MONTREAL, March 19, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Concordia students and the Profs contre la Hausse coalition are putting Concordia President Frederick Lowy's luxury condo up for sale. The university agreed to lend Lowy the 1.4 million dollars needed to purchase a new condo and continue to live at 1515, Docteur-Penfield. A loan on which he'll pay no interest at all. Potential buyers will meet in front of Concordia's Hall building on Tuesday, March 20 at 10:30 am for a protest.
What: Sale of Concordia President Frederick Lowy's luxury condo
When: March 20, 2012, 10h30
Where: In front of Concordia's Hall building, 1455 De Maisonneuve W., Montreal
The condo's sale is the latest initiative of the student strike movement to protest against the hike in tuition on the day when finance minister Raymond Bachand's budget is released. "The scandal is not only the fact that universities are under-funded; it's also their management. Clearly, being short of funds hasn't stopped them from wasting our money so far," expressed Liz Colford, the event's student spokesperson. "We refuse to see students having to pick up the bill for this frivolous spending," Colford added.
The event aims to shed light on tendencies in the university world that worry students. Hefty severance packages, increased presence and influence of the private sector in the decision-making process and research are all practices that cause concern among the student body. "It is time to put a stop to the privatization of knowledge!" says Colford.
This is not Concordia's first case of corporate-type management. Recently, Education Minister Line Beauchamp cut two million dollars from Concordia's budget as a penalty for the $ 3.1 million it spent on severance pay for five former administrators, including the previous two presidents, as they were dismissed. These severance packages take inspiration from private enterprises. "The university is no longer fulfilling its role as a social institution but rather it is becoming oriented towards the interests of the market," says Philippe Morin of the Profs contre la Hausse coalition.
The CLASSE anticipates that fees will go up from $1668 in 2007 to $4700, a 143 per cent raise from 2007. According to these numbers, the cost of the condo could cover a full free year of university studies for 298 students.
For further information:
Philippe Morin (Profs contre la Hausse)
Telephone: (438) 883-4611
Liz Colford (Student spokesperson)
Telephone: (438) 824-5499