Cal State Northridge President Jolene Koester issued the following statement late Thursday night following the arrest of five individuals during an off-campus demonstration that came on the heels of a peaceful rally at the university earlier in the day:
Today in California, large numbers of people across the state participated in actions to bring attention to the importance of the state’s investment in education. Large numbers of students, faculty, and staff at California State University, Northridge participated in peaceful demonstrations on campus and expressed in a highly positive way their concerns and deeply held beliefs about the importance of access to higher education. Unfortunately, a smaller group chose to use tactics off campus that were disruptive to our neighbors and to the larger community.
As a university, we hold as core values open dialogue and the free and respectful expression of differing points of view. I am heartened that on this day so many members of our campus community found positive expression for the value of higher education. But I’m also disturbed and saddened by the less responsible actions of a few. I want to again acknowledge the widespread expressions of support for higher education in the state of California that we witnessed. That is the primary message of this day.