Students from Taipei’s Shih Hsin University over the past week have staged a series of protests over expensive dorm prices for exchange students from China.
Led by the Shih Hsin University Student Labor Rights Action Group, the students accused the university of unfairly charging Chinese students higher prices, adding that Chinese students were being treated like “human ATMs.”
At NT$40,000 per semester over a period of five months, dorm rooms at the university for Chinese students cost significantly more than those for local students, who pay NT$12,000 or NT$24,000 per semester.
Students from the university, including many Chinese, rallied in front of the school’s administrative building on Thursday, demanding comprehensive reforms to dormitory policies.
They said that the university should refrain from treating international students differently from Taiwanese, adding that the number of dormitories should be increased to ensure students would not have to search for private housing options.
Among Taiwanese students at the university, just 6.6 percent live in dormitories, placing a serious burden on students amid sky-high accommodation prices in Taipei, the group said.
During a speech in the Department of Journalism, Shih Hsin president Wu Yung-chien (吳永乾) denied accusations that the university was “exploiting” Chinese students, adding that journalists should refrain from “distorting the truth.”
He said journalists should use reliable sources and ignore remarks made by “a minority of people who hold fixed views and ... cause mischief all day long.”
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