Emersonians demand halt on tuition increase

04/01/2022 By Carol Rangel

Dozens of Emerson College students gathered in the Boylston Place alley to protest the college’s latest tuition increase for the next school year.

The demonstration followed an email by interim president William P. Gilligan and the Chairman of the Board Eric Alexander on Mar. 17 announcing the 2% increase in tuition and the same amount in room and board.

Neiko Pittman, protest organizer, and student government candidate, said his financial aid is at its maximum amount and asks for transparency on the school’s expenditures.

“I’m paying so much money to come here. I don’t need to be paying more money,” Pittman said.

According to the administration’s email, Emerson’s trustees and senior leadership have been committed to a minimal annual tuition increase.

“It remains a priority to ensure that the College is as affordable as possible for current and future students,” the email said.

According to a Newsweek article published last year, Emerson is among the colleges with the biggest tuition jump over the last 10 years, compounding an increase of over $20,000 since 2019.

The tables in the 2B alley served as an open stage for several students to take the megaphone and make their grievances public.

“We tried to send you emails, we tried to do all that kind of stuff, but you don’t listen to us,” Qingshi ‘Rocky’ Meng said. “Now, we have to protest. If protesting doesn’t work, we’ll make an even bigger protest.”

A few members of the college’s administration were present observing the protest from the outside, including Vice President and Dean of Campus Life Jim Hoppe.