This is not a semester

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– It’s their right to be on strike. It’s my right to have an education.

Due to cuts where 40 percent of the administrative personnel was threaten to be fired, they have been on strike since September. Sandy Filiagkou, Greek exchange student at UiB this spring, is one of the 65 000 students who experienced the consequences. She explains that the people really impacted by the protest are the students.

– What they did to the government? Nothing!, she says.

– For me going back to Greece is chaos.

Affecting all the students

The strike started while students were preparing the exams they failed to pass the previous year, and they lost the opportunity to retake them. The exams from the first semester took place in March, when Sandy Filiagkou already left Greece. She could have missed going for her Erasmus semester abroad, as the administration of her home university did not provide any help in the procedure.

– I did not know what to do. Study? Work? I was not able to make plans.

The situation was even worse for the first year students, as they were not registered at a university and no longer could study at a high school level.

Listen for more details about the tragic consequences for the Greek students:


An overpopulated public sector

Sandy Filiagkou denounces a corrupted system which started in the 1980s when prime minister Andreas Papandréou hired people in the administration to get votes. Students were divided on the topic, some friends of Filiagkou from the left supported the strike saying that cuts also prevent them from being employed later.

For Filiagkou the priority is to have an education. The absence of a university was no longer sustainable:

– It is the public service, it is education, it is one part of Greece. Not having a university means the collapse of the state.

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