FIU orgs to hold protest against Governor DeSantis’ Higher Education Reform

Courtesy of YDSA at FIU Instagram

Diego Diaz | Asst. News Director

In opposition to Governor DeSantis’ proposed Higher Education changes, a coalition of student and faculty organizations have organized a protest on the Graham Center Lawns, Thursday, Feb. 23. 

Mirroring the targets of DeSantis’ collegiate ire, the coalition included queer/LGBTQ organizations, faculty organizations including the graduate student Grad Wages & Rights, as well as political student organizations like FIU’s Young Democratic Socialist of America. 

Notably, the coalition is not limited to FIU organizations, with Miami Dade College’s Queer Collective also taking part.

“We share an interest in being treated correctly, in queer students having the accessibility of the accommodations that they need to be comfortable on campus,” said Jacob-Alexander, president of YDSA at FIU. “And of course, the necessity both for students and for professors to be able to teach freely. 

Targets for DeSantis’ proposal include the prohibition of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion frameworks from public institutions as well as banning public universities from supporting campus activities or programs related to DEI, or Critical Race Theory. 

Moreover, the proposal would also radically change the power of faculty and university departments, including the de facto erasure of tenure.    

“Now conservatives are targeting the education sector, it’s the first step,” said Ricardo Correa, candidate for SGA Upper Division BBC senator. “What is this going to progress to?” 

Lead up to the protest have included two sign making events hosted by UFF-FIU and YDSA respectively, Feb. 22.

PantherNOW/ Diego Diaz

Ness Cruz, candidate for Student Government Association Housing senator and Pride Student Union member, spoke to PantherNOW regarding the importance of this unified opposition, all while co-hosting the YDSA sponsored event.

“If we give DeSantis the platform and power to pass this legislation, he sets a precedent for the rest of the country,” said the sophomore International Relations major. “We want to interfere now, before it spirals out of control.” 

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