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Much like the writer of “If Young People Are the Future, Has America Failed Its Students?” I am a first-generation student from a low-income background. I too have seen my friends leave the university because the costs were overwhelming. This quarter my budget was less than $300, and in buying my textbooks I watched two hundred of those dollars vanish in the blink of an eye. A person can’t eat on $100 for three months. That is why I believe so passionately that the overburdening expense of textbooks must be dealt with in the most immediate and pragmatic way possible.
The way to achieve that is to incentivize faculty directly through a grant program to switch to an open textbook model free from unnecessary new editions and enrollment codes. Faculty won’t accept any solution that hurts them financially, so we need to create a program that benefits them as well as students.
CALPIRG is authoring and championing that very program. Please support our affordable textbooks campaign. I want to complete the education I fought tooth and nail to earn my way into, and I want all of my friends, privileged and otherwise, to walk that stage alongside me. Thank you for your time reading this, and thank you for supporting our campaign.