Occupy UC Davis is no longer occupying the Cross Cultural Center building. For the past few weeks, Occupy UC Davis has been occupying the empty building. However, the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) had been set to move into the building this quarter.
Occupiers seemed to have vacated the building by Monday morning, and in a general assembly outside U.S. Bank on Monday, the occupiers discussed issuing an apology to EOP.
Currently in cramped quarters, the Educational Opportunity Program was planning to relocate to the old Cross Cultural Center, prior to the occupiers’ move.
“We expressed need for the building, letting them know we would use it for academic advising, peer counseling and as a safe haven for under-represented students to come study. The new space would better allow us to do those things,” said Cameron Brown, a peer advising counselor for EOP.
EOP remained in South Hall for the past few weeks, because they could not move into the Cross Cultural Center.
According to Miguel Espinoza, an ASUCD senator, the occupation of the Cross Cultural building made the Occupy movement exclusive.
“I believe there are so many kinds of activism. The occupiers are ignoring all other sides of the UC Davis community, by not engaging all types of students. EOP directs the most vulnerable students, who are under-represented in the universities. By addressing the needs of low income students, they can also address the students who have federal loans or grants,” Espinoza said.
As a student movement, the occupiers felt that taking over the Cross Cultural Center would take that building from the administration.
“The occupy movement is similar to EOP in that the students are trying to be change agents. They have some common goals,” said Arnette Bates, EOP Program Director.
At a general assembly last week, some speakers claimed not to have known that EOP was planning to relocate in the Cross Cultural Center. Many occupiers agreed to leave within 10 days in order to allow the program to expand.
“Occupy needs to remain conscious that it is first and foremost a student movement and they have to engage the differences. Ignoring how many ways there are to be involved will be detrimental,” Espinoza said.
As of Monday afternoon, occupiers said they had no plan to re-occupy the building and would be cleaning up to allow EOP to move in.
DANIELLE HUDDLESTUN can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.