Protests & The Future of Higher Education

Its nearly a year since the student protests in London, where Aberystwyth students along with many other university students and student organisations across the United Kingdom marched in protest of the governments proposed tuition fees of £9,000 a year, as well as a mountain of higher education cut backs. Many remember the scenes of violence and vandalism that took place at the Mill bank tower, the kettling of protesters and the attacking of a royal motorcade.

However, although the scenes of the protest will never be forgotten, one has to ask was it worth while?

Sadly, the overwhelming answer tends to be a resounding no. As many students feel as though there calls went unanswered by a Con-Dem coalition government, which promised a lot and as yet has delivered little. It is also particularly apparent that the media and the government were more concerned on placing their focus on the violence and ransacking by minority mobs, as oppose to really addressing and answering the peaceful protest of 50,000 people. This in itself, shows the inadequacy of our coalition government, in that they seem to be more interested in the finger pointing and criticising of minority groups, instead of actually dedicating itself to supporting the majority views around the United Kingdom.

As the scramble for the remaining university places slowly comes to a close, exactly what is in store for the younger generation of the UK as a whole, remains largely unanswered. Although more apprenticeships are promised to those leaving colleges, it seems university degrees will become an expensive option to consider.

So, bearing this in mind, where do we go from here? Do we simply accept this as a sign of the times and that the trebling of tuition fees is now the norm? Or do we need to find another avenue by which to hold the government to account?

It is crucial that the students of the UK decide as to the best course of action for the upcoming years, as well as the direction we choose to take. Again your views on these matters are needed, Were you at the protests? What were your views on the protests? What’s the next step for students in general? And is this government truly answering the questions and tackling challenges it is faced with?