UC Berkeley group advertises cupcakes — for $22,000

Danielle Lee/Staff
Members of the UC Movement for Efficient Privatization held a bake sale on Upper Sproul Plaza, charging $22,000 per cupcake. This pricing represented the proposed student fee increase to $22,000.

The UC Movement for Efficient Privatization jumped on the bake sale bandwagon Wednesday afternoon when its members came out on Sproul Plaza to satirically raise awareness about rising cost of public education.

Representatives from the group promised free cupcakes if students signed up for $22,000 student loan applications provided by Citibank.

“We believe everyone should be equally ripped off … regardless of race or gender,” said Morgan Wadsworth, philanthropy chair of the group and a graduate of UC Berkeley.

Wadsworth said the bake sale was in opposition to a plan discussed by the UC Board of Regents at its last meeting that, if approved, could raise tuition as much as 81 percent over the next four years.

Wednesday’s bake sale is yet another event that parallels the Berkeley College Republicans’ “Increase Diversity Bake Sale,” which made national headlines last month for its attempted satirization of SB 185, a bill that was vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown Saturday that would have put race and gender back into the admissions process for the UC and CSU systems. On the day of the Republicans’ bake sale, other student groups handed out baked goods in response to the original event.

Regarding the case of public education and increased tuition, Shane Boyle, chairman of the group and a UC Berkeley graduate student, said he hopes that the group’s future events will convince students to participate in “mass action” against the board.

“There will be a zombie flash mob tomorrow called the ‘Day of Living Debt,’” Boyle said. “Volunteers will chase students down in zombie costumes and give them fliers regarding our November days of action.”

In the past, the group, which Boyle calls “a public education coalition,” has put on humorous events to pose as extreme and ironic supporters of the group’s perception that UC education is becoming swiftly and efficiently privatized.