Our new president recently did the typical "listening tour." Of course, the scheduled times were predictably inconvenient and brief. There was, however, an online submission process. I'm posting my letter to the president below.
Dear President Cox,
I am sorry that I haven’t yet had a chance to meet you and that I was not available to attend our designated listening session. I did, however, want to take a moment to share some broad concerns.
The past several years, especially the last two, have been difficult for everyone on campus and in our community. As faculty, it has been difficult not to feel exploited and demoralized. The Regents, USG, and, at times, even GC administrators have signaled their disregard for us. Here are just a few examples of the injustices we’ve endured:
being forced to abide firearms in our classrooms
the [unilateral] reimagining of a more limited, advisory role for the University Senate
being forced, under threat of termination, to do in-person instruction during a pandemic
being forced to answer to a state legislator who demanded to know and compiled a list of which of our programs and classes teach Critical Race Theory
repeatedly not receiving merit pay
having tenure gutted
At no point has anyone intervened on the behalf of faculty (let alone staff, students, or common sense) in these matters. No one in a position of authority stood up and said, This is wrong. I would respectfully encourage you to take immediate, ongoing, and active steps to repair this damage, and I humbly ask you to prepare to take action on our behalf when required in the future. There is much trust to be rebuilt.
Associate Professor of Sociology