Press release of the Viadrina student representatives
Frankfurt (Oder), 20/04/2020
Viadrina student representatives criticise irresponsible actions of Federal Minister of Education Anja Karliczek in the corona crisis!
More than two thirds of students in Germany work to finance their studies. Since the corona crisis, also this group has had to accept harsh financial losses.
However, the responsible Federal Minister of Education, Anja Karliczek (CDU), refuses to take action and support the students in Germany. Janina Lehmann, AStA Chairperson of the European University Frankfurt Oder: "We students are deliberately left alone by the federal government. Last year, 900 million euros in BAföG funds were not called up, which would now help students in this unique emergency situation." The AStA chairwoman herself works alongside her studies and does voluntary work and knows the situation of her fellow students very well.
In contrast, the state of Brandenburg, after tough but hopeless negotiations with the Federal Ministry of Education, is single-handedly responding to the students' increasing need with solidarity. The Minister of Science Manja Schüle (SPD) and the Minister of Finance Katrin Lange (SPD) convince the BrandStuVe and the AStA of the Viadrina with an immediate aid programme. In cooperation with the two student unions in Potsdam and Frankfurt Oder, 25 million euros will be made available at short notice for students in need through an interest-free loan (amounting to 500 euros per month).
Marie Glißmann, representative of the European University in the Brandenburg Student Union (BrandStuVe): "25,000 Brandenburg students can now be helped non-bureaucratically. First of all, this is a complete success for us after weekly, constructive talks with the Ministry of Science at eye level. However, this loan entails a debt that would not have to be if Minister Karliczek would fulfil her responsibility towards the students, but also towards the federal states."
Lehmann and Glißmann agree that the President of the European University Viadrina and the Ministers of the State of Brandenburg show how competent higher education policy leadership can succeed in difficult times.
Janina Lehmann Marie Glißmann
AStA Chairperson Representative of BrandStuVe