In this Issue: The faculty are UConn, and UConn deserves better
We wish all a healthy start of a new year and new semester. The last two years have offered us all new challenges, both professionally and personally. We recognize and deeply appreciate the commitment and dedication of our members, who have made numerous adjustments and sacrifices during these trying times to keep UConn’s superior reputation intact.
As our university community yet again faces transitions in administrative leadership, in addition to the relentless pandemic-related challenges, we must continue to recognize how central faculty are to the steady machinations of the University of Connecticut. While our students and their education are the heart of our mission, faculty are the backbone of the University. Our critical partnership with the administration is essential to the wider health of UConn.
More than the typical five-year appointments in leadership positions, every year our faculty members meet face-to-face with our 30,000 students during their matriculation at UConn. From classrooms, labs, workshops, internships, seminars, to study abroad, advisory roles and letters of recommendation, our faculty engage our student body at every stage of their training and education. Our coaches and trainers ensure that our student athletes they meet their academic responsibilities and achieve high academic standards, while competing at the highest level in college sports. Additionally, each year UConn faculty are collectively responsible for publishing hundreds of peer-reviewed journal articles, books and book chapters. Last year faculty achieved a University record $286M in research funding. From research on climate change, to Grammy award-winning recordings, to offering cutting-edge, globally-recognized research on COVID-19, our faculty are central to making UConn the world-class university that it is. In all, they have helped draw nearly 40,000 applicants from around the world to join our newest, and most diverse, freshman class.
We start 2022 with a University administration with a balanced budget, and the state, so flushed with cash, that it has met its maximum contributions to the Rainy Day Fund. Some state lawmakers are so convinced that the state’s coffers are excessively bloated that state revenue should be reduced with tax cuts, rather than give state employees a raise. Specifically, UConn-AAUP members have gone six of the last twelve years without a raise. In fact, the University wants its faculty to take essentially a pay cut with its parsimonious offer of 0%, .75%, and 2% pay raises over three years (up from its initial offer of 0%, 0% and 2%). This amounts to a 2.75% pay increase over three years. However, against current 6%-7% annual inflation rates, this offer emerges as a net pay reduction of between 10%-15%.
Our faculty deserve better than this. UConn deserves better than this. The administrators, the Board of Trustees can do better than this. We will continue to push forward in our negotiations and ask our membership to write to lawmakers, express your support via social media, traditional media, the President’s Office, as well as the Board of Trustees.
The faculty are UConn, and UConn deserves better.
In Solidarity. JOIN UConn-AAUP HERE
|Mary Ellen Junda, President
Jeffrey Ogbar, Executive Vice President
Michael Bailey, Executive Director
|“Follow” us on Twitter: @UConnAAUP
“Like” Us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/uconnaaup
UConn-AAUP Website: http://www.uconnaaup.org/AAUP