University of Memphis Presidential Search: submit your candidate evaluations today!

The University of Memphis presidential search proceedings are well underway and continue to move quickly. The presidential candidates' visits to campus finished this morning. Now we have until 5:00 tomorrow, Wednesday March 26th, to fill out the online evaluation forms for the candidates:

http://www.memphis.edu/pressearch/

Guy Bailey Professor / Former President  University of Alabama    Sharon Gaber Provost / Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs University of Arkansas    George W. Hynd Provost / Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs College of Charleston    David Rudd Provost University of Memphis

Health insurance for University of Memphis graduate assistants

University of Memphis graduate assistants have launched a campaign for funded health insurance. You can support their efforts here.

 

 

Statement on U of M Budget Gap

Over the past several weeks we all have received a number of emails from the administration, and are likely hearing more from the media, our supervisors, colleagues, and friends concerning the purported $20+ million budget gap our university is facing. In response to this disconcerting budgetary situation, our new administration is strongly recommending "responsibility centered management" and an overall administrative and organizing restructuring.

As our union’s organizing committee said in a letter many faculty received this week, the speculative restructuring we have been hearing about speaks clearly to many of us as a deliberate move towards the privatization of our public institution. This application of a corporate model to our university not only threatens the security of our employment but also the quality and cost of the “product” we offer (education) and the experience and outcome of our target “consumer” (the student). At the end of the day, no amount of “right-sizing,” “cost-cutting,” “effectiveness and efficiency” will replace honest-to-goodness public investment in the future of our state through robust expenditures on public education.

Wednesday, Nov. 14: University of Memphis Living Wage!

Join an open meeting and information session on issues of economic justice in academia. Find out why tuition and fees keep going up while adjunct pay and graduate stipends stagnate. Hear testimonials by adjuncts, custodians, graduate students. Find out what you can do to bring justice to your campus. The event takes place November 14 from 1:00pm until 2:30pm in Art and Communications Building 250.

Southwest needs adequate funding, not more layoffs

President Essex's memo announcing plans to implement another round of RIFs (Reductions in Force) during the spring semester is very concerning. UCW-CWA has already begun fighting these layoffs. Below you can read the formal Open Records Request our union sent to Southwest administrators on November 29, 2010 and their response. As we receive documents uncovered by this request we will post them to the website.

State tax collections have exceeded expectations by over $60 million since July 1, 2010. Likewise last week the Chronicle of Higher Education reported that Tennessee is one of 6 states accused of bending the rules by cutting higher education budgets too deeply while taking millions in State Maintenance of Effort funding. In both cases these funds could easily prevent any budget cuts to Southwest, offset the increased health insurance costs we face and provide a significant equal-dollar pay raise to all higher education employees. Additionally, the announcements of state funding for new building projects at community colleges across Tennessee make it clear that we do not face questions of resources, we face questions of priorities.