Nearly three dozen students from several of Georgia's public colleges and universities gathered on the Capitol lawn Wednesday to protest a nearly $600 million budget cut proposal that they say directly impacts their future.
Students drove from as far as Augusta, Dalton and Carrollton to attend their first organized event, which they say is a warm-up to a large-scale protest that students from across Georgia are planning for March 15.
"We don't represent 35 colleges. We represent one body of students. One voice," said 29-year-old Will Avery, a grad student majoring in history at the University of West Georgia.
Avery, a research assistant, said the proposed cuts could eliminate the funding that pays for his education and supports his family. He's also seeking a certificate in middle and secondary education, another program potentially on the chopping block at his school, he said.