150 Students occupy University Rectorate
The following is a translation of the press release of those who occupied the rectorate at the University of Siegen (Germany), located in the city centre, following a general assembly earlier today.
PRESS RELEASE OF THE STUDENT PROTEST GROUP AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SIEGEN
The protests of the students just reached a new high at 11:10am:
A part of the protest group occupied the rectorate at the University of Siegen. The protest group is independent of all pre-existing student bodies and consists of students from all faculties, who are more than unsatisfied with the current conditions at the university. With this occupation we don’t only want to vent our anger through a disruptive action, but create a space, which can be used to critically reflect on and discuss the role our university as well as the education system as a whole within society.
We give our protest a wider perspective, than to just get rid of temporary grievances, and a space, which we can’t don’t have available on our overcrowded campus. The protest of many participants is linked to their hope, that through our criticism and demands something would change. That we ourselves can create change. But what should change? And how would it be better? What do we imagine when we hear “humanly shaped future”, the motto of the university decided by our rector–and why does nobody, but ourselves, speak of a humanly shapred present? And could our ideas and visions actually be turned into reality under the given conditions? What are the possible scopes within the systems and when do we hit the boundaries?
What roles does the ‘ivory tower’ university even play in our society? And who is the correct addressee for our criticism and demands? Who is responsible for these unreasonable conditions, and who could change something about this administration of misery? Or can’t the grievances even be traced back to individual protagonists, like the rector?
We want to discuss these questions with students, but are not anymore willing to be lulled into ‘future talk’ by the rector again! This occupation of the rector’s office is therefore a deliberate break from previous forms of protests.
For a truly humanly future,
the protest group from the occupied rectorate.
Original in German: blogs.uni-siegen.de (.pdf)
UPDATE: Following threats to have the occupation violently evicted by riot police, the students left the building again in the evening. (de.indymedia.org)