, “We are pleased with this result as this is the first time that the University has ever engaged in dialogue with student protesters and we are cautiously optimistic. The overwhelming support from students, staff and researchers shows the strength of feeling within the University about the issues at stake. We stand in solidarity with the national movement resisting cuts that will only serve to deepen inequality.”

The occupation was inundated with messages of support from staff across the University and from groups around the world, for which the students would like to express their gratitude. These are posted on the website.

The Outcome
The meeting will be chaired by an independent senior member of staff and will include the Vice Chancellor, a representative from the Students Union and Nottingham Students Against Fees and Cuts. The meeting is open to all students and staff of the University to attend. The students are hopeful that the University will act on their demands and express these concerns at a national level. Inspired by the success and support, the student group is keen to continue their campaign and have planned numerous other events and rallies over the coming weeks.

Message of support from the School of Geography

Thank you for all the support that you are all showing. Below is another statement of support for our occupation. This time from the amazing staff at the School of Geography.

STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR STUDENT DIRECT ACTION

As academics, teachers and postgraduate students at the University of Nottingham, we wish to express our support for the peaceful direct action currently underway in the symbolic ‘occupation’ of the Great Hall. This is a crucial moment for the future of higher education and young people all over the country are rightly attempting to make their voices heard and their concerns taken into account. We call on the University to ensure that no undue force is exercised against the students involved in the occupation. We urge the University to take note of their demands and the Vice-Chancellor to express opposition to the current government’s destructive agenda for higher education.

1. Stacey Coppock
2. Prof. Louise Crewe
3. Dr Georgina Endfield
4. Dr Richard Field
5. Dr Shaun French
6. Dr Sarah Hall
7. Prof. Mike Heffernan
8. Jake Hodder
9. Dr Sarah Jewitt
10. Dr Lowri Jones
11. Dr Matthew Jones
12. Dr Steve Legg
13. Prof. Andrew Leyshon
14. Kate Lynch
15. Amber Martin
16. Prof. David Matless
17. Dr Suzanne McGowan
18. Dr Carol Morris
19. Dr Gary Priestnall
20. Dr Susanne Seymour
21. Dr Alexander Vasudevan
22. Dr Lucy Veale

Billy Bragg to visit the occupation!

Billy Bragg is coming down to the Great Hall to visit the University of Nottingham occupation.  Be there at the great hall at 12:30! Pass along the word!

More photos from the occupation