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Auch der Jobmarkt für Studierende ist krisenbedingt leergefegt. Dabei sind Hunderttausende auf einen Nebenerwerb dringend angewiesen. © Julian Stratenschulte / dpa The job market for students has also been swept empty due to the crisis. Hundreds of thousands are urgently dependent on a sideline.

Thousands of students have lost their part-time jobs, an emergency fund is to help them. But in the end, there should be less money for many than expected. Protest is now forming.

"We don't know what to do anymore"

It could be loud this Monday, June 8th, in front of the headquarters of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in Bonn. From eleven o'clock, students from North Rhine-Westphalia want to line up along Heinemannstrasse, at a certain distance, of course, to protest with loudspeakers and posters: against what they consider to be completely inadequate and much too late Corona emergency aids for students. Rallies are not only planned in Bonn, but also in the state capitals of Hanover, Potsdam, Dresden, Mainz and Wiesbaden. It is practically the warm-up for the next campaign - a central demonstration on June 20 in Berlin.

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"We don't know how to help each other anymore," says Amanda Steinmaus from FZS. The nationwide student representatives had already launched an online petition on March 20. "Emergency aid for students now" was the demand, the response was high, but the desired effect in the Ministry of Anja Karliczek failed to materialize. So now you want to be on the street. "We hope to rethink," says Eugen Esman, chairman of the Astas at the University of Cologne at the Süddeutsche Zeitung. His Asta initiated the protest in Bonn, he is supposed to give a voice to students in need and achieve "that the BMBF will not accept that they have let them down," explains the 24-year-old law student.

Every fifth student is in financial difficulties, estimates the Asta of the University of Cologne

40 percent of the 2.9 million students in Germany lost their jobs in the course of the Corona crisis, as a representative survey by the recruitment agency Zenjob found in May. According to this, 22 percent have experienced serious financial difficulties and have already had to borrow money from friends or relatives. This corresponds to more than 600,000 young people who are concerned about how to pay rent, semester fees and groceries. There is no short-time work benefit for most, basic security is generally only available to those who are de-registered. "It cannot be that someone drops out of college to get social assistance," says Eugen Esman, and yet he has heard of such cases. So far, the BMBF has countered this with two instruments: a small interest discount on the student loan from KfW-Bank and an emergency fund.

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There is criticism of both. "Students at subsistence level should go into debt, although because of the recession it is completely open when and how they can repay their debts?" Asks Esman. He finds this logic "cruel". The emergency fund is also angry with students. Because of its relatively low amount of 100 million euros, but even more because of the conditions. Many initially thought that recipients would receive 500 euros each after a means test for a maximum of three months, so it is now clear: Anyone who still has 300 euros on the edge will only get 200 euros. The higher the account balance, the lower the grant - as Karliczek's Parliamentary State Secretary Michael Meister announced at the end of May. Not without emphasizing: "The DSW has defined the limit of need of an account balance of 500 euros."

The German Student Union rejects this. "Legend formation," says DSW spokesman Stefan Grob of the SZ, "we wanted 500 euros for everyone in acute need". Student representatives from Bavaria to NRW to Saxony are also convinced that the BMBF is trying to put the buck on the Studentenwerk. And that in two ways: While the DSW is still in a hurry to create an award portal for the emergency fund announced at the end of April, the BMBF has already dated its start: The Studentenwerk is striving for June 8, the State Secretary said Master.

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The DSW does not let this sit on it uncontested. It only wants to "comment on a start date if it is reliable, everything else only raises false expectations", countered General Secretary Achim Meyer on the Heyde last Thursday - and at the same time spread a little confidence: "But we are still aiming for the first half of June at." This Monday, however, in month four of the crisis, there will definitely be nothing with the help of the state.

Anyone who hoped for the federal government's package for the future will be bitterly disappointed

And whoever hoped that the government's brilliant economic stimulus package might have something for students, has also been disappointed since last week. Anja Karliczek praised that with 60 billion euros almost half of the funds would flow into the future-oriented areas of education, research and innovation. "But in doing so, she apparently completely forgot that these areas will be driven by young academics in the future," says Cologne-based Asta chair Esman: "There is no education, no research and no innovation from people who are sitting on the streets. "

Nicole Spohl, spokeswoman for higher education policy, also criticizes the future package: "Students, scientists or researchers are not even mentioned in the key points paper." The Greens see it in a similar way: "It is fatal that the students in need also go away empty-handed in this package," judged the Bundestag faction. For most of the students, the corona crisis developed into the "education crisis and debt trap".

The balance sheet sounds bitter. And a courageous emergency aid for students who fear for their financial survival is not in sight. At least not today. It could be loud this Monday on Heinemannstrasse in Bonn. And who knows, maybe louder soon in Berlin.

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