Penguins protest: Calgary students set up display in fight against education cuts

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CALGARY — A snow penguin protest that generated buzz in Edmonton is now in Alberta's biggest city.

Representatives in Calgary for the Council of Alberta University Students say they have built about 250 snow penguins outside the provincial government's McDougall Centre to protest cuts to post-secondary education.

Late last month, students from Edmonton's University of Alberta and McEwan University used snow moulds to build about 800 penguins on the grounds of the legislature for the same cause.

Groundskeepers destroyed most of them the next day, as the government deemed them tripping hazards.

Marley Gillies, vice-president of the University of Calgary Students' Union, says the group has been in contact with management at McDougall Centre and hopes the penguin display will last longer.

Gillies says students in Calgary want to bring attention to a 22.5 per cent rise in tuition over three years and to cuts to Alberta's post-secondary institutions.

"This is something we are all really united on," Gillies said Monday.

The snow penguins may show up in Lethbridge, Alta., next, she said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 8, 2021.

The Canadian Press