This Friday, Students, faculty, staff and supporters rallied to protest the UVM administration's myopic focus on profit.
|students marching outside of the Board of Trustee's meeting|
For close to two hours, academics in full regalia, UVM staff, and students with huge divestment posters and signs and supporters from the Vermont Worker's center marched and sang outside of the Board of Trustees meeting in the Davis Center.
The protest represented not only a show of solidarity between different causes around campus, but also the realization that all of us are working towards a stronger voice on campus.
United Academics (the faculty union at UVM) is currently at impasse in negotiations with the administration, as the administration refuses to guarantee severance pay to non-tenured lecturers who have worked for the school for over a decade, and have increased healthcare premiums on the faculty, such that it actually serves as a pay decrease for some of the faculty. At the same time, the administrative salary continues to grow at a rate that far outstrips faculty and staff at the University.
|Melissa's sign says it all|
With respect to divestment at UVM, we know that we all want a greater voice on campus--if the administration was more open to our opinions and desires, divestment would be an easy sell (we have collected thousands of signatures in support of divestment, and many of UVM's governing bodies have passed resolutions that explicitly support fossil fuel divestment, including United Academics).
The protest was a strong statement that "The University" is not just the administration. Indeed, it sometimes it seems that they are outside of it.
|Some United Badassery|
Read the Burlington Free Press' coverage here