Student Voices {Support Public Higher Education}

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Dennis's Voice

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How have increased tuition fees impacted you and your family?:
I am a first generation college student and will be the first college graduate in my family in over four generations on either side of my family. Budget cuts have greatly impacted me. I am a transfer student to San Francisco State University. I had to go to community college in order to work and support my family. We are a low income family and I am the oldest of three sons. My father works 12-14 hour days 7 days a week, and my mother is chronically ill and unable to work. It is necessary for me to work not only to put myself through college, but also to help support my family. The rising tuition costs have not been counterbalanced by increased course offerings. Since it is necessary for me to work to survive, even though I am a financial aid recipient, I find myself making hard decisions. I find my job security threatened because all of the classes I need to take for my major are not offered at times that I am able to take them. I am in a hard position, having to choose between furthering my education and following my family's dream of me completing college, and having to deal with the present reality of having to work.


What are you studying at SF State and what do you hope to do once you graduate?:
I am majoring in Mechanical Engineering. I hope to work in urban and rural populations to design and evaluate infrastructures that will benefit society while reducing pollution, specifically to water systems.


Dennis H., 23 South San Francisco, CA



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