Education OU Student Union hosts Breaking Point teach-in By ALEXANDRIA SCHELL Posted on March 14, 2013 4 min read 0 0 413 Baker Center was filled with Breaking Point information sessions from noon until 6 p.m. Thursday as the Student Union tried to convey important messages to Ohio University students. With the student debt crisis looming, students felt that their college experience is coming to a literal breaking point. In order to inform all OU students, fifteen Student Union members, some Black Student Union members and some STAND members created Free School: Surviving the Breaking Point. Geared to fight against student social injustice, the event gave students a voice in where their tuition dollars are spent. Although student debt was the main argument for creating the Breaking Point event, there were also other campus issues that needed to be discussed, such as the 1970 student protest that shut down Ohio University, the Crisis in Liberal Arts, neoliberalism and higher education, anti-racism, anti-chauvinism, fighting rape on campus, immigrant education and understanding the OU budget. The Political Science department gave the Student Union $200 to fund this event, which included renting out the facilities and paying for the cost of advertising. Ellie Hamrick, National Campus Organizer for Conflict-Free Campus Initiative, took part in organizing the Breaking Point event. “There’s been really wonderful conversations today that have been held that I think will start a broader dialogue on campus,” she said Student Union created the event in hopes that students would not only start to talk to each other about some of these issues but also begin to act on them. In one session, Dr. Patty Stokes, a professor of women and gender studies, spoke about how to prevent rape on campus. The following session was in regards to the university’s budget and where our tuition dollars go, led by Dr. Fred Cady, political science professor. This was the first year the program was held, although past similar events have taken place. Two years ago, an Ohio University organization held another teach-in event where nearly 200 individuals participated. Last year, Occupy OhioU held teach-in workshops as well. “This has seemed to be the third installment, although it hasn’t been the same organization planning it,” Hamrick said. The Student Union believes that it is a completely reasonable request to know the decisions that the university makes in where it’s money is spent and the purpose for what it is spent on. “Basically, alone, it’s very difficult for students to accomplish anything and having a complete lack of democracy and power. Whatever your cause is… you’re going to have a hard time getting it done alone. This is to help fight for each other’s issues and also demand structural changes,” Hamrick said.