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Students rally at Capitol
Photos and Story by Dana Haynes
More than 300 college and university students from throughout Oregon rallied on the steps of the Capitol Monday for adequate funding for post-secondary education.
Several students from Portland Community College attended the rainy rally, along with students from the other 16 community colleges and the seven schools in the Oregon University System.
Speakers for the event include Gov. John Kitzhaber, who has battled this session for Senate Bill 909, which would redesign Oregon education funding from pre-kindergarten through graduate school. Kitzhaber told the crowd that he supports additional funding for post-secondary education but added, “We have a lot of work to do.”
Also speaking were State Reps. Michael Dembrow of Portland and Rod Monroe of Gresham, plus State Sen. Mark Hass of Beaverton.
Among the PCC students at the rally were Paula Barreto and Thomas Worth, both members of the Associated Students of Portland Community College.
Moments before the students rallied on the Capitol steps, House Bill 3541 was passed by the House of Representatives. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Dembrow, would require schools in the Oregon University System to accept credits that students obtain from an Oregon community college. The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration.
The rally was sponsored by the Oregon Student Association and the Oregon Community College Student Association. They received support from the state’s largest teachers’ unions, the Oregon Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers-Oregon.
To learn more about PCC’s legislative activities, or what issues could affect the college, visit http://www.pcc.edu/about/legislature/