Saturday, December 1, 2012

@SEIU500CAL #AcademicLabor Forum, Panel I

…see complete conference schedule here

Caste and Classes – linking our struggle for the rights of contingent faculty to the larger struggle to maintain a middle class, ensure access to quality education for all, and save the dignity of work for everyone from professors to janitors.
  • Gary Rhoades, Professor and Director, Center for the Study of Higher Education College of Education University of Arizona
  • Pablo Eisenberg, Senior Fellow, Georgetown Public Policy Institute
  • Wayne Langley, Director, Higher Education Division, SEIU Local 615










12 comments:

  1. These are all great comments: thanks for keeping us in the loop ;-)

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  2. How can we add our comments? Is there a way to post to twitter anonymously?

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    1. Sorry about the delay. During the conference, we could have passed on messages via Twitter and still can. Just post them here. Another alternative, if you are already use twitter would be open another account with a different email address that you don't display. Pck a good nic. Try not to sound like yourself and don't give out too many clues.

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  3. We are the majority. Let's ACT like one. Somewhere, sometime--soon, there must be a call for a Day of National Action with proposals to create local committees to build it. Contingent faculty already know how shitty it is. A national action will be a tribune to place this issue in front of all and lay the basis for mobilizing the kind of power needed to really change things.

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    1. What's your plan for organizing a Day of Action? Ground work? Promotion? What kind of action do you have in mind? Take a look the original March 4 Actions in 2009 that preceded and laid the foundation for Occupy.

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    2. I am interested in participating in any action proposal put forward by this conference that facilitates reaching out to the hundreds of adjunct faculty in my area which calls on them to meet and participate in change. What are we to do to counter the isolation of adjunct labor by mobilizing ourselves to change things? Like March 4, Like May 1 2006 Day Without Immigrants. Do we have a perspective of involving the largest number of contingent faculty possible? We need to be able to talk to more adjuncts. We need to build local committees as components of a national movement. What kinds of actions can make this happen?

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    3. SEIU 500 is mostly D.C. area. Start with just talking it up on as many networks as possible. Ask everybody to pass it on. Not all will but there will be some. Suggest and ask for specific, feasible actions.

      It's riskier for us than it is for students. Just making some kind of symbolic gesture count as long as the network keeps growing for the next time and the next.

      Get a handful of people to start. A core. Each in the core builds another network.

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    4. David, I sent a note to a few people to stop by and share ideas. Plus, I'm going to add a comment on the FB page too. My own experience is that lurkers are likelier than active participants. So is rhetorical hyperbole.

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    5. Edit is not working so let me expand: lurkers are potential participants, a bit frustrating at times not knowing more or even when / if they are listening, but that, like rhetoric, goes with the territory. Idea exchange and communication is where it starts: both listening and discussing. Each is its own kind of foot in the door too.

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  4. I don't think that it's hyperbolic to acknowledge that the conditions we contingent faculty face are not localized, but are national in scope, at least. And it's also not hyperbolic to say that this issue can only be addressed by building the largest participation of contingent faculty for change as possible. I don't like "lurker" as a moniker for those we haven't talked to or met or sought out to participate in proposals for actions. But the term does illustrate what I'm trying to address. How do we lift the darkness or fog surrounding those we are trying to reach? How do we know if we are growing? How do we know how many are stepping forward to participate? I think discussions and meetings should always put forward proposals for actions that call on people to join and participate. How many people are reading this? 5? 10? 100? 2? The internet and blogs are great tools, but they can engender a sort of darkness. There is a need for meetings and actions to know where we are heading. Not hyperbolic, but a meeting of 4 that resolves to be a meeting of 8 next time. It's only through actions that need participation that we can draw participants. Lets have a center that tallies local progress and based on that, determines what is possible to go further. Finally, leadership means seeking and developing more and more leaders.

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    1. Groan, wrote a reply ~ longish too ~ longer than I can remember or want to retype. The short version is that all means of connecting have a place and purpose. They also interact: posts here inform readers about meetings, conferences, actions and so on ~ encouraging them to attend, try something out in their own area. I'd like more event coverage and follow up than I get because that encourages even more participation.

      Even lurkers have a purpose. For one thing, not knowing what they do or what effect following has does not mean no effect. Outlying or weak connections share with other networks and often more (sometimes even more effectively) than active members of a group. They are go-betweens.

      About 300 visited the page, many more saw links on other media. Some share, send others. Comments? No telling although there probably is an algorithm for that.

      If you have a specific proposal, put it forth and I'll help spread the information. Keep an eye on posts, info/links on sidebars. Unless you are FB-averse, check there too.

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    2. PS I meant to write that the computer ate my reply. Back in 2009 Bob Samuels in CA proposed a Day of Action, wanted it national but it ended up being mostly CA. He did not repeat it but should have. That made me think, what about a local action but invite others elsewhere to join, put on their own? Piggybacking on a student or other action is another possibility.

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