California Students Continue to Protest

A day after students took over Campbell Hall and and blocked streets on the campus of UCLA, they go on protesting a hike in student fees at the University of Calfornia system.

The meeting of the UC regents, which took place at UCLA, approve a 32 percent fee increase in an effort to cover a state funding gap of $1.2 billion.

During and after the regents' meeting, protesters from UCLA and other schools demonstrated outside Covel Commons and across campus.

Police estimated the number of protesters on campus approached 2,000 at its peak, reports.

It was also reported, the protest began at about 7:30 a.m., with those inside using a bullhorn to yell at demonstrators gathered outside, accusing police of "coming in swinging" and using pepper spray. Four protesters have been arrested, according to a campus spokesman.

Police sealed off the building, which houses the English and Humanities departments, and classes there have been canceled.

University police Lt. Alex Yao said demonstrators were barricaded behind fire doors on the second floor, but police had control of the rest of the building, San Jose Mercury News reports.

As temperatures dipped into the 40s, chanting outside the school's administration building, Mrak Hall, grew to a feverish pitch. Each time a cadre of police officers clad in riot gear made entry into the building, and then exited with a passel of handcuffed students and teachers in custody, a collective cheer would sound and a new slogan uttered.

"Hell no, we won't go," was popular, as were "The students are justified, UCD is occupied" and "The students, united, will never be divided." Though tensions ran high, participants -- of which there were several hundred — emphasized that the gathering was peaceful and that no violence had occurred.

Andrew Saetern, a 21-year-old student protester, had been at a protest at the Berkeley campus earlier in the day and returned to Davis after receiving a text message about the protest.

"This has been going on since 10 a.m.," he said. "I've been here since noon. And it's not just undergrads (protesting), it's graduate students. My teacher got arrested, too." Saetern described the instructor, who teaches Spanish 2, as very supportive of the students.

"This started as 20 people, then 30, 50... We'll be here tomorrow, too," Saetern said., San Jose Mercury News reports.

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