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Students and educators decry upcoming cuts at Capital Community College

Jasmine Lall, President of the Student Government Association at Capital, spoke at a press conference with other CT State students, faculty and staff to discuss the crisis that the system is facing due to budget cuts.
Ayannah Brown
/
Connecticut Public
Jasmine Lall, President of the Student Government Association at Capital, spoke at a press conference with other CT State students, faculty and staff to discuss the crisis that the system is facing due to budget cuts.

Students and staff at Capital Community College in Hartford gathered at the college Tuesday to discuss the budget cuts that will take effect in two weeks.

The cuts are due to all 12 of the state’s community colleges merging to become Connecticut State Community College.

The cuts will eliminate many student services including the office of career services for all students and cafeteria services for the entire campus.

There will also no longer be office administrator support for multiple departments. Students and staff can also expect to see reductions for the tutoring center and English as a Second Language (ESL) services for students and disability services.

Jasmine Lall, a sophomore at Capital Community College and the president of the Student Government Association, says not having those resources may effect who can get a college education.

“I truly believe we deserve all of what’s being cut, I don’t think they should take that away from us. It’s what makes us a student body and what helps us function as a student body. If they take that away from us, I feel like we’re going to crumble,” Lall said.

Student advocates at Capital Community College say a majority of the student body are not yet aware of the budget cuts. Lall wants students to come together and find a solution, they’ll see the impacts of the cuts when the semester resumes.

Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, and other elected officials need to find a long-term solution to properly fund the college system, said Seth Freeman, a professor at Capital Community College. “Our students are going to be extremely disappointed, they deserve so much better,” he said.

The cuts will be demoralizing for students of color who are already coming from marginalized schools, Freeman says. He wants to help, but says without resources, he can’t.

“These cuts are an attack on our low-income, working class, Black and brown students who predominantly attend Connecticut community colleges,” Freeman said. “The sad thing is many of our students already come from schools in Hartford that are underfunded and I’m afraid our students are going to say this is more of the same.”

Lesley Cosme Torres is an Education Reporter at Connecticut Public. She reports on education inequities across the state and also focuses on Connecticut's Hispanic and Latino residents, with a particular focus on the Puerto Rican community. Her coverage spans from LGBTQ+ discrimination in K-12 schools, book ban attempts across CT, student mental health concerns, and more. She reports out of Fairfield county and Hartford.

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