A dozen students from several California State University campuses have ended a hunger strike after nine days. The students had been protesting against being hit with tuition hikes while top university administrators received salary increases.
After eight days of subsisting on water and juice, 22-year-old David Inga said he was completely out of it for the last 24 hours of the hunger strike.
"I just couldn’t function," said Inga. "I was pretty much like a vegetable."
Inga is a graduate student at Cal State Fullerton. He’s one of a dozen students, all members of a group called Students for Quality Education, who had pledged to fast until Cal State Chancellor Charles Reed agreed to stop tuition increases and limit the size of compensation packages for campus presidents and administrators.
That didn’t happen, and university officials refused to meet with the protesters.
Still, Inga called the strike a mild success.
"I think with the fact that we were able to present these issues to the broader public and kind of put it in their face, we forced people to become critically engaged," he said.
University officials said they’re relieved the hunger strike’s over and hope the students didn’t damage their health, but a spokesman described the strikers’ tactics as “disruptive and obnoxious.”